Startup gains funds for LED lighting IC

September 12, 2011 // By Nicolas Mokhoff
Ikon Semiconductor Ltd., a Dublin-based fabless semiconductor company chasing LED lighting opportunities, has received an overall investment of 800,000 euros (about $1.1 million) from the Bank of Ireland Seed and Early Stage Equity Fund.

The syndicated investment includes 400,000 euros (more than half million dollars) by the Bank of Ireland Seed Fund with the remainder of the funds provided by Green BES Fund, Enterprise Ireland and private investors.

Startup Ikon is addressing the LED lighting industry. The company is focused on the residential and commercial LED bulb replacement market which industry watchers expect to grow exponentially from 80 million units in 2011 to 430 million units by 2013. Ikon will use the funds to support the development of its single-chip power converter, which resides within the bulb and powers the light-emitting diode light.

“Ikon Semiconductor Limited is a true example of how an investment of this type can support a home-grown Irish company to strategically grow in the LED lighting market, which is critical for the company and also as part of Ireland's economic recovery,” Donal Duffy, Head of Enterprise Ireland Relations, Bank of Ireland, in a statement.

“The LED lighting market is a high growth area and this funding will allow us to make significant progress over the coming 12 months and capitalize on this market potential,” said Conor McAuliffe, CEO of Ikon Semiconductor.

The company was founded by semiconductor industry veterans who are applying proprietary digital control techniques to replace traditional analog control methods. Ikon's first product, which will be available in early 2012, will target the residential and commercial bulb replacement market.

Over 12 billion incandescent light bulbs are sold annually, lighting accounts for almost 19 percent of global energy consumption which equates to the output of approximately 1000 large electric power plants, according to International Energy Agency (IEA) .