September 13th, 2005
Agoura Closes Series A Investment Round
Agoura Technologies, based in Sacramento, California, has closed on an investment from American
River Ventures. Agoura is involved in the development of nanotechnology-based optical films that have applications in the
semiconductor, display, storage and wireless industries. The company’s CEO is Mike Little; former Chief Technology Officer
of Solus Micro Technologies, optical MEMS based tunable filter company. Mr. Little has been awarded over 39 patents and has
six patents pending.
September 12th, 2005
Global Silicon Raises $10 Million in Digital Audio Chip
Global Silicon, a fabless semiconductor company with boombox audio chips, has raised $10 million
in additional funding. The funding was led by Quester, but also included funding from Celtic House and MTI Partners. The funds
are expected to add to the company’s product line and operation expansion efforts in the United Kingdom and China. According
to Bill Jeffrey, Chairman of Global Silicon, “This is a very important step for the company. This new capital will be
used to recruit new engineers and further develop our software and chip design resources in Cambridge, application engineers
in Fenggang, China and strengthen our management team with the appointment of a CEO. Our lead product, Xin is currently being
sold in audio systems in the UK and Europe and we will introduce further audio products during 2006. I am very pleased to
have gained the support of three leading venture capital houses.”
Global Silicon, which was founded in 2000, has developed a solution
for CD digital audio players, the Xin chip. Global reports that its chip sales to audio companies based in China have been
growing rapidly. The company also indicated that it would utilize its Intellectual Property to expand into other consumer
markets. Global Silicon’s Xin chip entered production in late 2004.
September 9th, 2005
NemeriX, a fabless GPS Chipset Company based in Switzerland, has closed a 25 million Series B financing round. Investors
in the round included leading EDA vendor Cadence Design Systems along with Oak Investment partners and all of the company’s
Series A investors: Atila Ventures, Auriga Partners, PolyTechnos Venture-Partners, and VI Partners, participated.
NemeriX, focused on the Location Based Services market for mobile handsets, indicated that market combined with applications
in automotive navigations, asset tracking and other GPS markets should be worth 4.5 billion Euros in 2006.
NemeriX considers its chipsets the leader in low power consumption, reporting a 70 percent improvement over competitors.
Bandel Carano, General Partner at Oak, who is now on the NemeriX Board, sees the low power solution as key to winning GSP
markets such as cellular phones, “Oak strongly believes in the growth potential of existing and emerging GPS applications
and the importance of low power to penetrate these market. NemeriX has both the RF and GPS expertise, as well as the lowest
power, high performance solutions to be a leader in this exciting space.
Pointing out that NermriX also has already won major accounts was Eric Achtmann, Managing Partner at PolyTechnos,
“NemeriX has proven itself over the past year, gaining significant traction, winning major design-ins, and attracting
an exceptional team… the addition of Oak and significant capital will go far to help NemeriX realize its full potential”.
September 8th, 2005
Pelikon Raises 5 Million Pounds
for Low-Cost Plastic Display Effort – Shipments Pass the Million Mark
Pelikon Ltd., a plastic display company that already has numerous
customers, has secured £5 million (approximately $9 million) in a new funding round. The funding round included investments
from Advent Venture Partners, Gartmore, VCF and Wales Fund Managers. KBC Peel Hunt also introduced new investors to the round,
which brought in 4 million pounds.
With the investment, Mike Powell, Pelikon’s CEO listed his
company’s successes, “Pelikon has made remarkable progress with the commercialisation of pSEL display technology.
Our current customers include companies with global reputations including Universal Electronics Inc, (NASDAQ: UEIC), Fossil
(NASDAQ FOSL) and electrical appliance company Salton Inc (NYSE: SFP).“ He also indicated the possibility of an AMI
listing, “ This new funding allows us to accelerate our growth curve while at the same time positioning ourselves for
the possibility of an AIM listing in 12 to 18 months. These are exciting times for the company and we are delighted to welcome
new investors alongside our existing funding partners.”
