Business Times

e-Sri Lankans assist in building a unique global chip

In the Integrated Circuits (IC) industry, USA's Silicon Valley and a Colombo-based start up company Tier Logic Inc. have introduced a novel 3-dimensional IC which is used in the automotive, communications and IT, consumer, data processing and industrial market segements.

This is the first monolithic semiconductor IC in the world to use thin-film transistors. In a statement to the Business Times from the US, founder of Tier Logic Raminda Madurawe said the company designs hardware, software and intellectual property (IP) to market and sell programmable and customizable IC products world wide.

Tier Logic was founded in 2003 by Mr. Madurawe and Peter Suaris, veterans of Altera Corp. and Mentor Graphics Corp., respectively. Mr. Madurawe said Tier Logic holds over 50 issued US patents granted to him, having invented the 3D field programmable gate array (FPGA) concept. The company received seed funding in 2005 and venture capital from Matrix Partners and Walden International in 2007.

"The innovations of Tier Logic significantly enhance the value of programmable IC's as we now provide programmable production solutions," Mr. Madurawa said. "With 3D, we improve cost, power, performance, security and all of the drawbacks associated with traditional prototyping FGPA's without losing programmability."

Tier Logic is headquartered in Santa Clara, California but about half of its employees are in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Mr. Madurawe is a student of Ananda College while Mr. Suaris is a student of Royal College. The Colombo branch, Tier Logic (Pvt) Ltd., started operating as a Board of Investment (BOI) company in January 2008 and conducts research and development work in chip design, test development, board design, tools software design and intellectual property development.. Thirty-year semiconductor veteran Doug Laird, who founded Transmeta Corp. and recently served as CEO of C-switch, is the CEO of Tier Logic.

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