Comcast Leads $17M Funding in BroadLogic

Chip startup BroadLogic Network Technologies raised $17 million in third-round funding led by Comcast Interactive Capital, with Advance/Newhouse Communications also joining as a new investor.

BroadLogic developed a chip set, called TeraPix, which converts digital-video signals to analog at the edge of a coaxial-cable network -- including at a subscriber’s home -- to conserve bandwidth.

The funding brings the San Jose, Calif.-based company to a total of $49 million raised. Previous investors in the company also joined in the financing round: Time Warner, Cisco Systems, Intel, Rho Ventures, Levensohn Venture Partners, Walden International and Presidio Venture Partners.

“No. 1, we think this technology is terrific technology for effectively increasing the bandwidth that cable plant will have,” CIC managing director Louis Toth said.

Comcast also invested in the startup “to generate more momentum around BroadLogic and BroadLogic’s technology so more equipment makers will get interested in this and pave the way for the next generation of products,” he said, adding that the startup had “great partners around the table,” like Cisco, Intel and Time Warner.

“Getting funded from CIC as a lead investor is a really important step for BroadLogic,” CEO Danial Faizullabhoy said. “There’s recognition in the industry that there needs to be multiple ways to increase bandwidth across the network.”

BroadLogic has about 30 employees. “You have to control burn until revenue comes in,” Faizullabhoy added.

The TeraPix will begin shipping in small quantities this year for small prototype runs. “We are working with several customers who are laying out designs, doing boards, writing firmware to launch their products into the market,” Faizullabhoy said, declining to name equipment vendors BroadLogic is working with.

BroadLogic is targeting four different market segments for the TeraPix chip: in the headend, in the network infrastructure (e.g., nodes), in multidwelling units and at residences. Faizullabhoy said the startup has at least one customer in each segment. “Upstream of the TeraPix, you recover a lot of the bandwidth,” he added.

But what would be the advantage of deploying digital-to-analog equipment in a headend? According to Faizullabhoy, the space and power requirements required for a TeraPix-based video-processing system would be far less than existing gear -- as much as one-ninth the size.