According to foreign media reports, three apple semiconductor executives who used to be in charge of iPhone chips have set up a start-up company to design processors for data centers, with the intention of catching up with the current industry leaders Intel and AMD.
Nuvia was founded by Gerard Williams III, Manu Gulati and John Bruno in early 2019 and is developing a processor code named Phoenix. The company said Friday it had raised $53 million from Dell and a number of Silicon Valley companies. It is understood that this fund will help the company expand from 60 employees to about 100 employees by the end of this year.
The company’s founders, supporters and plans have never been reported before.
Williams has been Apple’s chief processor and system on chip architect for more than nine years. He left apple this spring. Gulati worked for apple for eight years, developing mobile systems on chip, while Bruno worked for Apple’s platform architecture group for five years. Before joining nuvia, Gulati and Bruno worked at Google.
At nuvia, the team’s goal is to leverage their experience in designing powerful chips for small battery powered devices such as iPhones and apply them to large, power hungry data center servers. Williams said the founder’s goal is to make a chip that is faster, more energy efficient and safer than existing data center processors.
“We hope to be able to bring all these aspects into this new market over time and make real use of them in this market, because it is a mature area of continuous innovation and development,” Williams said in an interview
Chip vendors such as Qualcomm, Mercure and ampere computing, a start-up founded by Intel’s former president, are trying to compete with Intel and AMD in the server market by using chip technology previously used by mobile devices.
But Patrick Moorhead, an analyst at Moor Insights & strategies, says that based on the track record of nuvia’s founding team, the company can be described as a strong new entrant. He said the team has brought “unprecedented” performance improvements to every new generation of apple chips.
“I’ve been in the semiconductor industry for 30 years. There has never been anything certain, but I know that the most successful chip companies have rock star architects and developers, “Moorhead said.
Nuvia’s investors include Dell’s venture capital division. Dell is one of Intel’s biggest customers. Scott darling, President of the venture capital group, himself was a senior employee of apple and Intel. He said he could not say now whether Dell would use nuvia chips.
“The silicon industry is moving forward,” he said. “You have to have a world-class team to do something that can subvert the industry. Even if competitors respond, it will still prevail. At nuvia, we think we found such a team. “
Editor in charge: PJ