Introducing SK hynix memory solutions America Inc. in San Jose, USA
Successful, high-achieving teams all share a simple formula. They are made up of many individual players – each one an expert in their particular role – who work well together towards a common goal. Different skill sets, perspectives and proficiencies combine to create a well-balanced, dynamic group. One that is fortified by the width of its foundation and propelled by the strengths of its members. It is this type of team that has the ability to approach a challenge from all angles, and to then create solutions holistically.
This is just the type of team that SK hynix has built – both here in the U.S. and in markets across the world. Over the years, the company has worked actively and strategically to grow its offerings in key sectors across the memory and semiconductor industries. In each of these endeavors and acquisitions, SK hynix is looking first and foremost for good teammates – for highly-skilled, proven partners who will help the group at large achieve its overall goals.
At SK hynix, we know that our group is only as strong as its individual parts; which is why we’ve made sure each of our parts is the very best in their respective fields. One of our memory solutions R&D subsidiaries—SK hynix memory solutions America Inc. (SKHMS America) —is a prime example of the implementation and success of this strategy.
“We work very closely as “One team” with the SSD controller and Systems Engineering teams in San Jose, and also the greater SK hynix team in South Korea and our team in Belarus,” said Tim Schafer, Vice President of the Enterprise SSD Firmware Team at SKHMS America.
In 2012, SK hynix acquired Link_A_Media Devices Corporation (LAMD) , a privately-owned storage solutions company that had been providing custom System-on-Chip solutions (SoCs) for the HDD and SSD storage markets for nearly a decade. At the time, LAMD was one of three companies in the world that was developing high performance NAND solutions for all segments of the storage solution market – including enterprise systems, PCs, smartphones, and tablets, etc. In eight years, the company shipped over 14 million SoCs.
After its acquisition by SK hynix, LAMD became SK hynix memory solutions, and later changed its name to SK hynix memory solutions America Inc. in 2018. Today, SKHMS America operates as a separate R&D subsidiary located in San Jose, CA, that offers customized NAND-based solutions for SK hynix and a group of global customers. It provides industry-leading controllers, advanced flash management systems, and firmware for NAND-based storage solutions spanning enterprise, client and mobile market segments.
“We are developing eSSD drives combining raw NAND memory devices and SoC/FW to add more value such as more reliable data retention/protection and higher data access performance,” explained Jay Jang, Vice President of SoC group of SKHMS America.
The integration of the controller solution know-how of SKHMS America combined with the advanced flash memory systems architecture, NAND, firmware, and DRAM technologies as well as the manufacturing capabilities of SK hynix is producing leading-edge products across multiple market segments. Such a full vertical integration, coupled with high-volume manufacturing capability, is quite rare in the industry and allows our customers to have a one-stop storage solution provider with the quality, support and expertise that the industry demands.
“It is rare to have architecture, chip design, firmware development, hardware design, solution validation, problem solving, and customer support engineering resources under one roof but SKHMS America intentionally sets up this structure to ensure inclusiveness and cohesiveness for all its talented employees,” said Chee Hoe Chu, Vice President of Systems Engineering at SKHMS America.
SK hynix is a relative newcomer to enterprise SSDs. However, it has been growing its market share, providing a more and more diverse portfolio as the years pass by. Tim said, “Because we are relatively new, we must be focused, more efficient, and more agile than our more mature competitors. We are very focused on deeply engaging with a smaller amount of customers so we can learn with them. We’ve grown our market share, and the challenge that we are preparing for over the next few years is to scale our business to a much larger customer base.”
Chee Hoe emphasized that although SKHMS America was still an infant in enterprise storage landscape, it was empowered by passionate personnel who had years of dependable development experiences. He added, “We have employees who yearn to learn what matters to our customers and learn from every big and small mistakes we made. We value the outcome of our business and the reputation of our work. While we are very determined to gain market share, we want to do so without sacrificing quality and trust. To achieve these, the formidable workforce at SKHMSA are always ready to go many extra miles.”
The combined focus of SK hynix and SKHMS America provides excellent opportunity to become a market leader in enterprise, client and mobile storage segments. Together, we make a cohesive team that delivers quality products, pushes boundaries and moves the industry forward toward innovation.
“SKHMSA is a strong contender in enterprise storage sector, with its sleeves rolled up, ready to overcome any hardship along the way,” said Chee Hoe.