Limerick chip firm Powervation raises US$10m in VC round

30 Jul 2009

A Limerick technology company that has the ambition to create up to 150 jobs in the next two years has raised an additional US$10m in venture capital funding from an A-list of electronics industry investors.

The company, which has already raised a previous US$10m from investors that include Intel Capital, the Venture Tech Alliance and SEP, Europe’s largest semiconductor fund, will use the extra funding to broaden its global sales and marketing as well as advance its R&D initiatives.

Participants in the latest round include SEP, Intel Capital, Venture Tech Alliance and Fourth Level Ventures.

Powervation, which also has offices in California, China and Cork and employs 35 people worldwide – 25 of whom are in Limerick – grew out of the Circuits and Systems Research Centre at the University of Limerick and benefited from the Enterprise Ireland-backed Power Electronics Industry Group.

The funding follows last month’s launch of Powervation’s first digital power-conversion IC-the PV3002, a move that brings fully automatic adaptive control to DC/DC conversion for the first time. 

Central to the IC is Auto-controlT, a unique algorithm that monitors output voltage on a cycle-by-cycle basis and automatically compensates for variations in line, load, capacitance and inductance. 

For designers of complex electronic systems used in computing, networking and storage applications, this innovation means better system efficiency and performance, and energy savings of up to 30pc. It also reduces design time-from weeks to days, and cuts total system cost of ownership by more than 30pc.

“Having hit key technology milestones and now, commercialised our first product, we’re gratified that our investors continue to champion our efforts, especially in today’s challenging environment,” explained Powervation’s chief executive officer, Antoin Russell (pictured).

“Optimising energy management in advanced electronics systems has become a corporate imperative for manufacturers of these products, not just to meet their aggressive eco-priorities, but also to deliver the most economically efficient products to their customers.

“We’re excited to enable their efforts with a technology that transforms how energy is delivered and managed within these products. We appreciate our investors’ confidence in our execution and we value their contribution as we continue to build a strong technology company,” Russell added.

By John Kennedy

Pictured: Powervation’s chief executive officer Antoin Russell

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years