Provigent Eyes BWA Vendors

Chipset startup Provigent Inc. has finally emerged from a lengthy period of stealth mode to start hawking its wares in the booming broadband wireless access market, but it has no plans to jump the WiMax bandwagon.

Founded in August 2000, the Silicon Valley-based company has used its latest $8 million VC funding announcement to declare itself officially open to industry eyes (see Provigent Scores $8M). To date the startup has secured a total investment of $19 million.

Provigent's single-chip silicon product – dubbed "PVG-310" [ed. note: you can get ointment for that these days] – is targeting broadband wireless system vendors, with a particular focus on cellular backhaul infrastructure.

According to CEO Dan Charash, Provigent's competition looks set to be "the hundreds of homegrown solutions that each of the system vendors typically develops in-house."

Charash claims the company is "bringing economies of scale and expertise into this very fragmented industry. We are replicating the transition from homegrown solutions in the same way Broadcom and Atheros did with wireless LAN."

Just don't expect to see Provigent competing against the likes of Fujitsu Ltd. (OTC: FJTSY; Tokyo: 6702) and Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) in the WiMax silicon market (see Fujitsu Readies WiMax Chip and Intel's WiMax Drive). "We are not targeting the WiMax market at all. We are very comfortable in more mature and proven markets. WiMax is an exciting market, but we are not going with the herd."

In typical startup fashion, Charash says the company has already struck a number of unannounced customer wins. A headcount of 40 is expected "by the end of the year."

— Justin Springham, Senior Editor, Europe, Unstrung

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