Raza Goes Micro

Investor Atiq Raza created a chip company after all, while Raza Foundries undergoes some changes

April 12, 2004

2 Min Read
Raza Goes Micro

Turns out it was true: Venture capitalist Atiq Raza has founded a chip company, Raza Microelectronics Inc. (RMI).

RMI is a project of Foundries Holdings Inc., the company formerly known as Raza Foundries Inc. (RFI) (see Raza Raises Fast Cash). The creation of Foundries Holdings and RMI apparently happened sometime after March 2003, which is when Atiq Raza told Light Reading that speculation about RMI's existence was "wrong" (see Headcount: Tell It Like It Is and Headcount: Give Me Liberty).

RMI's only overt move came in July when it acquired SandCraft Inc., a microprocessor startup funded by RFI. SandCraft's XL7000 series of chips was already shipping at the time, and RMI is continuing development on the chips, according to its Website.

Sources say RMI also had aspirations on a Gigabit Ethernet switch chip, based on technology from RFI-funded SiSilk Networks, and a Sonet chip. Both have been cancelled, sources say, but Raza denies this in the case of the Sonet chip, saying in an email, "We have not cancelled any Sonet program."

Raza would not comment on the supposed Gigabit Ethernet chip or on the status of SiSilk's technology.

But he notes that RMI's ambitions extend beyond just SandCraft, which "will be a small part of our product portfolio." Details will have to be left to the imagination. "We are not making any public announcements on our company and its products other than the products that are in shipment on our Website," Raza writes.

RMI parent Foundry Holdings has two other "partner companies" listed on its Website. One, named CQOS, claims to enhance "IP service quality through carrier-grade measurement technology." CQOS doesn't appear to have a Website of its own.

The other is Lambda Optical Systems Corp., an RFI-backed optical switch startup formerly known as Firstwave Secure Intelligent Optical Networks Inc. Following a touchy period including some labor complaints from former employees, Firstwave emerged as Lambda Optical, with funding from Sevin Rosen Funds and ComVentures. (See Firstwave's Lost Pay, VCs to Revive Firstwave, and Firstwave Given Second Wind.)

— Craig Matsumoto, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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