Here comes Alif Semiconductor with $70 million

Here comes Alif Semiconductor with $70 million

Business news |
By Peter Clarke

And the company has already secured about $72 million in equity finance according to Securities and Exchange Commission filings, and is employing more than 50 people, according to Linkedin information. An initial round of $22 million in the first half of 2019 was followed up by a $50 million Series B in December 2019.

According to WRVI Capital, a venture capital firm that is backing the company, Alif is developing an expandable MCU architecture that enables rapid product family expansion. The company is developing the main building blocks with a target to expand to multiple dedicated families. The company aspires to be “the next-generation pure-play microcontroller company,” WRVI says of its portfolio member.

The Alif name also came to light amongst a list of licensees and early partners for ARM’s Cortex-M55 and the Ethos-U55 neural processing unit (NPU) cores. These are cores that boost the performance of microcontrollers for edge and embedded equipment and are suitable for IoT applications.

Alif was co-founded early in 2019 by Syed Ali, previously the CEO and chairman of Cavium Networks Inc., a company he also co-founded. Ali was nearly 20 years at Cavium Networks and grew the annual revenue to more than $1 billion and sold the company to Marvell Technology for in excess of $6 billion.

Earlier in his career Ali had spent nearly four years in South Korea working for Samsung Electronics. Between June 1994 and February 1998 Ali launched Samsung into flash memory and CPU manufacturing.

Syed’s co-founder at Alif is Reza Kazerounian, who was general manager of the microcontroller and connectivity business unit at Atmel until its acquisition by Microchip in 2016. Prior to his time at Atmel, Kazerounian held senior positions at Freescale Semiconductor and STMicroelectronics.

Alif Semiconductor already has three locations; its headquarters in Pleasanton, California, an SoC design center in Irvine, California, and a center for software and documentation in Bangalore, India.

Alif is looking for analog and mixed-signal design engineers and digital RTL and verification engineers to work in Irvine.

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