Qualcomm hires new top lobbyist

Qualcomm has hired Greg Farmer as its new vice president for government affairs. Farmer, who will lead Qualcomm's Washington office, was formerly senior vice president of global government relations and international trade at Nortel. Before that, he was Undersecretary of Commerce under President Bill Clinton.

A few of the issues Farmer intends to tackle in the coming months: universal broadband, the innovation agenda and patent reform.

"We're a great success story that's really not that well-known or understood in Washington, and we intend to change that," Farmer said in a short phone interview yesterday.

"We're all about innovation. We're enabling mobile technology to enhance people's lives and developing entrepreneurship," he said. "It lines up nicely with what the administration and Congress are doing."

Farmer is pushing sustained research and development activity. He also said, since Qualcomm's business model relies on patent licensing, "we feel very strongly that for our well-being we have to maintain incentives for innovation to flourish and strengthen. If that means a company like ours spends a lot of money on innovations for the future, we need to have a return on them."