Discera Raises $17.5 Million in Funding
Discera, Inc., the leader in MEMS-based oscillators, announced today the completion of a $17.5 million Series C round of funding led by Scale Venture Partners. Discera, which recently began shipping its first products for direct replacement of quartz crystal oscillators for timing components in electronics devices, will use the funding to support increased production, distribution and marketing. Scale Venture Partners joins previous investors 3i, Partech International and Ardesta LLC. New investor Horizon Ventures also participated in the round.
The company also announced that Jim Jones, Managing Director with ScaleVP, has joined Discera’s board of directors. Jones focuses on emerging semiconductor and MEMS component companies and enterprise systems.
Investors are excited about Discera because quartz crystal is considered to be one of the final hurdles of Moore’s law of scalability. In use for over 50 years for timing applications, quartz oscillators have reached their limit in scalability, cost and manufacturing technology and the electronics industry has long awaited a reliable, scalable, cost-effective alternative. The traditional crystal timing market is estimated to be well over a $3.5 billion market.
“ScaleVP has invested in multiple MEMS companies during the last few years due to the market acceptance of this breakthrough technology,” said Jim Jones. “Discera is at an exciting point, as it has now proven that silicon can replace quartz in the timing market. Given the size of the market, Discera’s leadership in commercializing silicon resonators, the partners that Discera has signed on, and the proven track record of the management team, the company has the ability to become truly disruptive in the semiconductor market.”
Discera recently began shipping its MOS1 oscillator successfully after passing stringent reliability tests, with volume production starting in 2Q07. Discera’s technology consists of a silicon MEMS resonator and an ASIC embedded within a conventional QFN plastic package or ceramic package. Discera is offering the product directly through a worldwide set of channel partners and through industry leaders such as Vectron International.
“This round is a validation of Discera, our position in the market and the maturity of our products,” said Tom Willey, President and CEO, Discera. “With this funding and the product and channel ready, Discera can rapidly capture market share and build a fast-growing business in the timing market.”
Discera has been successfully sampling its product since last year. This past November, Discera demonstrated its technology as a plug-and-play direct replacement of quartz crystal in a camcorder device — the first MEMS demonstration in a consumer device. Key target applications for MEMS-based timing devices are PCs, DVD players, gaming consoles, set top boxes, camcorders, PDAs and cameras as well a variety of industrial products. For more information please contact Discera or visit www.discera.com.
Discera is a fabless analog semiconductor company that offers tiny, high performance silicon resonators for the frequency and timing control markets. These resonators act as the heartbeat or pulse for a variety of devices from consumer products such as cameras and MP3 players to specialized equipment for the military. The company’s PureSilicon(TM) resonator technology is a fundamental building block that offers, according to Semico Research, “a better mousetrap” for creating fully integrated, low cost, small form factor wireline and wireless products, such as oscillators, filters, and RF components. Unlike crystal based oscillators, Discera’s PureSilicon(TM) based CMOS oscillators can be integrated into other CMOS-based circuits. Founded in 2001 and headquartered in San Jose, California, Discera is a privately held company with investments from Ardesta, Partech, 3i, and Qualcomm Ventures. More information is available at www.discera.com.
About Scale Venture Partners
Scale Venture Partners employs a thesis-based strategy to identify innovative development-stage technology and healthcare investments. The ScaleVP team helps technology and healthcare companies accelerate their growth and become more valuable to entrepreneurs, investors and consumers. Based in Foster City, California, the ScaleVP team collectively offers decades of technology and venture industry experience to development-stage companies in hardware, software, healthcare and medical devices. Representative portfolio companies include Alimera, Frontbridge, Glu Mobile, Good Technology, Monolithic Power Systems, Omniture, Orexigen, Placeware, ScanSafe, Seattle Genetics, Somaxon, Wayport and Xceive. For more information, please visit www.scalevp.com.
About Horizon Ventures
Horizon Ventures is a Los Altos, CA-based venture capital partnership with $165M under management. They invest in data and telecom systems, wireless networks, enterprise and technical application software, Internet tools and infrastructure, and semiconductors. Their current portfolio includes iWatt, Inc., NuCore Technology, Advanced Microstructures, and Chelsio Communications. For more information, visit www.horizonvc.com.
Media Contacts for Discera: Venkat Bahl Discera, Inc. 408-432-8600 x228 firstname.lastname@example.org Emilie Harris Lois Paul & Partners 512-638-5321 email@example.com Media Contact for Scale Venture Partners: Carol Sacks Tenor Communications 650-520-8261 firstname.lastname@example.org