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Rockwell Decides on 'Conexant' for Semiconductor Unit

Communications: Name for spinoff was developed at a cost of nearly $500,000. Slogan will tout company as 'what's next.'

November 11, 1998|JONATHAN GAW | TIMES STAFF WRITER

The Newport Beach-based semiconductor unit of Rockwell International Corp. will be called when it is spun off at the end of this year, the company said Tuesday.

The new company will have a red, stylized "C" logo, and its stock will be traded on the Nasdaq market under the symbol CNXT.

The Conexant name, developed by Berkeley-based Master-McNeil Inc., is intended to merge the ideas of "connecting," "next" and the suffix "ant," implying "a proactive action-oriented approach to business."

The company, which makes semiconductors for communications electronics such as wireless telephones and broad-band networks, hopes the name, slogan and logo will bring to mind next-generation communications technologies.

The company also said it will adopt the slogan, "What's next in communications technologies."

" 'What's next' is not a question, it's a statement," said Dwight Decker, who will be chairman and chief executive of the company, during an unveiling party with the company's employees. "We will bring to our customers what's next in communications technologies."

Siegel & Gale, a Los Angeles-based branding consulting firm, oversaw the project, which cost nearly $500,000.

Rockwell will formally unveil the name next week at the Comdex computer trade show in Las Vegas and begin a print media advertising campaign Nov. 30. The ad campaign, which will last about 45 days, will focus on the business and trade press and cost about $1 million, said Christopher Gorciak, a spokesman for Rockwell Semiconductor Systems.

Conexant was the second choice for a name. The top pick, Clariant, was taken by a chemical company that was a spinoff of the former Sandoz Pharma Ltd.

"There are very few original ideas anymore," said Noah Manduke, executive vice president of Siegel & Gale."

The third choice, Nexity, became the name of Decker's month-old poodle.

"I was looking for a name for the dog and figured we had a good one that wasn't being used," he said.

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