CMOSIS raises $1.52M in second funding round

MAY 20, 2009--The investment is earmarked for the ongoing development of new CMOS image sensor technologies and further business expansion.

MAY 20, 2009--CMOS image sensor provider CMOSIS NV (Antwerp, Belgium; www.cmosis.com) has successfully concluded its second round of financing by raising EUR1.11 million (US$1.52 million) from present shareholders, new personnel, and management. The new investment is earmarked for the ongoing development of new CMOS image sensor technologies and further business expansion. The second round of financing coincides with the appointment of Luc De Mey as CMOSIS CEO and president. Guy Meynants will become vice president, R&D.

"CMOSIS's first 18 months of operation have confirmed to all of us that there are tremendous, still untapped business opportunities for CMOS image sensors, especially in those areas that until recently were considered to be CCD strongholds," De Mey says. "We are convinced that CMOSIS, with its first-class seasoned management team, experienced engineering staff, and exceptionally strong IP portfolio is well positioned to gain a significant share of future industrial and professional CMOS image sensor markets."

De Mey's believes recent progress in CMOS image sensor technology, especially in terms of dark current and noise performance, will cause conventional CCD technology to lose application areas and market share. "CMOSIS's focus will be on machine vision, medical, scientific, and space applications," he says.

Luc De Mey joins CMOSIS as an industry expert and a veteran of the former FillFactory where he served from 1999 until 2004 as CEO and president. After the acquisition of FillFactory by Cypress Semiconductor in August 2004, he stayed in charge of the Mechelen operation until leaving in October 2005. De Mey has an MS in engineering and an MBA from FBS/Northwestern University, Chicago.

CMOSIS received its initial round of financing by its founders and by Capital-E, an early-stage venture fund focused on microelectronics startups in Europe

The CMOSIS technology portfolio is based upon IP related to various advanced aspects of image sensors -- among them high pixel counts at a high fill factor, high-speed functionality, large bit-depth of column ADCs, high dynamic range, TDI (time-delay and integration) implementation in CMOS, very low noise pixel and readout circuits, and novel rad-hard pixel concepts.

In June 2009 CMOSIS will move to an 800-m2 industrial facility in Antwerp, Belgium, where it operates development labs, device qualification, and a 100-m2, Class 100 cleanroom for wafer and device production testing. The enlarged premises are to support the launch of a suite of standard machine-vision CMOS imagers as well as the manufacture of the company's first custom image sensor products. In addition to Andre Alaerts, who was recently appointed director of manufacturing, CMOSIS continues expanding its staff by hiring senior personnel for product qualification and manufacturing as well as quality and customer support operations.

CMOSIS principals, besides Luc De Mey and Andre Alaerts, are Guy Meynants and Lou Hermans -- all former FillFactory founders.

In March of 2009 the Institute for the Promotion of Innovation by Science and Technology in Flanders (IWT) granted to CMOSIS a substantial subsidy supporting its R&D activities that led to the development of the new suite of standard image sensor products.

-- Posted by Vision Systems Design, www.vision-systems.com

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