EETimes美国版最近公布了 11.0版的「全球60家新创半导体公司榜(Silicon 60)」，这份半导体产业新秀名单是自2004年4月首度公开，可反映最新的企业经营、商业、科技与市场现况，榜单中的新创公司来自模拟、内存、逻辑、电源、微机电系统(MEMS)、光电、EDA软件、晶圆代工、半导体生产设备、子系统、封装与材料等领域，评选标准为技术实力、目标市场、成熟度、财务装况、投资组合以及经营团队领导能力。
在11.0版的Silicon 60榜单中，有13家是新进厂商，其余有的公司可能曾出现在今年4月份公布的10.0版榜单上、新一版却消失，主要是因为被收购、已公开上市(IPO)，或者是已经不符合「新创公司」的资格。特别一提的是，也列名11.0版的 Blue Wonder Communications这家公司，在榜单完成后不久就被收归英飞凌(Infineon)无线芯片业务部门，因此EETimes美国版也考虑要发表11.1版的更新内容。
这60家半导体业界新星大多数是美国公司，少数来自加拿大与欧洲的德国、英国、爱尔兰、荷兰、法国，并有来自中国的两家业者(未包括台湾厂商)。11.0版新进榜的13家厂商分别是(依公司名称英文字母顺序)：Arveni、Dockon、Fresco Logic、Lyric Semiconductor、Maskless Lithography、Movea、Pixel Qi 、Polyteda Software、Seeo、SuVolta、Ubidyne、Vector Fabrics、Verayo；其他详细榜单内容请参考原文。
(参考原文： EE Times updates ‘Silicon 60’ list of emerging startups，by Peter Clarke)
The companies: A-F
Achronix Semiconductor Corp. (San Jose, Calif.) was founded in 2004 and is associated with Cornell University, from which it has licensed patents. In 2008, Achronix introduced FPGAs that operate at clock frequencies up to 1.5 GHz.
Adesto Technologies Corp. (Sunnyvale, Calif.) was founded by CEO Narbeh Derhacobian in 2006 and is developing a nonvolatile memory based on programmable metallization cell (PMC) technology licensed from Axon Technologies Corp., a spinoff of Arizona State University. The company is backed by Arch Venture Partners and Applied Ventures, among other venture capital companies.
Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment Inc. (AMEC; Shanghai, China), founded in 2004, has been described as the Applied Materials of China. AMEC has introduced its initial tools, unveiled its strategy and disclosed plans to go public. It has also locked horns with Applied Materials in legal disputes.
*Arveni SA (Cremieux, France), founded in 2007, designs, produces and sells microgenerators for energy harvesting.
AutoESL Design Technologies Inc. (Cupertino, Calif.) is offering a product based on high-level synthesis technology licensed from University of California–Los Angeles. It was founded in 2006.
Avnera Corp. (Beaverton, Ore.) is a fabless developer of analog system chips for consumer electronics, mainly in the audio sector. It was founded in early 2004 and has raised $52 million to date in four rounds of financing from Altien Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, Best Buy Capital, DAG Ventures, Intel Capital, Jafco Ventures, Onkyo Corp., Panasonic Venture Group, Polycom Corp. and Redpoint Ventures.
Baolab Microsystems SL (Barcelona, Spain) is pioneering the creation of microelectromechanical systems within the back-end-of-line structure of CMOS wafers. It is applying its MEMS technology initially to the field of switching for miniature RF relays inside CMOS, enabling smaller mobile phones. Baolab was founded in July 2003 and is backed by venture capital fund FonsInnocat.
Black Sand Technologies Inc. (Austin, Texas) was formed in 2005. The fabless semiconductor company has produced an RF power amplifier in CMOS for 3G communications.
Blue Wonder Communications GmbH (Dresden, Germany) was founded in 2008 and provides LTE intellectual property. The company concluded a funding round in 2009 and claims to already have orders for its technology.
Boston Power Inc. (Westborough, Mass.) was founded in 2005 and has made progress in developing longer-lasting, faster-charging lithium-ion batteries.
