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Research establishment in electronics and manufacturing


Imec, Interuniversity Microelectronics Centre, is one of the largest research houses for semiconductor technology in the world.

Founded in 1984, imec quickly established itself as the leading research hub for advanced CMOS scaling. It continues to shape the roadmap for the semiconductor industry. In addition, imec leverages deep-tech expertise and combines it with software and system knowledge to build up a portfolio of advanced technologies.

Lu Van den hove is the President and CEO at imec, serving since 2009.

In 2016, imec merged with iMinds, a research center located in Flanders (Belgium) specialized in information & communication technology. This merger aimed at strengthening imec’s offering towards Flemish and international industry. By combining top notch hardware and software expertise with capabilities in AI and cybersecurity, imec aims to provide solutions in the domains of smart health, smart mobility, smart energy, smart cities, smart industry, and smart education, envisioning a better life in a sustainable society.


It has developed a number of spin-off companies across a variety of market segments.

In EDA alone, the spinoffs include:

  • PowerEscape (Acquired by ARM, 2006) EDA tools for power-efficient design of digital data-intensive systems
  • CoWare (Acquired by Synopsis, 1996) Hardware/software co-design
  • Target Compiler Technologies (1996) Retargeteable code generation for design and programming of DSP processors
  • Alphabit (Acquired by Agilent Technologies, 1992) Development of CAE software for the design of high-frequency and high-speed electronics
  • Easics (imec/KU Leuven spin-off, 1992) Design of VLSI ASICs
  • Frontier Design (Acquired by ARM , 1989) Development of CAE design software


  • HQ: Leuven, Belgium
  • Known for: PowerEscape, CoWare, Target Compiler Technologies, Alphabit, Easics, Frontier
  • Web: URL
  • Other names: Interuniversity Microelectronics Centre
  • Type: Company