AMD Raja Koduri leaves Radeon Technology Group Leadership
AMD’s Vice President and Chief Architect Raja Koduri has decided to step aside until 2018.
Raja Koduri returned to AMD after leaving to work for Apple and has been with AMD and helped form the Radeon Technology Group over the last few years. The fruits of his labour come in the form of the much anticipated Vega GPU’s.
Unfortunately the release of the Vega graphics cards has been much belated and mired by a number of issues. Vega 56 and 64 are sitting at higher prices than expected due to online coin miners. The Vega graphics cards were also supposed to release in 2016. These graphics cards have been also tarred by difficulty in manufacturing HBM2 memory and limited suppliers namely Samsung.
What stands out about Raja Koduri is that he is the face of RTG and his temporary departure may be as a result of the current problems AMD faces with its graphics cards. This departure is worrying because it should be the time to celebrate and reap the rewards of the work done over the past few years into High-end graphics cards.
Raja wrote a letter to his team amidst the news that he needs the time off. In his letter, Raja talks about the past and present success of the RTG team. He also mentions the stresses of creating Vega graphics cards. Raja mentions the balance between work and personal life he needs to address.
Despite the letter to his team and what seems to be a legitimate reason for taking time away, there are some questions that remain to be answered. This announcement follows tweets that come across as a little bemused and frustrated. It appears that Lisa Su has taken the initiative and taken Raja off the gaze of the public. Raja mentioned that his role would be adjusted and that tends to signal a replacement.
It would be a shame if Raja would leave all out but with the recent debacle and his in-concise tweets and open ended messaging it makes sense to keep his talent and find someone with a stronger skill set for the public and a leadership role at RTG. AMD has fallen short with Vega and Raja appears not to have acknowledged its shortcomings. A new leader at RTG would certainly be a new breath of fresh air and optimism.