Cognovo Ltd. (Melbourn, U.K.) was founded in July 2009 by the four founders of TTPCom, a developer of protocol stacks for mobile communications that rose to prominence in the 1990s. Cognovo plans to offer software for licensing to developers of software-defined modems with a business model similar to that of TTPCom but aimed at 4G communications. ARM transferred some personnel and intellectual property to the company and took an equity stake in October 2009.
Direct2Silicon Inc. (San Jose) is a venture-backed company providing software and IP to enable direct-write e-beam lithography for the production of system-on-chip ICs.
*Dockon Inc. (Reno, Nev.) has developed a novel antenna technology that combines electrical and magnetic elements to achieve new levels of efficiency for a range of wireless systems.
Efficient Power Conversion Corp. (EPC; El Segundo, Calif.) was founded in November 2007 by three engineers with experience in advanced power management devices. EPC’s CEO, Alex Lidow, is the co-inventor of the HEXFET power MOSFET and, in addition to holding positions in R&D and manufacturing, was the CEO of International Rectifier for 12 years.
Energy Micro A/S (Oslo, Norway), founded by CEO Geir Forre in 2007, develops ARM-based microcontrollers for low-power and battery-operated applications.
Everspin Technologies Inc. (Chandler, Ariz.) was formed as a spinoff of the MRAM activities of Freescale Semiconductor Inc. in 2008.
*Fresco Logic Inc. (Beaverton, Ore.) was founded in 2008 and has developed a controller chip for the USB 3.0 communication specification.
The companies: G-L
G24 Innovations Ltd. (Cardiff, U.K.) is a pioneer of dye-sensitized thin-film solar cells. The company, founded in 2006, raised $50 million in 2008 and claims it is the first commercial manufacturer of Graetzel dye-sensitized solar cell technology for mass consumer use.
GainSpan Corp. (Sunnyvale), a developer of Wi-Fi sensor network technology, was an Intel incubator company before being spun out in 2006. It completed a Series B funding round in December 2007, raising $20 million with backing from Intel Capital.
GreenPeak Technologies BV (Utrecht, Netherlands) was formed through the merger of Xanadu Wireless and Ubiwave in July 2007. Xanadu had been operating in stealth mode since early 2005; Ubiwave had been pioneering wireless mesh protocols since 2003. GreenPeak, backed by DJF Esprit, GIMV, Motorola Ventures and Allegro Investment Fund, offers wireless transceiver chips with energy-harvesting-ready interfaces for use in wireless sensor networks.
Heliatek GmbH (Dresden, Germany) was formed in 2006 as a spinoff from the Universities of Dresden and Ulm. The company has developed organic solar cells from small molecule organic dyes that are chemically synthesized from hydrocarbons. Recent funding of $27 million is earmarked for building an initial production facility in Dresden. Heliatek will use its technology to produce flexible photovoltaic modules on a film substrate.
InVisage Technologies Inc. (Menlo Park, Calif.) is developing QuantumFilm, an imaging-sensing technology that the fabless company claims will replace silicon. Its first product enables high-fidelity, high-resolution images from handheld devices like camera phones and PDAs. InVisage was founded in 2006 and is venture funded by RockPort Capital, Charles River Ventures, InterWest Partners and OnPoint Technologies.
LensVector Inc. (Mountain View, Calif.) was founded in 2006 to commercialize optical technology that can shape, steer and focus light without mechanical movement. It has attracted more than $50 million in financing from investors and partners, including Menlo Ventures, Institutional Venture Partners, Samsung, Silicon Valley Bank, Mitsui and Kodak.
Lime Microsystems Ltd. (Guildford U.K.), founded in March 2005, is a fabless specialist in digitally configurable transceivers for wireless broadband systems. Lime has development teams in the U.K. and Lithuania. It is backed by ACT Venture Capital and DFJ Esprit.
Liquavista BV (Eindhoven, Netherlands) was formed in 2006 to develop a display technology based on the principle of electrowetting. The company is preparing displays for e-readers.
*Lyric Semiconductor Inc. (Cambridge, Mass.) is a fabless semiconductor company founded in 2006 by MIT's Ben Vigoda and semiconductor veteran David Reynolds. Lyric’s probability processing technology has some similarities to both fuzzy logic and neural networking. Lyric has received more than $20 million in government funding from the Defense Research Advanced Projects Agency and other agencies. Stata Venture Partners is a venture investor.
