BMW i Ventures invests in GaN Systems

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By Ted Liu

GaN Systems Inc., a provider of GaN power transistors, has raised undisclosed amount from BMW’s investment arm, BMW i Ventures.

BMW i Ventures joins GaN existing investors BDC Capital, Chrysalix Venture Capital, Cycle Capital Management, RockPort Capital and Tsing Capital.

In May 2105, GaN Systems raised US $20 million in Series C round of financing led by Cycle Capital Management and joined by BDC Capital, Tsing Capital, Chrysalix Venture Capital and RockPort Capital.

Ottawa based GaN Systems manufactures a range of Gallium Nitride high power transistors for consumer, enterprise, industrial, solar/wind/smartgrid, and transportation power conversion applications.

BMW investment will be used to expand global sales and accelerate new product development.

“GaN Systems’ power transistors have created new possibilities for engineers to build the power electronics demanded by today’s systems. Gallium Nitride-based transistors have become, in my opinion, the next big stepping stone in miniaturization. We have seen systems ¼ of the size while providing better efficiency than traditional silicon-based alternatives. With GaN, any system that needs power can become smaller, lighter and more efficient. These capabilities are particularly relevant in the automotive sector,” stated Uwe Higgen, managing director, BMW i Ventures.

“From computer/phone chargers and data center servers to factory motors and electric cars, our customers have validated the GaN value proposition of small, efficient, low-cost power electronics. These benefits are widely recognized by the world’s biggest companies across all industries,” commented GaN Systems’ CEO, Jim Witham.

“There are many examples of how GaN benefits power systems,” continued Higgen. “With autonomous cars, there will be the need to massively scale the data center infrastructure. Data center power consumption is one of the biggest cost drivers, and increasing the efficiency of power conversion will account for billions of dollars in cost savings and enable a more sustainable infrastructure around the globe.”

photo credit: GaN Systems