Tuesday, December 20, 2011

EnVerv Raises $12M Round of Financing

SAN JOSE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--EnVerv Inc., an innovative fabless semiconductor company developing high performance Communications System on Chip (SoC) solutions for the Smart Grid market announces the closing of $12M Series B round of funding led by Benchmark Capital. Previous investors, NEA and Walden International participated in the round also.

EnVerv is among a handful of companies working on highly integrated multi-standard (such as G3-PLC, PRIME, S-FSK and EnVerv’s TurboPLC™) narrowband PLC modems. EnVerv’s PLC enable applications in Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI), Solar Inverters, Active Lighting, Industrial Control & Remote Monitoring markets where emphasis on mission critical communications and reliable data transmission across power line networks are required.“Mission critical connectivity is the cornerstone of building reliable smart grids worldwide and EnVerv’s SoC products provide the best solution for smart grid communications,” said Bruce Dunlevie, General Partner at Benchmark Capital. “Successful delivery on an array of high performance Power Line Communications (PLC) SoCs in just over a year is a testament to EnVerv’s laser focused execution and innovative product design. At Benchmark, we look forward to working with EnVerv’s management to help continue with this success.”

“We are very pleased to see Benchmark join our current investors in support of our vision to make EnVerv the leading provider of energy management solutions in the market,” said Shahin Hedayat, Chief Executive Officer of EnVerv. “This investment will enable us to capitalize on our technical achievements to scale customer support and volume production of our high performance multimode PLC chips.”

EnVerv’s PLC technology has been field trialed worldwide and has received customer acceptance in all major markets.

About EnVerv Inc.

EnVerv is a fabless semiconductor company in the United States with Headquarters in San Jose, California and offices in San Diego and Shenzhen, China. EnVerv’s PLC SoC solutions enable high performance communications via Low-Voltage (LV) and Medium-Voltage (MV) power lines with the goal of providing efficient and effective communications means for Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) as well as other power line-based smart control and monitoring applications. Base node and gateway devices’ core features include: Multimode PLC modem (x–FSK, G3, PRIME and TurboPLC™) and worldwide frequency band support from 10KHz to 500KHz. For more information please visit www.enverv.com.

Linear Technology acquires Dust Networks

MILPITAS, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Linear Technology Corporation (NASDAQ: LLTC), a leader in high performance analog integrated circuits, today announced the acquisition of Dust Networks, Inc., a leading provider of low power wireless sensor network (WSN) technology. The acquisition of Dust Networks, based in Hayward, CA, will enable Linear to offer a complete high performance wireless sensor networking solution. Dust Networks’ low power radio and software technology complements Linear’s strengths in industrial instrumentation, power management and energy harvesting technology.

Dust Networks’ proven, low power wireless sensor network technology extends Linear’s product portfolio into key growth areas in industrial process control, data acquisition and energy harvesting. Dust Networks’ ultralow power wireless systems complements Linear’s analog and digital sensor interface ICs, and energy harvesting power management products in applications where measurement of physical parameters has traditionally been impractical or impossible.

Erik Soule, Vice President of Signal Conditioning and High Frequency products for Linear Technology, stated, “Dust Networks offers the lowest power radio technology and most complete networking software for building industrial-grade wireless sensor networks. Combined with Linear’s precision low-power sensor interface products and battery-free energy harvesting technology, we can now offer the industry’s highest performance remote monitoring solutions.”

With the growing importance of machine-to-machine communications to enable remote data acquisition, low power wireless sensing is an emerging solution for many end-markets, including industrial process control, building automation and data center energy management.

Joy Weiss, President of Dust Networks, stated, “Dust Networks and Linear are an excellent fit. We already have very complementary products and customers, and with Linear’s global sales reach we can be at the forefront, enabling sensor networks to go wireless on an even broader scale.”

