Frankel Commercialization Fund Invests in U-M Spin-out – Ambiq Micro

Shannon Beeman
September 1, 2010

The Frankel Commercialization Fund kicked off the school year in a big way – by investing in microprocessor start-up Ambiq Micro.

The Ann Arbor-based company has already received some funding from winning the campus-wide Michigan Business Challenge and DFJ/Cisco’s Global Business Plan Competition. Ambiq makes energy-efficient micro-processors that dramatically extend the battery life of wireless devices and can be utilized in several different applications. These range from smart credit cards to sensors that control temperature to medical devices. The seed investment from the Frankel Fund will be used to help move the technology to market.

Ambiq Micro has many ties to the University. The company is founded by Dennis Sylvester and David Blaauw, professors at the University of Michigan’s College of Engineering, and Scott Hanson, a post-doctoral Fellow at the College of Engineering is currently serving as the company’s CEO. Two MBA students, Phillip O’Neil and David Landman, played critical roles in developing the business plan and assisting with the launch of the company. Ambiq also received significant support from the Zell Lurie Institute, as well as its Michigan Growth Capital Symposium, and the Office of Technology Transfer.

The Frankel Fund currently has five companies in its portfolio and is in the process of recruiting new students to serve as members of the Fund. This fall the Fund will evaluate new investments. Stay tuned for developments.