Intel Capital leads Sand 9 funding round, joins Board

June 19, 2012 – BUSINESS WIRE — Timing device maker Sand 9 Inc. raised $23 million in its Series C financing round, led by Intel Capital and with significant participation from Vulcan Capital.

Sand 9 will use the Series C capital to “migrate from research and development toward shipping product into the market,” said Vince Graziani, CEO, Sand 9, who plans to commercialize the first Sand 9 product, ramp volume production, and rapidly expand the company’s product portfolio.

Intel Capital and Vulcan Capital join existing investors Commonwealth Capital Ventures, Flybridge Capital Partners, General Catalyst Partners, Khosla Ventures and CSR.

In November 2011, Sand 9 held an equity funding round, aiming for $6 million. Earlier that year, the company bolstered its Board with Skyworks EVP Greg Waters to plan for commercial launch.

Sand 9’s timing devices for wired and wireless applications use micro electro mechanical system (MEMS) technology to ensure synchronicity and stable operation in complex electronic devices. Sand 9’s MEMS timing device platform reportedly achieves stringent phase noise and short-term stability requirements. The spurious-free resonator design can enhance network efficiency due to reduced packet loss. The components offer high immunity to noise and shock and withstand high lead-free reflow temperatures. They challenge the conventional temperature compensated crystal oscillators (TCXO) for applications from smartphones and tablets to industrial test and measurement systems and communications infrastructure equipment.

Semico Research recently reported the MEMS oscillator market at <1% of the total timing market of $6.3 billion. Sand 9’s “drop-in replacement and technical benefits over established silicon quartz crystal timing devices,” will capture market share from the legacy quartz components,” said Tony Massimini, chief of technology, Semico Research.  

Intel Capital noted the limitations of quartz timing products in adding Sand 9 to its portfolio, said David Flanagan, managing director, Intel Capital, who added that Sand 9 MEMS components could make mobile devices easier to design and manufacture, as well as improving the end-product’s performance. As part of the funding, Intel Capital appointed Dr. Siva Sivaram, an industry veteran with significant semiconductor process and operational experience as well as founder and CEO of Twin Creeks Technologies, Inc., to join the Sand 9 Board of Directors.

Intel Capital, Intel’s global investment and M&A organization, makes equity investments in innovative technology start-ups and companies worldwide. For more information on Intel Capital, visit www.intelcapital.com.

Sand 9 offers a precision MEMS technology platform that enhances quality and performance, simplifies system design, and promotes space and power savings in integrated electronic systems. For more information on Sand 9, visit www.sand9.com.

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