A Kings Langley company boss plans to use his knighthood to stand up for innovation and industry.
Sir Hossein Yassaie of Imagination Technologies, on the Home Park Estate, is proud to be counted as a knight alongside Sir Peter Higgs, who worked out the existence of the subatomic so-called God Particle that bears his name.
Sir Hossein, 56, who is married with two daughters and lives in the Chalfont area of Buckinghamshire, sees his knighthood for services to technology and innovation as recognition for industry and for business people to ‘give it a go’.
He says the award has opened so many doors and he intends to use that influence to speak out to encourage an entrepreneurial spirit and confidence in this country.
He would like to see politicians encourage greater use of electronic innovation in the public services.
Born in Iran, Sir Hossein came to the UK as a teenager and passed A-Levels inside six months. He believes British people should be more confident about their abilities.
He said: “I remember being asked how are we in Kings Langley going to be able to compete with the US and Japan. I said I would show them how but I needed their total belief and commitment. It’s about getting people to do better than they think they can.”
Imagination Technologies has grown from being valued at £6million and employing 30 people to a global entity with 1,300 employees, 900 of them in the UK and with plans to continue to grow. The company invents the software that powers electronic devices including mobile phones and tablets.
Sir Hossein’s stroke of commercial genius was to anticipate how important mobile phones and tablet devices were becoming in people’s lives. He joined Video Logic in Kings Langley in 1992-93 and refocused the business.
The firm’s products are the power behind Apple’s iPhones and iPads, various Samsung Galaxy handsets and tablets, and a range of devices from Sony and LG. He became Imagination Technologies’ chief executive in June 1998.
Sir Hossein sees interconnected smart TVs as a growth area but he wouldn’t reveal the company’s specific plans.