EE Times latest Silicon 60, our list of emerging startups, adds 17 innovators in version 14.0. (Our version 13.0 list, from April, is here. The newcomers include EDA, memory technology and processor companies along with sensors and haptics, wireless communications, power semiconductors, optoelectronics, audio and security.
Silicon 60 companies are selected based on a mix of
criteria, including: technology, intended market, maturity, financial
position, investment profile and executive leadership. Most importantly, they're emerging companies we believe are important to follow. The version 14.0 newcomers are highlighted in red.
ActLight SA (Lausanne, Switzerland), founded in 2010, by Serguei
Okhonin, is a fabless semiconductor company developing designs and
intellectual property for the combination of light and logic on silicon
chips, including the use of CMOS for optical conversion for use in
energy harvesting. www.act-light.com
Adapteva Inc. (Lexington, Mass.), founded in 2008, Adapteva is a
lean startup that has developed the Epiphany architecture of multicore
processors. Adapteva, led by founder Anders Olofsson, is targeting
defense and mobile consumer applications. The company claims to have
reached break-even point with less than $2 million of investment. www.adapteva.com
Adesto Technologies Corp. (Sunnyvale, Calif.) was founded by CEO
Narbeh Derhacobian in 2006. The company is developing a nonvolatile
memory based on programmable metallization cell technology licensed from
Axon Technologies Corp., a spinoff of Arizona State University. The
company is backed by Arch Venture Partners and Applied Ventures amongst
other venture capital companies. www.adestotech.com
Amantys Ltd. (Cambridge, England)
was established by former ARM executives in 2010 as a power electronics
company. The company aims to use digital control to transform power
electronics in medium- and high-voltage applications. The company is
backed by Moonray Investors and ARM Holdings plc. www.amantys.com
Ambiq Micro Inc. (Westlake Hills, Texas) founded in 2010, is a
fabless chip company developing low power wireless processors based on
ARM architecture and mixed-signal systems. Investors include Cisco
Systems and ARM Holdings. www.ambiqmicro.com
Andes Technology Corp. (Hsinchu, Taiwan), founded in 2005, is a
developer and licensor of 32-bit processor technology and associated SoC
platforms intended for a variety of embedded applications. The
company’s U.S.-trained founders are aiming Andes cores at the borders of
markets owned by established licensors such ARM, MIPS and Tensilica. www.andestech.com
Ausdia Inc. (Sunnyvale, Calif.) is a
timing verification EDA company formed in 2006 which commenced product
development in 2008. The company's TimeVision product is a timing
constraints development tool intended to help with static timing
analysis and sign-off for complex system-on-chip designs www.ausdia.com
Avalanche Technology Inc. (Fremont
Calif.) is a attempting to bring to market a form of magnetic random
access memory for memory and storage applications. Founded in 2006, the
company received $30 million in venture capital funding in mid-2012. www.avalanche-technology.com
Brite Semiconductor (Shanghai) Corp.
(Shanghai, China) was founded in 2008 in Zhangjiang Hi-tech Park. It is
an SoC and ASIC design company that pulls together intellectual
property, foundry, test and packaging technologies to create custom
silicon for its customers. Brite is backed by local foundry
Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp. and Open-Silicon Inc.
(Milpitas, Calif.). www.britesemi.com
Calxeda Inc. (Austin, Texas) was founded in 2008 under the name
Smooth-Stone and is developing server-on-a-chip processors based on
multiple ARM processor cores. The company has received $48 million in
investments from venture capital funds and strategic investors including
ARM, ATIC and Texas Instruments. www.calxeda.com
Cognivue Corp. (Gatineau, Quebec)
was spun off in 2009 from Korea's MtekVision to focus on so-called
cognitive processing, that is, parallel processing engines optimized for
tasks like image recognition and identification. CogniVue provides
SoCs, software and IP to capture, analyze, and render video and images
for smart cameras. www.cognivue.com
Cosmic Circuits Inc. (Bangalore, India), founded in 2005, is a
licensor of analog and mixed-signal intellectual property circuits
cores. The company provides a broad spectrum of IP ranging from power
management, audio and voice to data converters, clocking circuits and
analog front-end subsystems. www.cosmiccircuits.com
Cyclos Semiconductor Inc. (Berkeley, Calif.) was founded in 2006
as a spin-out from the University of Michigan. Based in Berkeley and Ann
Arbor, Cyclos delivers resonant clock mesh semiconductor IP, design
automation tools, and design consulting services for resonant clock mesh
designs that can reduce the power consumption of clock circuits on ICs.
Nujira was a member of the Silicon 60 for a number of iterations.
As far as I remember the company was founded in 2002 and at 10 or 11 years old they are still private, but it is hard to class them as a startup.
You wrote, "To make way for newcomers, some companies have dropped off the list either because they have been acquired, moved on to an initial public offering of shares or have simply matured."
My question is, "Are there no dropouts due to failure?" That's astounding that EETimes is able to always pick 60 companies that never fail. VCs on the other hand fully expect over half their investments to fail. And most entrepreneurs will tell you that they learned more from failing than succeeding. At least in America, failure is not a dirty word. We should here about those stories as well if for no other reason than to know what didn't fly.
Also, I note that Quantance is on the list but not Nujira. Nujira is making substantially more progress in the exact same space with a substantially larger patent portfolio.
Kudos to Indians working at Silicon valley.Almost in about half of the companies there is an Indian as founder or co founder.It would have been great had more companies from Bangalore would be there in this list but 2 are still there.
So when is a startup no longer a startup? Some of these companies got their start 5-6 years ago. Do you get to stay on the list until you get acquired or your investors finally give up?
Maybe you should consider doing an expose on mid stage companies.... separate from start-ups... Startups should have an expiration date... maybe 3 yrs from founding...
Bob @ JVD
Things have changed in the last decade. It takes longer to get more complex technologies to market successfully.
The days of back-of-the-envelope business plan, $20 million invested, IPO and 10X ROI are said to be long gone.
VCs are not more patient but sometimes they are prepared to keep punting money if they think their proteges have a chance.
For the first few years of many startups' existence they say very little or nothing. Some don't have websites to avoid the risk of revealing anything. This, by definition, makes them companies that are difficult to watch.
But we do keep track of younger companies.
The other thing that is changing and has been remarked on many times is that VC money for semiconductor companies is increasingly scarse.
More than half the companies (32 out of 60) were founded in 2007 or earlier. There was a time when a start-up company was considered a dead-end after three or four years maximum. Perhaps something has changed in the past decade. Perhaps the VCs are more patient nowadays, or your list is highly skewed and it is not tracking the younger startups up close.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.