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Posted: January 14, 2010

Presto Engineering Funding Brings Labless Services to Europe

(Nanowerk News) Presto Engineering Inc., the pioneer of the labless business model for semiconductor companies, announced today that it has received $2 million in funding to support its expansion and future growth in Europe.
The investment from Masseran Gestion, a French equity investor in technology companies and innovative startups, will support Presto’s expansion in Europe and its ongoing investment in new RF and 3D-integration technologies. These actions will enable the company to further strengthen its product engineering services to the semiconductor industry, as it provides an alternative to companies’ internal analysis labs.
Like the fabless business model that has changed the nature of chipmaking, Presto’s labless model enables chip companies to outsource critical functions that require high rates of capital investment, substantial facility space and specialized personnel. This reduces costs and frees up corporate resources for their core business of designing advanced devices and bringing them to market. Presto maintains hubs with state-of-the-art lab capabilities and cadres of experienced engineers and scientists; their work on a wide range of leading-edge chip projects enables Presto to offer both world-class measurement capabilities and insightful advice during the critical late stages of product development, thus accelerating time to market.
In addition to enhanced RF and 3D-integration expertise, Presto provides leading-edge test, reliability, fault-isolation and failure-analysis services. Presto’s first European hub will be in Caen, France, where it will acquire lab infrastructure from NXP Semiconductor.
“Masseran Gestion’s investment validates Presto’s labless business strategy with the financial endorsement of a venture fund,” said Michel Villemain, CEO of Presto. “It also gives our company the means to expand our strategy and services to Europe, establish economies of scale in our hubs and accelerate our growth in a vital semiconductor market.”
“This is a logical, strategic move by Presto for many reasons, including the strong lab culture in Europe, where semiconductor companies are accustomed to partnering with labs,” said David Manjarres, deputy general manager of Masseran Gestion and a new member of Presto’s board of directors. “Moreover, by working with multiple customers on a variety of challenges and situations, Presto’s team will build a knowledge base that is virtually unmatched in the semiconductor industry.”
Through its French-based subsidiary, Presto Engineering EUROPE, the company will aggressively pursue commercialization opportunities on the Continent and build a corporate infrastructure that will make it the ideal externalization partner for Europe’s semiconductor companies.
About Masseran Gestion
Masseran Gestion, subsidiary of GCE Capital (Groupe Caisse d’Epargne), manages venture capital funds dedicated to technology companies, from start-ups to mature, innovative SMEs or industrial spin-offs. Additional information is available on the company’s website at www.masseran.com.
About Presto Engineering
Presto Engineering introduced the labless business model to the semiconductor industry in 2007 when it acquired Cypress Semiconductor’s product-engineering lab and created a hub of analytical capabilities in Silicon Valley. The company helps IDMs and fabless customers improve new device predictability and time to market by complementing their internal resources with comprehensive chip testing and analysis services. Supported by unique technical experience and extensive industry exposure, Presto’s product-engineering services include RF and 3D integration and state-of-the-art ATE, reliability testing, failure analysis and fault-isolation. The company recently expanded into Europe by acquiring lab infrastructure of NXP Semiconductor in Caen, France, and establishing a European subsidiary. Presto Engineering, an ISO 9001 company, is based in San Jose, Calif.
Source: Presto Engineering (press release)
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