“Smart Dust” was first conceived by Dr. Kris Pister, founder and chief technologist of Dust Networks, as a simple way to deploy intelligent wireless sensors. Dust Networks pioneered SmartMesh® networks that comprise a self-forming mesh of nodes, or “motes,” which collect and relay data, and a network manager that monitors and manages network performance and sends data to the host application. This technology is now the basis for a number of seminal networking standards. The hallmark of Dust Networks’ technology is that it combines low power, standards-based radio technology, time diversity, frequency diversity, and physical diversity—to assure reliability, scalability, wire-free power source flexibility, and ease-of-use. All motes in a SmartMesh network—even the routing nodes—are designed to run on batteries for years, allowing the ultimate flexibility in placing sensors exactly where they need to go with low cost “peel and stick” installations.

Dust Networks’ customers range from the world’s largest industrial process automation and control providers such as GE and Emerson, to innovative, green companies such as Vigilent and Streetline Networks. Dust Networks’ technology can be found in a variety of monitoring and control solutions, including data center energy management, renewable energy, remote monitoring, and transportation.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Although there will be some transaction related costs, Dust’s ongoing results are not expected to be material in the short term to Linear’s financial statements.

About Dust Networks

Founded in 2002, Dust Networks is a pioneer in the field of wireless sensor networking, and is defining the way to connect smart devices. Using standards-based network technology, Dust Networks provides reliable, resilient and scalable products with advanced network management and comprehensive security features. Dust’s broad portfolio includes SmartMesh®IP, SmartMesh Industrial/WirelessHART™ and ZigBee®. Dust Networks provides complete wireless systems solutions, including IEEE 802.15.4 mote modules, mote-on-chips and network and security management software and hardware. For more information, visit www.dustnetworks.com

About Linear Technology

Linear Technology Corporation, a member of the S&P 500, has been designing, manufacturing and marketing a broad line of high performance analog integrated circuits for major companies worldwide for three decades. The Company’s products provide an essential bridge between our analog world and the digital electronics in communications, networking, industrial, automotive, computer, medical, instrumentation, consumer, and military and aerospace systems. Linear Technology produces power management, data conversion, signal conditioning, RF and interface ICs, and µModule® subsystems. For more information, visit www.linear.com

LT, LTC, LTM, µModule and are registered trademarks of Linear Technology Corp. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Lattice Semiconductor to Acquire SiliconBlue

HILLSBORO, OR--(Marketwire - Dec 9, 2011) - Lattice Semiconductor Corporation (NASDAQLSCC) today announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire SiliconBlue Technologies, a pioneer and leader in Custom Mobile Device™ solutions for the consumer handheld market. Utilizing a single chip, ultra-low power Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) fabric, SiliconBlue's mobileFPGA™ devices enable mobile designers to quickly add features to their mobile platform in areas such as connectivity, memory / storage, sensor management, and video / imaging. SiliconBlue's mobile FPGA devices have already shipped in the millions of units to top tier consumer OEM's.
Under terms of the agreement, Lattice Semiconductor will pay approximately $62 million in cash for SiliconBlue Technologies. The acquisition is subject to standard closing conditions, with a targeted close in the fourth quarter of 2011. Lattice Semiconductor ended the third quarter of 2011 with a cash, cash equivalents and short-term marketable securities balance of $267.2 million.
Darin G. Billerbeck, Lattice Semiconductor's President and Chief Executive Officer, said, "The acquisition of SiliconBlue is aligned with our Strategic Long Range Plan and will help accelerate our growth strategy in the Mobile Consumer market. Silicon Blue will further strengthen our product roadmap by adding a scalable, low cost, low power nonvolatile memory FPGA, along with key personnel and blue chip customers. Kapil Shankar, SiliconBlue's Chief Executive Officer, will join Lattice Semiconductor as Corporate Vice President of the Mobility Business Unit and will be responsible for the Company's mobility product lines."
The mobile consumer market for PLD's includes digital cameras, smartphones, eReaders, tablets, notebooks and netbooks. Key market growth trends include the drive for longer battery life, more natural interfaces, increased functionality, lower cost and reduced weight.
Mr. Shankar commented, "We are excited to be joining the Lattice Semiconductor family. Lattice gives us the global scale, proven market credibility and financial backing to take SiliconBlue to the next phase of its growth. We think our existing customers will immediately benefit from our new global reach and support. We also expect Lattice's added resources and financial strength will give potential new customers confidence in designing in our mobileFPGA solutions as we work to more fully realize the potential of our pioneering technology."
About SiliconBlue:Founded in 2006, privately held SiliconBlue Technologies is the leader in Custom Mobile Device (CMD) solutions, with over 250 active end customers and more than 40 patents. The company offers a total solution for handset applications, including IP, design services and a new class of ultra-low power, single-chip, CMOS SRAM mobileFPGA devices with patented non-volatile configuration memory (NVCM). The company is headquartered in Santa Clara, California, with offices in China, Taiwan, Korea and Japan. SiliconBlue is a privately held company and includes the following investors; BlueRunVentures, Crosslink Capital, NEA, Apex Venture Partners, TSMC and Atlantic Bridge. For more information, please visit our website atwww.siliconbluetech.com.
About Lattice Semiconductor: Lattice is the source for innovative FPGAPLD, programmable Power Management solutions. For more information, visit www.latticesemi.com. Follow Lattice via FacebookRSS and Twitter.

