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picoChip scores $27m

UK chip shop picoChip said Friday that it has secured $27m in new investment in fourth round funding.

Highland Capital Partners led the round together with a number of undisclosed strategic investors. Existing investors include Atlas Venture, Pond Venture Partners, Scottish Equity Partners, Rothschild, Intel and AT&T.

picoChip claims to be the only semiconductor company totally focused on wireless infrastructure – building WiMAX, HSPA and femtocell products.

Guillaume d’Eyssautier, president and CEO of picoChip, said: “Over the next year picoChip will continue to grow as the company expands its product portfolio to new wireless technologies including LTE, TD-SCDMA and 4G.”

Chip manufacturers like PicoChip have developed inexpensive baseband processors for very low cost femtocell base stations that can be installed in the home or office. Analyst Strategy Analytics believes that these femtocells have the potential to reduce the demand for cellphones that include wifi capabilities, which many industry watchers expect to emerge in high volumes over the next several years to support the convergence of fixed and mobile communications.

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