As I sift through mounds of semiconductor press releases trying to figure out the relevance (with mixed results) I consider it a learning experience even when they don’t really tell me anything. This one however tells me two very important things:
1) Arm is a much more competitive company with the new leadership. I saw a noticeable press release change when Softbank bought Arm back in 2016 and it is great to see them back in the game. We can expect more of this, maybe even at a higher level, once the Arm IPO goes through this year which I am highly anticipating.
2) Silicon Catalyst continues to be a positive disruptive influence in the semiconductor industry, even more so than I imagined when I first spoke to the founders back in 2015. I have been involved with dozens of start-up companies during my 40 year semiconductor career and know first hand of their importance. Anything to help the start-up ecosystem is greatly appreciated, but let me tell you, Silicon Catalyst has by far exceeded even my extremely high expectations, absolutely.
We first reported the Silicon Catalyst Arm partnership in 2020 which was the first of many Silicon Catalyst announcements and events we have covered. For Arm to choose Silicon Catalyst for this event is very high praise indeed. Rather than summarize this historical event here is today’s press release in its entirety:
Silicon Catalyst announces “Silicon Startups Contest” in partnership with Arm
Worldwide call for applicants to qualify and win significant commercial and technical support from Arm
Silicon Valley, California and Cambridge, UK – May 10, 2023 – Silicon Catalyst, the world’s only incubator focused exclusively on accelerating semiconductor solutions, is pleased to announce a “Silicon Startups Contest” in partnership with Arm. The contest, launching today, is organized and administered by Silicon Catalyst and is directed towards early-stage entrepreneurial teams developing a system-on-chip (SoC) design using Arm® processor IP (intellectual property), proven in more than 250 billion chips shipped worldwide.
The contest offers an opportunity for silicon startups to win valuable commercial, technical and marketing support from Arm and Silicon Catalyst. The winner will receive Arm credit worth $150,000, which could cover IP fees for a complete embedded system, or significantly contribute to the cost of a higher performance application. In addition, both the winner and two runners-up will receive:
- Access to the full Arm Flexible Access for Startups program, which includes:
- No cost, easy access to an extensive SoC design portfolio including a wide range of Cortex processors, Mali graphics, Corstone reference systems, CoreLink and CoreSight system IP.
- Free tools, training, and support to enhance your team
- $0 license fee to produce prototypes
- Cost-free Arm Design Check-in Review with Arm’s experienced support team
- Entry to an invitation-only Arm ecosystem event with a chance to be featured and connect with Arm’s broad portfolio of silicon, OEM and software partners
- Investor pitch review and preparation support by Silicon Catalyst, with an opportunity to present to the Silicon Catalyst Angels group and their investment syndication network.
“We believe that Arm technology is for everyone, and early-stage silicon startups trust Arm to deliver proven, validated computing platforms that enable them to innovate with freedom and confidence,” said Paul Williamson, senior vice president and general manager, IoT Line of Business at Arm. “Since its launch, Arm Flexible Access for Startups has enabled around 100 startups with access to our wide portfolio of IP, extensive ecosystem and broad developer base, and we look forward to seeing what creativity this prize inspires in the exciting new startups that enter this contest.”
The contest is open to startup companies in pre-seed, seed and Series A funding, that have raised a maximum of $20M in funding and all contest applicant organizations will be considered for acceptance to the Silicon Catalyst Incubator/Accelerator. Judges include senior executives from both Arm and Silicon Catalyst.
“Arm was the first member of our ecosystem to join as both a Strategic Partner and an In-Kind Partner. Their Flexible Access program is a game-changer for startups. Through this program, silicon startups can move fast, experiment with ease, and design with confidence – so it’s a highly valuable part of the contest prize,” stated Pete Rodriguez, Silicon Catalyst CEO. “Entrepreneurial teams entering the contest will also automatically be applying to our Incubator, with the winning company receiving credit with Arm that could give them a significant head start in the commercialization of their product, as well as the opportunity to present to the Silicon Catalyst Angel investment group and their syndication network of investment partners.”
The contest will run from May 10, 2023 through to June 23, 2023. The contest winner and two runner-up companies will be announced in early July 2023. Contest rules and application details can be found at https://siliconcatalyst.com/arm-sic-contest-2023
About Silicon Catalyst “It’s about what’s next”
Silicon Catalyst is the world’s only incubator focused exclusively on accelerating semiconductor solutions, built on a comprehensive coalition of in-kind and strategic partners to dramatically reduce the cost and complexity of development. More than 900 startup companies worldwide have engaged with Silicon Catalyst and the company has admitted 97 exciting companies. With a world-class network of mentors to advise startups, Silicon Catalyst is helping new semiconductor companies address the challenges in moving from idea to realization. The incubator/accelerator supplies startups with access to design tools, silicon devices, networking, and a path to funding, banking and marketing acumen to successfully launch and grow their companies’ novel technology solutions. Over the past seven plus years, the Silicon Catalyst model has proven to dramatically accelerate a startup’s trajectory while at the same time de-risking the equation for investors. Silicon Catalyst has been named the Semiconductor Review’s 2021 Top-10 Solutions Company award winner. More information is available at www.siliconcatalyst.com
About Silicon Catalyst Angels
The Silicon Catalyst Angels was established in July 2019 as a separate organization to provide access to seed and Series A funding for Silicon Catalyst portfolio companies. What makes Silicon Catalyst Angels unique is not only the investment group’s visibility into a semiconductor-focused deal flow pipeline, but our membership is comprised of seasoned semiconductor veterans who bring with them a wealth of knowledge along with their ability to invest. Driven by passion and a desire to ‘give back’, our members understand the semiconductor market thanks to a lifetime of engagement in the industry. When you couple our members enthusiasm, knowledge, and broad network of connections with companies that have been vetted and admitted to Silicon Catalyst, you have a formula that is to date, nonexistent within the investment community. More information about membership can be found at www.siliconcatalystangels.com
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