Monday, December 5, 2011

GainSpan Closes $18 Million Series C Financing

San Jose, CA – December 5, 2011 - GainSpan Corporation a leader in low power embedded Wi-Fi solutions, today announced that it has raised $18 million in Series C funding. Hatteras Funds, based in New York and North Carolina, and Mobile Internet Capital, based in Japan, joined in the round along with existing investors Opus Capital, In-Q-Tel, Intel Capital, New Venture Partners, Sigma Partners and Camp Ventures. GainSpan will use the new funds to further development of its next-generation ultra-low power Wi-Fi chip to support growth and maintain its technology leadership.
Over the past year GainSpan has experienced significant quarter to quarter growth in sales, design wins and overall market momentum, with Wi-Fi being accepted more and more as the technology of choice for the Internet of Things. Global demand for low power embedded Wi-Fi is being driven by device manufacturers looking to connect their devices to smartphones, to an existing Wi-Fi infrastructure or to the Internet. With its ultra-low power, highly comprehensive integrated networking stack and ease of use, the company's embedded Wi-Fi is the ideal solution for companies who want to connect all kinds of devices.
"GainSpan is clearly poised to capitalize on what has become a massive move to connect 'things' to the Internet," said Hideaki Yajima, executive director of Mobile Internet Capital, Inc. "Our investment reflects confidence that GainSpan is uniquely positioned in this space and is delivering a compelling technology to help make Wi-Fi the standard for Internet of Things connectivity."
"GainSpan continues to make great strides as an emerging leader in the low-power embedded Wi-Fi space," said Matt Lesesky, Hatteras Funds. "We think the company has the potential to help transform the practice of medicine by enabling remote health and wellness services on a wide scale. They are quickly expanding their footprint in this market and building a compelling business."
"The Internet of Things market is growing dramatically and taking off worldwide. Low power Wi-Fi is being used on more devices than ever before and GainSpan is at the heart of it," said Carl Showalter, general partner at Opus Capital, Inc. "Gainspan's leadership in supplying low power chips with high value software has been instrumental in helping accelerate this promising new market. We are excited to continue our support."
"Being able to attract such world-class companies is the ultimate seal of approval that we are in the right place at the right time with the right solution. While the debate over what wireless technology works best will continue, it's hard to argue with powerful financial backers, real customers and proven, innovative products in a hot market," said Greg Winner, President and CEO of GainSpan.
About GainSpan
GainSpan is a leading ultra-low power embedded Wi-Fi solutions company focused on connecting things wirelessly to the Internet. The company's Wi-Fi chips and modules make it possible to quickly and easily add Wi-Fi to devices, through a serial interface to a device microcontroller. The GainSpan Wi-Fi chip handles all Wi-Fi functionalities, networking and security stacks, accelerating wireless device development cycles. GainSpan solutions feature an ultra low power SoC that consumes just a few µA of standby current and has a few ms of wake-up latency, ideal for battery operated devices requiring long life. Applications for the company’s embedded Wi-Fi include healthcare, smart energy and control and monitoring for industrial, commercial and home markets. Based in San Jose, CA, the company has R&D facilities in Bangalore, India.www.gainspan.com