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13 January, 2006 - 13:28 By Staff Reporter

Computer lab spin-out raises £5.1m

A spin-out from the University of Cambridge’s computer laboratory has raised £5.1m in second round funding to expand its workforce and the capabilities of its flagship product.Azuro, originally called Paradigm, was founded by post-doctoral researchers Paul Cunningham – now CEO – and Steve Wilcox, chief architect, in March 2002.

Azuro has developed electronic design automation (EDA) software that drastically reduces the power consumption of digital chips.

Power has become increasingly important to electronics companies as consumers demand ever more talk time, play time, and functionality in their next-generation mobile phones and wireless devices.

The latest investment was led by Miramar Venture Partners, with existing investors Benchmark Capital and TTP Ventures also participating in the round.

Azuro has now raised a total of £7.6m.

Business Weekly was the first newspaper to feature the company, covering it in February 2002, before it had even closed its seed funding round. Among the seed investors in the company were Robert Sansom and Stan Boland.

The company is currently building out its management team and hiring engineers and sales people as it ramps up the commercialisation of its flagship product, PowerCentric.

Azuro is now headquartered in Silicon Valley, in Mountain View, California and maintains a development office at St John’s Innovation Centre.

Heiner Sussner, managing partner at Miramar said: “Power has become a critical issue for digital chip design teams, and we see a compelling need for advanced EDA tools that enable these teams to build lower power chips.

“Azuro’s product is architected from the ground up to tackle the complex power saving strategies necessary for next generation chip design, and the demand for their solution is impressive.”

The technology can yield up to 20 per cent power savings, according to the company. Among its customers are Broadcom.

“Azuro has undertaken the development of an ambitious technology and proven that they can deliver a significant power saving advantage to their customers,” said Mark Evans, general partner at Benchmark Capital.

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