RUSNANO Portfolio Company Opens the First Russian Design Center for Wi-Fi Chips

12 / 11 / 2012

Quantenna Communications, Inc., a U.S. developer of next generation, high-performance Wi-Fi and RUSNANO, a 10-billion high-technology investment fund, announced the opening of a design center in St. Petersburg, Russia. It is the first time when Russian engineers will be working on the full development cyclefrom algorithm and architecture development to industrial implementation.

The design center will contribute in the development of the next generation Wi-Fi chipsets, including chipsets for both the 802.11n and 802.11ac standard, where high throughput (up to 600 Mbit/s and 1.7 Gbit/s respectively) is combined with high reliability.  Leaders in wireless carriers and equipment around the world are using Quantenna’s industry leading 802.11n chipsets that are capable of simultaneous transmission of four spatial beams HD video streaming in home across Wi-Fi devices.

For the next generation development, Quantenna raised $79 million led by RUSNANO and Sequoia Capital with participation from other funds such as DAG Ventures, Sigma Partners, Southern Cross Venture Partners, and Venrock Associates. RUSNANO will invest up to $40 million in the project.

Quantenna’s design center in St. Petersburg in contrast with design centers of other global hi-tech companies in Russia will be involved in the development of core technology, i.e., the fundamental technology of the next generation Wi-Fi chipsets.

“We will cooperate in development of cutting-edge technology,” said Georgy Kolpachev, managing director of RUSNANO, “The agreement with Quantenna will help to unleash the potential of the Russian engineering and research discipline. Russian engineers will be fully involved in the development of world-class wireless equipment.”

Dr. Nikolay Mikhaylov will be the General Director of the design center in St. Petersburg. Prior to joining Quantenna, he led Russian design center of MStar Semiconductor, where he and his team developed MStar’s widely deployed  GPS/GLONASS chipset.  Dr. Mikhaylov’s experience in building a development team and integrating it in international projects will be strong asset to the Quantenna-RUSNANO joint project. The center will employ up to 100 Russian software and hardware engineers, as well as algorithm developers and architects over the 3 years.  The team will be fully set up by mid-2013.

“Participation in the development of architecture and design of next generation Wi-Fi chipsets lays the foundation for future wireless technologies,” said Dr. Mikhaylov. “Russia is traditionally strong in engineering projects where research plays a significant role. By joining efforts of Russian experts with the experience of Quantenna’s top-class international engineering team, Quantenna Russia center  will enable the establishment of a new engineering discipline in Russia.”