Sonics to Launch Aggressive Marketing and Sales Programs for its Smart SOC Interconnect IP
MOUNTAIN VIEW, CALIFORNIA - April 15, 2002 - Semiconductor intellectual property (IP) provider Sonics, Inc. today announced the appointment of four new members to its board of directors as a result of its recent Series C round of financing. Sonics also announced the final close of this private equity round with an oversubscribed total of $25.5 million including an additional $5.0 million investment from TL Ventures.
The new members of the Sonics board of directors are: Dr. Joel Balbien, managing member at Smart Technology Ventures-the lead investor in this round, Mr. Mark Chen, Managing Director at Easton Hunt Capital Partners, Mr. Robert Verratti, Managing Director at TL Ventures, and Mr. Fred Wong, Managing Partner at InveStar Capital.
"We achieved three of our key corporate objectives with this latest round of funding," said Grant Pierce, president, CEO and chairman of the board of Sonics. "We now have the funds to support an aggressive marketing campaign for our MicroNetwork smart interconnect IP products and for the expansion of our customer base within the net-edge and digital multi-media markets. We have a well-balanced group of investors representing the U.S. and Far East. Finally, we've created a world-class board of directors with diverse backgrounds and experiences to guide us as our business continues to rapidly grow."
"Sonics has many positive factors going for it that make it a compelling company in which to invest," said Robert Verratti, managing director at TL Ventures. "SOC is a growing segment of the semiconductor market and Sonics' technology provides a cost-effective solution that actually reduces the expense and time required to do complex SOC designs. Sonics' products are already proven and its customers are currently shipping production silicon that incorporates its smart interconnect IP. The company also possesses a very competent management team both at the technology and operations levels. We are pleased to join an excellent group of fellow investors to assist Sonics as it becomes one of industry's 'star' IP suppliers."
About Sonics' World-Class Board of Directors
Joel Balbien, managing member, Smart Technology Ventures
Dr. Joel Balbien Ph.D., CFA, has worked with STV's founder, Mr. David Nazarian, for three years building Smart Technology Ventures' portfolio of over forty companies. Dr. Balbien has been a frequent speaker within the venture capital community including presentations at LARTA conferences and the MIT/Caltech Forum. He has also served as a mentor for the Southern California Venture Capital Forum. Prior to joining Smart Technology Ventures, Dr. Balbien was vice president of business development for a private aerospace holding company and an assistant treasurer at Sempra Energy (formerly Pacific Enterprises). He also worked as an operations research analyst for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Dr. Balbien received his MS and Ph.D. from CalTech.
Mark Chen, Managing Director, Easton Hunt Capital Partners
Mr. Mark Chen is responsible for Easton Hunt's investments in technology, with focuses in semiconductors, telecommunications equipment and sub-systems, and enterprise software. He has over 13 years experience in venture capital, operations, and R&D. Prior to joining Easton, Chen was co-founder of an electronic components and networking products distribution company. Previously, he was a manager in charge of the R&D at a division of the Cincinnati Milacron Company. He started his career as a development engineer and a research scientist. Chen holds an MBA with distinction from Columbia Business School, an MS in Materials Science & Engineering from Penn State University, and a BS in Engineering from Shanghai Jiao Tong University.
Robert Verratti, managing director, TL Ventures
Mr. Robert Verratti has extensive experience supporting TL Venture's portfolio companies with strategic counsel. Prior to joining TL Ventures, Verratti was chief executive officer of e4L, Inc., the world's largest infomercial company. He built a strong operations background based on his experience as president and CEO of Total Care Systems, a group care living facilities provider. Verratti also served as CEO of Great Western Cities, a land development subsidiary of Hunt International Resources, and Globe Ticket, a specialty printing company. During his career, he has also worked in various H. Ross Perot enterprises, including EDS. Verratti is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and served for five years as a commissioned officer in the nuclear submarine service.
Fred Wong, Managing Partner, InveStar Capital
Mr. Fred Wong is responsible for running InveStar's Silicon Valley office. Prior to joining InveStar, Wong founded Wong & Associates Consulting Co., which provided consultation to the hi-tech industry, including management skills, strategic planning, market research and analysis, and industry analysis for start-up and turn-around companies. From 1992 to 1996, Wong was responsible for the semiconductor equipment business of Varian Associates. While managing a staff of over 60 personnel, his responsibilities included new product development as well as sales, marketing and production technology of new product lines, achieving annual sales surpassing $200 million and sales growth of 50 percent for each of the three years. Wong received his Doctorate, Master and Bachelor degrees in Physics from Southern Methodist University and in 1978 received his Master of Business Administration from the University of Dallas.
About Sonics, Inc.
Sonics, Inc., the premier developer of MicroNetworks for "plug and play" integration of semiconductor intellectual property (IP) cores into system-on-chip (SOC) designs, is a privately held company in Mountain View, California. A Sonics MicroNetwork manages all communications between SOC subsystems, guarantees end-to-end performance, and ensures real-time quality of service. MicroNetwork technology enables flexible, platform-based SOC design through a robust development environment that uses an open standard core interface, the Open Core Protocol (OCP). Major semiconductor and systems companies have adopted Sonics' technology for SOC applications in the communications, networking and multimedia markets. For more information, see http://www.sonicsinc.com.
Sonics, Inc., Mountain View
Ed Smith, 650/938-2500 ext. 126
Scott Seiden, 650/637-8212 ext. 208