The companies: M-R
*Maskless Lithography Inc. (San Jose), a 2005 startup led by a group of electronics industry veterans, is offering direct-write digital imaging technology for pc board production. Its first product is the MLI-2027 direct-write lithography system.
MaxIC Technology Corp. (Beijing), a fabless IC design company with operations in Shenzhen and Hong Kong, was founded in March 2008 by a group of overseas returnees with both senior management and technical experience. It focuses on designing, developing and marketing advanced analog, mixed-signal and power management integrated circuits.
MimoOn GmbH (Duisberg, Germany), founded in 2006, supplies a software implementation of the 3GPP LTE physical layer and protocol stack for infrastructure devices and terminals.
Mirics Semiconductor Inc. (Fleet, U.K.), a fabless RF and mixed-signal chip startup founded in 2004, has developed software demodulation technology that can be used with its reconfigurable tuner to receive multiple broadcast standards.
*Movea SA (San Jose) is a provider of motion processing chips, software, embeddable firmware and IP for consumer electronics. Formed in March 2007 as a spinout from French research institute CEA-Leti, Movea acquired the Gyration consumer electronics brand in 2008.
Movidius Ltd. (Dublin, Ireland), founded as Movidia in 2005, is a fabless semiconductor company whose processor and application software delivers video editing and post-production capabilities for the creation of user-generated content for mobile social networking. Movidius, with offices in Dublin and Hong Kong and a software development center in Romania, is backed by Celtic House Venture Partners, Capital-E, Emertec Gestion, AIB Seed Capital Fund and Enterprise Ireland.
Nano ePrint Ltd. (Manchester, U.K.) was formed in 2006 to commercialize technology developed at the University of Manchester. Nano ePrint’s technology enables planar nanoelectronic circuits to be fabricated via single-step patterning. Nano ePrint has also developed a configurable circuit architecture to deliver the world’s first printed programmable logic circuits.
OneChip Photonics Inc. (Ottawa), founded in 2005, develops and manufactures low-cost, high-performance optical transceivers based on monolithic photonic ICs using indium phosphide. The devices are used for access networks and other mass-market broadband applications.
OneSpin Solutions GmbH (Munich, Germany) is an Infineon Technologies spinoff, founded in 2005, that focuses on formal assertion-based verification tools for system-on-chip, ASIC and FPGA designs.
Open Kernel Labs (Chicago), with origins in Australia, develops “virtualization software” for mobile phones and broadband devices. The company was founded in 2006 and raised $7.6 million in venture capital in 2009.
Ozmo Devices Inc. (Palo Alto, Calif.), founded in 2004 as H-Stream Wireless, develops wireless personal area network connectivity for battery-operated devices based on Wi-Fi communications.
Parallel Engines Corp. (Cupertino) was founded in April 2008 with the goal of bringing together the EDA and semiconductor intellectual property worlds. With design moving to extensive IP block reuse, Parallel Engines is attempting to integrate many vendors from the supply chain into the design team.
*Pixel Qi Corp. (San Bruno, Calif.) designs liquid-crystal displays that can be operated in black-and-white reflective mode (with the backlight switched off) in ambient light, allowing for significant power savings. The LCDs can be produced on conventional fabrication equipment. The company was formed in 2008 by Mary Lou Jepson, who had previously served as CTO of the One Laptop per Child project.
*Polyteda Software Corp. (Toronto) was co-founded in 2005 by Vlad Marchuk to develop physical verification EDA tools. Marchuk, now Polyteda’s president and CEO, graduated from Kiev Polytechnical Institute in 1988 and helped develop the OTTO layout debugger before heading up Cadence’s R&D team in Moscow.
Powervation Ltd. (Limerick, Ireland), founded in 2006, is a fabless semiconductor startup that has produced a digital control chip for power converters.
Quantenna Communications Inc. (Sunnyvale), founded in 2006, is a developer of silicon for wireless networking that delivers guaranteed wireless bandwidth.
