In a combination of a press release and series of tweets from CEO Pat Gelsinger, Intel this afternoon has announced a pair of significant corporate leadership changes at the company, which will impact both their Intel Foundry Services (IFS) and graphics/accelerator business segments. In brief, IFS is getting new leadership, while Intel GPU guru and chief architect Raja Koduri is leaving the company for new pastures.

First and foremost, Intel today is announcing in a press release that they have promoted Stuart Pann to be the new senior VP and general manager of Intel Foundry Services. Pann replaces Dr. Randhir Thakur, who was IFS’s inaugural president. Thakur announced late last year that he was stepping down from the position and leaving Intel at the end of March, so we have been expecting Intel to appoint a new IFS head before the month was out.

Pann, in turn, is a long-serving Intel employee with a history inside and outside of the company, most recently returning to Intel in 2021 to serve as senior VP, chief business transformation officer and general manager of Intel’s Corporate Planning Group. Intel credits him with being one of the chief organizers behind Intel’s IDM 2.0 strategy – as well as Intel’s internal foundry model – which in turn are among the primary reasons for establishing IFS.

Pann’s background is, broadly speaking, on the business side of matters. while he holds an EE degree, his time at Intel has been spent in business management and corporate planning, rather than working within Intel’s fab group itself. This is a notable change from Dr. Thakur, who had an extensive background in fab engineering before moving into his leadership role. With that said, given that IFS’s success will hinge, in part, on being able to attract outside customers (and not just developing advanced fab technologies within the company), it’s not wholly surprising to see Intel appoint a more business-experienced leader for the growing fab business.

Intel Graphics Guru Raja Koduri Leaves for AI Software Startup

Besides Dr. Thakur’s previously arranged departure from Intel, it turns out the company will see one other major leadership change. As first revealed in a tweet from CEO Pat Gelsinger, Raja Koduri will be leaving Intel at the end of the month. A well-known name in the graphics business for decades, Koduri has most recently been serving as a chief architect for Intel’s GPU/accelerator businesses, and prior to that was the GM of Intel’s Accelerated Computing Systems and Graphics Group (AXG).

Koduri joined Intel in 2017 (coming from AMD), and has been the cornerstone of Intel’s modern efforts to grow its GPU and accelerator businesses. Besides the various flavors of Intel’s Xe graphics architecture and resulting products like the Data Center GPU Max series (Ponte Vecchio) and Arc A-series video cards, Koduri has also overseen the simultaneous development of Intel’s oneAPI software stack, which is designed to provide a well-crafted software development platform for Intel’s GPUs while also unifying Intel’s overall software development efforts behind a single, unified API and toolset (literally, one API).

While Intel is still working to better establish its footing within the GPU space, the AXG business unit itself has undergone some changes, which in turn have impacted Koduri’s position within the company. Koduri was the head of AXG up until December of 2022, when Intel announced that it would be splitting up AXG into separate consumer and datacenter/AI groups, which in turn were placed under Intel’s Client Computing Group and Dataceter and AI Group respectively. Following that split, Koduri returned to serving as Intel’s chief architect for GPUs, accelerators, and their convergence with Intel’s traditional CPU products.

According to a tweet published by Koduri in response to Gelsinger’s initial announcement, Raja has announced that he will be moving on to a software startup focusing on generative AI for gaming, media, and entertainment. Koduri says that he “will have more to share in coming weeks,” but at a high level, this certainly sounds like a good fit for someone so steeped in to computer graphics and AI.

Still, it will be interesting to see what kind of impact this has on Intel’s GPU and accelerator efforts. Raja Koduri has been a driving force for Intel’s GPU efforts for the last 6 years, leaving a sizable impression on their efforts in both the consumer and datacenter spaces. Intel is about to have a chart-topping, exascale-class GPU-based supercomputer to their credit with the nearly finished Aurora system, and Intel’s discrete GPU shipments for consumers are already within closing distance of AMD’s. All of which come from projects overseen by Koduri.

At the same time, however, Koduri’s departure comes at a turbulence for Intel’s GPU efforts. Besides last year’s reorganization, Intel cancelled Rialto Bridge, their Ponte Vecchio successor, earlier this month. That cancellation set back Intel’s data center GPU follow-up plans by about 2 years, as their next product will now be Falcon Shores in 2025. So 2023 is proving to be a time of great transition for Intel, both in regards to their product stack and their GPU leadership.

