March 13, 2007 – Blaze DFM, an electrical design for manufacturing (DFM) company, has closed its Series B round of funding for $10 million. Blaze also disclosed the completion of the previously announced merger with Aprio Technologies. The combined company will continue on as Blaze DFM Inc. New to the ranks of Blaze investors are El Dorado Ventures and Mobius Venture Capital, both of whom are previous investors in Aprio and are adding fresh capital to Blaze’s Series B round. Lightspeed Venture Partners, who led Blaze’s Series A funding, also participated in this latest round.
Blaze provides electrical DFM software solutions that maximize parametric yield for sub-100nm chips. Parametric failures — chips that fail to meet timing and power specs — have been described as the most critical yield-limiting factor facing designers today. Maximizing parametric yield has become the top priority at many of the largest chip companies worldwide. For high-volume parts, improvements in parametric yield can measure in the tens of millions of dollars in incremental revenue and reduced cost.
“We strongly believe in the DFM market, and Blaze is the company that is best positioned to lead the way,” comments Tom Peterson, general partner at El Dorado, who will join Blaze’s board of directors. “Aprio’s technology is synergistic with Blaze’s electrical DFM vision and the combination presents a very compelling investment opportunity.”
According to the companies, the combination of Aprio’s litho simulation and analysis engines together with Blaze’s electrical analysis and optimization technology will result in the most comprehensive electrical DFM offering available from any commercial vendor.
“The magnitude of this round of funding is a testament to Blaze’s strategic vision and ability to execute,” says Jacob Jacobsson, president and CEO at Blaze. “We achieved our first customer tapeout just a little over a year after the company was founded. Our first production customer followed just a few months later. In only our second full year of operation, we booked multiple millions of dollars in customer orders from companies such as STMicroelectronics and Qualcomm.”
Blaze was founded in October 2004. First customer tapeout was achieved in December 2005. Blaze was reportedly the first DFM startup to successfully deliver customer silicon in March 2006.