ChipFlow Raises £1.2M in Pre-Seed Funding

Written by Alex Bredeen

ChipFlow Raises £1.2M in Pre-Seed Funding

ChipFlow Raises £1.2M in Pre-Seed Funding to Democratise Semiconductor Design Through Open-Source Software Tools The oversubscribed financing round, which was led by Fontinalis Partners, includes participation from Fuel Ventures, InMotion Ventures, the investment arm of JLR, APX, and others.

ChipFlow, a UK startup building an open source semiconductor chip design platform (PaaS), today announces the completion of a £1.2M pre-seed round of financing. The round was led by Fontinalis Partners and included investments from Fuel Ventures, InMotion Ventures, APX, and others. The new funding will be instrumental in expanding ChipFlow's team, enabling the company to attract top-tier engineering talent to further enhance its open-source software tools and accelerate product development efforts, while supporting the progression of ChipFlow's early commercial engagements.

What is ChipFlow

ChipFlow’s market disrupting Platform as a Service offering will provide a new, significantly more affordable way for OEMs to design and order integrated circuits. The company was founded in 2021 by a co-Founder team of 10 and is currently building its MVP platform offering together with lead customers across a number of sectors, including automotive. Please visit for more information. “We believe that open-source silicon design represents a transformational shift that is occurring, and we founded ChipFlow to be at the forefront of that movement,” commented Rob Taylor, CEO and co-founder at ChipFlow.

“This round of capital, and importantly the investors behind it, serves both as early validation to the global scale of our vision and provides the firepower to execute upon our ambitions.” “Open source maturation has changed business models and vastly increased overall market opportunity in every industry where it has occurred,” commented Tomi Rantakari, CCO. ‘’Even today, existing Open Source hardware coupled with our core platform enables us to build custom ICs for Electronic Manufacturers at a greatly reduced cost.

This funding, along with funding from the British Government - Innovate UK, enables us to bring this capability directly to the whole embedded electronics market, enabling companies to directly drive their own innovation and supply chain resilience.”

Founded in 2021 by a group of experienced open-source software and semiconductor executives including Rob Taylor (CEO), Tom Rantakari (CCO), and Staf Verhaegen (CTO), ChipFlow has also collaborated closely with several leaders across the broader open-source software, hardware, and chip design industries, having received significant early contributions from Ian Page, Matt Venn, Michel Laudes, Catherine Zotova and Myrtle Shah. To date, ChipFlow is building upon Amaranth, a novel, Python-based hardware description language that transforms productivity for designing digital ICs. The ChipFlow platform provides cloud-scalable debug, test, simulation, and formal verification frameworks out of the box, connecting this with both industry standard semiconductor foundries and novel IC manufacturing processes, like plastic chips, GaN and SiGe.

For the first time, many of ChipFlow’s prospective customers are able to bring silicon design in-house: lowering costs, simplifying design complexities, and shortening feedback loops from design to verification.

Rob remarks, “Our team has worked with hundreds of electronic product companies over our careers, and the capability and availability of ICs have been at the heart of many issues in getting products to market. Our platform replaces the time-consuming process of component selection and removes complexities surrounding hardware and software interaction, accelerating innovation whilst reducing time-to-market.”

“We admire the impressive work that Rob and his team have been able to achieve in building the foundation for ChipFlow on a bootstrapped budget, and we are thrilled to support the company alongside a great group of investors that have joined Fontinalis Partners in backing the company,” commented Dan Ratliff, Principal at Fontinalis Partners. “We’re still in the early innings for open-source silicon design, but we recognize several supportive tailwinds that align well with ChipFlow’s thoughtful approach to scaling its team and technology in close collaboration with industry players and this open-source movement.” To date, the open-source movement has significantly lagged for hardware development, particularly for products that require custom silicon chip design and fabrication where the costs, partnerships, tools, and expertise required create significant barriers. ChipFlow aims to accelerate a budding transformation that’s occurring in open-source silicon design by integrating and building upon a set of novel tools and datasets being developed in real time.

“The recent semiconductor shortages highlighted fundamental issues within value chains across multiple industries. Novel platforms like ChipFlow are critical in enabling manufacturers to innovate faster and better by reducing development cycles, increasing supply chain control and business resilience,” commented Sam Nasrolahi, Principal at InMotion Ventures. ‘’It’s exciting to see a UK startup pioneering a semiconductor design approach with the potential to enhance JLR's next generation vehicles and services."

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