Source: Intel

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  • Silver5urfer - Wednesday, March 22, 2023 - link

    Intel is losing it.

    They make all sort of BS bookkeeper based decisions. A while back it was Jim Keller and then the whole Engineering background guys got replaced by an MBAs add the California's controversial C position rules. Now Raja got fired from AXG. This company is bleeding tons of talent and cash. That Pat Gelsinger has worked with Unit 8200 based companies which is the forefront for NSO Spyware division no wonder why Intel ME is disabled on the Workstation that I was provided by the company. This company is toast if the R&D does not increase and innovate. They killed L4 EDRAM while AMD is making waves with 2023 version of it. They nuked Optane, they lost Lithography edge since 10nm failure. And a ton of issues all over.

    LGA1700 ILM failure when it comes to Client (don't forget self sabotage LGA1200 backport) and the massive E core push due to aging CORE series uArch and SPR XEON just got deleted by Genoa. It's really hard to imagine how they are going to change their fate. The bookkeepers are not doing their jobs properly as they just keep it barely afloat killing off things left and right, all the greedy investors axed a ton of innovation and sold of top end for scraps (Intel Modem business, NAND Flash etc) and those investors are in Apple. At this point I think the mega big Bilderberg declared the usefulness of Intel is done and sucked all life out of it along with the stock profits and shorts left it to rot with awful management.
  • mode_13h - Thursday, March 23, 2023 - link

    > They killed L4 EDRAM while AMD is making waves with 2023 version of it.

    It's not. If you think AMD's 3D cache is akin to EDRAM, then you don't understand it.
  • Silver5urfer - Thursday, March 23, 2023 - link

    I know dude, what is an X3D on AMD with TSMC COWOS and L4. Intel could have optimized it all the way to 14nm++ but they did not and only chose to do it with Apple BGA junk.

    The thing is Intel had this chiplet based Cache system eons ago and not this modern AMD version is the only one, many do not know about this. And look at Ian's own 5775C benchmarks vs SKL it totally destroys SKL and approaches the CML 6C part. If Intel kept it all the way it would have been amazing, but their BS bookkeepers thought it's a waste of money to change the sockets and engineering so they axed it.
  • Oxford Guy - Thursday, March 23, 2023 - link

    5775C was throttled by design, thermally. The lower-tier 5675C beat it or tied it in several games in this site’s tests. Also, lots of armchair analysts have said it was too expensive (not high-enough margin) to have that e-dram.

    Skylake apparently had the interface to run an e-dram module but Intel chose not to make a part with one, likely because it had no competition.

    A writer at Ars, Peter Bright, called Intel out for refusing to make it.
  • Oxford Guy - Thursday, March 23, 2023 - link

    Throttled by the power cap I meant to say.
  • Otritus - Monday, March 27, 2023 - link

    While the technologies are inherently different both function similarly on the CPU. The goal was to enhance the performance of LLC by increasing capacity. Both increase performance in similar situations. A higher performance l4$ will likely be all Intel needs to counter V-Cache. Broadwell was competitive with 10th gen CPUs in gaming with higher core counts for a reason. A modern variant with more bandwidth and possible twice the capacity is sufficiently competitive.
  • mode_13h - Thursday, March 30, 2023 - link

    DRAM has much higher latency than SRAM, and putting it in-package doesn't really change that. The main benefit is increased bandwidth, which indeed benefits highly-scalable workloads. The sweet spot for a DRAM-based cache is going to be significantly different than a larger L3.
  • mode_13h - Thursday, March 23, 2023 - link

    > They nuked Optane,

    It lost them money. Consistently. And it's lagging NAND flash in GB/$ by more and more, year after year, with no signs of a turnaround.
  • Silver5urfer - Thursday, March 23, 2023 - link

    The way how innovation works is you have to make amendments to the technology else we would have been playing with rocks still today. And Intel squandered it. Their beancounters do not let them innovate because Intel is bleeding cash every single quarter.
  • mode_13h - Friday, March 24, 2023 - link

    You assume Optane couldn't increase density for simple lack of will or investment, but we don't know that. If Intel had a path to match or exceed density increases of NAND flash, I think it would still be around (if maybe in someone else's hands).

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