Pelikon’ points out that its cost-competitive pSEL display
technology is used to formed and cut displays for specific applications. The pSEL displays, which are less than a half
a millimeter in width, have been shipped in large quantities. The company reported that over one million of its plastic displays
have been delivered to customers.
Pelikon is currently collaborating with Cambridge University on
the development of hybrid displays for applications in such products as cellular headset, a market estimated at about 600
million units per year.
September 8th, 2005
Shellcase Ltd., a company that has a significant share in the camera phone image sensor packaging
market, has obtained $19.4 million in a funding round to further its chip-scale package business model. The company received
funding from GlenRock Israel, Infinity Venture Capital Fund, the Korea Global IT Fund, Platinum Neurone Ventures, and China
Singapore Venture Capital. Shellcase indicated that it has planned to use the funding to further its sales, marketing and
development activities in the wafer packaging solutions market.
Furthermore, the funding is expected to create an IP business model. According to Amir Gal-Or,
Managing Director of Infinity, "This investment has enabled a significant change in the Shellcase business model, from a model
of providing contract manufacturing to one of technology licensing and IP development. This model makes the most sense for
Israeli companies, and Shellcase's new focus has already borne fruit through its strategic manufacturing partnership in China."
Shalom Daskal, Shellcase CEO, also indicated that the funding would enable the company’s
further advance into the cellular phone chip packaging market, "Shellcase has a phenomenal technology, a loyal customer base,
and strong intellectual property. The investment will allow the company to bolster its already-strong position in the camera
phone market and to focus on developing the next generation of miniaturization technologies and IP for optical devices."
Shellchase’s image sensor package solutions are used in camera cellular phones from Sanyo,
Omnivision, Pixelplus and others. The company also offers package solutions for RF-MEMS devices.
September 8th, 2005
Kotura, Inc, a company that designs, manufacturers and markets silicon photonic devices, has
secured $13 million in a Series 2 round of preferred stock financing. The financing was led by a new investor, GF Private
Equity Group. The Viterbi Group, ComVentures and ARCH Venture Partners contributed to the round.
Kotura, which has an in-house CMOS wafer fabrication facility, offers CMOS optical components
that offer current controlled optical attenuation. The devices are used to provide near real-time power management in optical
September 7th, 2005
iCurie, Inc. (OTC:ICUR), a company that has developed nanocooling
technology for the electronics market, has opened a manufacturing facility in Furu Industrial Park in Seoul, Korea. That facility
has been reported to have a capacity of 700,000 cooling devices per year and can be expanded to a capacity of 1.2 million
units a year. The facility took less than six months from the time the decision to build the facility to the time the facility
With the opening of the facility, iCurie’s partners are expected
to have test samples to verify that their iCurie based nanocooling devices will work. According to Chief Technology Officer
at iCurie, Dr. Jeong Hyun Lee, "We now have the resources and capabilities to rapidly supply up to 500 test units from a real
manufacturing environment. With this facility in place, we have become a full solution provider in the field of thermal heat
ICurie, with the announcement, reported that it had received a grant
from the Korean Small Business Administration.
September 6th, 2005
Quellan Obtains $12 Million
In Series B – Technology to Improve Data Transmission Rates 400 Percent
Quellan Incorporated, a company that has won awards for its signal
integrity analog chips, has closed $12 million in a Series B funding round led by Menlo Ventures. Quellan plans to use the
funds to expand its market presence in a wide variety of markets where narrowband and wideband signal interference have traditionally
limited full-speed communications. These markets include broadcast, enterprise, computing, consumer and mobile handset, storage
Indicating that the company has already seen an unprecedented demand
for its easy to implement, plug-and-go chip technology was Tony Stelliga, Chairman and CEO at Quellan, "The demand for improved
signal integrity and noise cancellation is overwhelming based on our initial product deployment and has been found to be highly
applicable in many other markets. These new funds enable us to quickly expand into these new found market opportunities."