Xconomy, PR Newswire: SiOnyx is announcing a completion of $12.5M Series B financing round that includes new investors Crosslink Capital in San Francisco and Seattle-based Vulcan Capital, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen’s venture firm. Strategic partner Coherent, a laser company in Santa Clara, CA, also has signed on as a new investor in SiOnyx, and existing investors Polaris Venture Partners and Harris & Harris also participated in the round. The $12.5M represents the completion (and sum total) of the financing round that Xconomy first wrote about in June.
In 2007, the startup raised $11M in venture capital from Harris & Harris, Polaris, and RedShift Ventures. It also has raised an undisclosed amount of non-dilutive financing from government sources and partners, the company CEO Stephen Saylor says, which brings the company’s total funding to more than $35M.
Saylor explains that black silicon gives you performance in the dark comparable to what a conventional image sensor can do in daylight. That’s partly because the material is much better at absorbing photons in the near-infrared part of the spectrum than conventional silicon detectors.
“We’re going where [others] are blind, and we enable you to see,” Saylor says. “There is no other way to deliver this kind of performance. We can get there quickly. We’re in foundries, standing on the shoulders of the cellphone industry.”
Saylor plans to use the new money to build out his “execution team” and take care of the company’s early customers. He says SiOnyx will be hiring around the world—including in Asia and the company’s satellite office in Beaverton, OR—in areas including engineering, marketing, finance, and business development. The company has more than 20 employees now and expects to double in size within 18 months, Saylor says.
“There’s a lot of semiconductor history that says it requires a ton of capital. What makes us unique is we don’t have a massive device design team. We’re not doing an incredibly complex [video] codec [chip] or next-generation processor. We’re using existing technology and enhancing it with our process,” Saylor says.