Motivo Raised $12M for Chip Design with AI

Motivo, a Silicon Valley startup that is building an AI-driven chip design company, has raised $12 million to speed up its product development. The company is focused on developing the best-integrated circuits for high power and low power applications.

The money will be used to hire talent in machine learning, system integration, and software engineering to accelerate the production of chips based on artificial intelligence.

“We’re solving some very fundamental problems with regards to how you do circuit design,” says John Marconi who founded Motivo in 2016. He hopes this new funding round will help them bring more innovation into the semiconductor industry and achieve success similar to that of other semiconductor companies like Nvidia and Qualcomm.

Intel Capital, Storm Ventures, and Seraph Group led a $20 million round for Motivo. The company reports it has now raised more than $30 million in total with its previous seed funding.

Motivo founder Bharath Rangarajan was working at Intel when he saw the need to create new chip designs that can be done quickly without tying up years of work on one design like traditional chips do. Motivo is the first company to use AI for high-volume, low-power designs. Motivo plans on hiring more than a dozen employees in engineering and business development roles with this new funding round.

AI is changing Chip Design

AI is changing the world, and now it’s coming to chip design.

Both chip design and AI are complicated, technical fields of study. It’s hard to imagine that they would ever intersect–until now.

The idea behind the latest breakthrough is simple: A team from MIT has developed a way for chips to “learn” in real-time by applying deep learning algorithms on-chip, rather than off-chip as they currently do.

This is a huge breakthrough with the potential to change chip design as we know it and enable all kinds of new applications, such as autonomously driving cars or analyzing medical data in real-time.

The implications are profound–in some cases, chips might be able to learn from their own mistakes on-chip without human intervention. Whether you’re an engineer or just someone who appreciates the power of AI, this is a development worth paying attention to.

About Motivo

Motivo is using AI to make chips more efficient for high-power applications such as autonomous vehicles, data centers, artificial intelligence software, machine vision systems in factories, or drones.  They also want to make them cheaper and better suited for low-power applications including wearables like smartwatches.

Motivo was founded in 2016 by John Marconi of EDA software company Cadence and has already secured $20 million from investors such as Khosla Ventures (who backed Tesla) with this round bringing the total raised to date to more than $30 million.

The money will be used for hiring talent in machine learning, system integration, and software engineering to accelerate the production of chips based on artificial intelligence.

This investment will help them bring more innovation into the semiconductor industry and achieve success similar to that of other successful semiconductor companies like Nvidia and Qualcomm.

The company is determined to take the complex design process of a chip and give it an upgrade in intelligence. They are not there yet, but they have made progress by working on the product that reviews layouts for chips, RTL code running the electronics behind them, and netlists describing how each piece connects with one another.

Motivo is looking to become the world’s first semiconductor company that uses AI in high-volume, low-power designs. They are focusing on autonomous vehicles and other IoT devices as well as artificial intelligence software–all of which need chips with more processing power and without a lot of excess energy use. ¬†They hope this new round will help them create an ecosystem where artificial intelligence can run on chips to make autonomous driving and other data-heavy decisions possible.

Motivo is the first company of its kind, which means it needs your help–if you’re interested in supporting Motivo’s mission by investing or volunteering please visit their website for more information.

In 2017 Bharath Ramesh, who had been with Cadence since 1996 and was once the CTO of Nvidia, joined Motivo as CEO.

What does this mean for chip design?

This is a huge breakthrough in chip design that could have implications on anything from autonomous driving to data centers or artificial intelligence software–all of which need chips with more processing power and without a lot of excess energy use.

The company is hoping this new round will help them create an ecosystem where artificial intelligence can run on chips and make autonomous driving or other data-heavy decisions possible.