Corvalent, a company that designs custom motherboards and computer systems, has opened an office on Meadows Road in Lake Oswego where it will anchor its expanding operations in the Pacific Northwest.

Headed by Lake Oswego resident Thomas Krueger, now vice president of business development for Corvalent, the company recently changed its name from American Predator to better reflect growing operations worldwide.

Corvalent designs motherboards and systems for embedded (non-PC) computers. The company's applications range from controls for medical devices, machine tooling and factory automation to robotics, lottery and gaming machines, point-of-sale systems, printing equipment and defense and surveillance technology.

Using customer specifications, Corvalent builds custom products for clients, Krueger said, or they can draw from a selection of off-the-shelf boards and systems to suit client needs.

Those buyers choose whether to integrate the designs on their own or use Corvalent or its partners to load new products.

'We would be one-stop shopping for your system solution,' Krueger said, adding that the products are more rugged than is often found at the big-box electronics stores - designed with a longer life and to withstand shock, vibration and other harsh conditions.

'Our customers are customers that could utilize what we call our motherboards or industrial controllers for their longevity, reliability and performance and consistency,' he said.

Corvalent offers designs based on the latest Intel microprocessors, aiming chiefly for longevity. Krueger said the products carry a five- to eight-year production guarantee that reduces customer redesign and recertification costs down the road.

The company is an affiliate member of the Intel Communications Alliance, a community of developers that provide standards-based solutions on Intel technologies.

Working from Intel's Embedded Roadmap, which guarantees five to seven years' support for their products, Corvalent aims to design systems that evolve as PC technology advances.

'If you've got a medical company, for example, and they try to design a system and go through FDA approval for that system, they need to know that the system won't expire with a typical PC lifecycle,' Krueger said.

He said Corvalent's edge is in guaranteeing a long lifecycle for its products, keeping long-term costs low, and offering expertise in materials and handling.

'There's a big difference between us and what we would call a contract manufacturer,' he said. 'A lot of companies provide a low cost entry to get your business but they fail to provide the longevity that we can provide.'

Krueger said products are designed and tested in the United States with some manufacture in China, but most in the Silicon Valley.

Based in Morgan Hill, Calif., Corvalent was founded in 1993 by a group of Silicon Valley investors. Now a company of 50 employees, the Corvalent team includes engineers, sales and marketing staff, materials and production staff and a chief technical officer.

Krueger is currently the company's only Oregon employee, operating out of an office at 4800 SW Meadows Road.

Krueger said he joined Corvalent to help the company get a better foothold in the Pacific Northwest. He previously held strategic alliance and marketing positions with Intel, where he worked for seven years.

Krueger said he chose Lake Oswego as the site of the company's new office in part to be close to home, to the freeway and to have reasonable airport access. He said he also wanted to join the active business community on Kruse Way, where a related address would reflect well on Corvalent's new presence in Oregon.

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