Rayspan Corp. (San Diego), founded in 2006, is an innovator in metamaterial air interface technology for wireless communications. Metamaterials provide improvements in antenna and RF front-end component miniaturization. Rayspan’s solutions support fixed and mobile wireless WAN and LAN applications, including all 2/3/4G cellular handsets, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS.
RedMere Technology Ltd. (Dublin) is developing chips for HDMI connectors to support multigigabit/second wireline communications. The company has raised about $19 million since its founding in 2004 and has released its first chips.
RFaxis Inc. (Irvine, Calif.), founded January 2008, uses BiCMOS process technology in conjunction with its own technology to create integrated RF front-end ICs for wireless standards including Bluetooth, WLAN, Zigbee, WiMax and mobile phone markets.
The companies: S-Z
Samplify Systems Inc. (Santa Clara, Calif.), founded in 2006, is a fabless mixed-signal semiconductor company that combines digital processing and high-performance analog to create intelligent data converters.
*Seeo Inc. (Berkeley, Calif.) was founded in 2007 with an exclusive license to advanced technology from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the goal of creating high-energy rechargeable lithium ion batteries. Seeo was established with initial funding from Khosla Ventures.
SiBeam Inc. (Sunnyvale) was founded in December 2004 by a team from the Berkeley Wireless Research Center, along with several wireless and high-speed communications industry veterans. The company claims to be the first to have built 60-GHz chip sets using CMOS technology.
SiliconBlue Technologies Corp. (Santa Clara) has developed a range of FPGAs designed for low power and aimed at handheld, mobile applications. Kapil Shankar, a 20-year veteran of the programmable logic industry, founded the company in late 2005.
SiOnyx Inc. (Beverly, Mass.) has licensed a portfolio of shallow-junction photonics patents developed by Harvard University in exchange for an unspecified equity stake and downstream royalties. Eric Mazur and James Carey founded the company in 2006 to exploit the optoelectronic properties of so-called black silicon.
Socowave Ltd. (Dublin), founded in 2008, has connections with University College Dublin. The company, founded by CEO Joe Moore, offers active panel antenna technology, which lets mobile phone operators apply beamforming to improve cellular efficiency as basestations communicate with handsets.
Solido Design Automation Inc. (San Ramon, Calif.) was founded in 2005 to address process variation for transistor-level designers. Solido has developed a proprietary set of algorithms that forms the core of its technology.
SpectraWatt Inc. (Hopewell Junction, N.Y.), a maker of solar cells, was founded in June 2008 from assets spun out of Intel Corp. and complemented by a $50 million Series A round from investors including Intel Capital, Goldman Sachs and solar module maker Solon SE. SpectraWatt constructed its first solar cell factory in 2009.
*SuVolta Inc. (Los Gatos, Calif.), a startup formed in 2005 as DSM Solutions Inc., has revealed some details its plan to achieve low-power IC operation through the use of complementary junction FET technology.
Tiempo SA (Grenoble, France), founded in 2007, specializes in the design of asynchronous ICs and provides IP for asynchronous cores in microcontrollers, microprocessors, cryptoprocessors, and communications and sensor interfaces.
Tilera Corp. (San Jose) develops multicore processors and associated compilers for the networking, wireless and multimedia infrastructure markets. MIT computer science professor Anant Agarwal founded the company in 2004 and is its CTO.
*Ubidyne GmbH (Ulm, Germany) is an embedded antenna and digital wireless specialist. It was launched in 2005 and completed a $43 million series B round in August 2009.
*Vector Fabrics BV (Eindhoven) is developing tools for the design and implementation of multicore, multithreaded applications and embedded systems. Founded in 2007, the company released its first product, vfAnalyst, in May 2010.
*Verayo Inc. (San Jose), formed in 2005 as PUFco, is bringing to market a range of security and authentication technology based on physical unclonable functions. PUFs are physical aspects of a device that are readily evaluated but hard to predict or build in; as such, the physical characteristic can become the basis of a key for security. The technology is based on work originally performed at MIT by professor Srini Devadas and his team.
XMOS Semiconductor Ltd. (Bristol, U.K.), founded by academic computer scientist David May in 2006, is a fabless semiconductor company that has developed a range of ICs based on multiple event-driven processors. Designs are created in high-level languages, delivering hardware from a software-based design flow.