Wireless chipset developer Wilocity raises $35m

Wilocity will use the proceeds to expand its partnerships and to enter the smartphone market.

Sources inform ''Globes'' that multi-gigabit wireless chipset developer Wilocity Ltd. has raised $35 million. The company began selling its chipsets in 2012. Alan Feld's Vintage Investment Partners and Shlomo Kalish's Jerusalem Global Ventures (JGV) led the investment, and were joined by current investors Benchmark Capital, Sequoia Capital, Tallwood Venture Capital, and strategic investors Marvell Technology Group (Nasdaq: MRVL) and Qualcomm Corporation (Nasdaq: QCOM) unit Atheros, and a new strategic investor.

Wilocity was founded in 2007 by CEO Tal Tamir, COO Danny Rettig, VP communications architecture Gal Basson, and VP products and sales Jorge Myszne. The company has developed a 60 Ghz wireless chipset for mobile computing, consumer electronics, and peripherals. The technology is designed for short-range wireless communications for the home and office, at speeds of 1-5 Gbps, more than ten times faster than the latest wireless protocol, n11, for WiFi. In theory, it could be possible to transmit an 2-gigabyte HD movie within seconds between computers.

Wilocity's breakthrough came earlier this year, when its first products were integrated with Dell Inc. (Nasdaq: DELL) laptops.

Wilocity will use the proceeds to expand its partnerships and to enter the smartphone market. Wilocity VP marketing Mark Grodzinsky says that the plan is to have a product on the market by the end of 2014.

To win a foothold in the PC communications equipment market, Wilocity will have to provide a card with its chipset that will work with older 2.4 Ghz and 5 Ghz short-range wireless frequencies used by WiFi and Bluetooth, respectively. The vision is for a "triband" PC communications card, which will also work with the next-generation protocol.

Wilocity heads the WiGig consortium, which was founded in 2009 to establish the new industry standard by creating uniform specifications to suit current protocols and standards. Several major companies are part of the consortium, including Broadcom Corporation (Nasdaq: BRCM), Dell, Intel Corporation (Nasdaq: INTC), Microsoft Corporation (Nasdaq: MSFT), NEC Corporation (TSE: 6701), Qualcomm, and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (KSX: 5930; LSE: SMSN). Wilocity's first two strategic investors are members of WiGig, and the new strategic investor in the current round may be a member as well. According to IVC, Wilocity has raised $70 million to date.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on October 15, 2013

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2013

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