JPMorgan Sees Green in Fabless

Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Greenfield Networks, a fabless semiconductor and merchant silicon provider for communications system builders, has raised $21.5 million in a Series C round led by JPMorgan Partners.

The round also included previous investors Sequoia Capital, Global Catalyst Partners and Walden International.

Greenfield, founded by a group of engineers formerly from Cisco Systems, has raised $46 million to date, including $13 million last year at a post-money valuation of $33 million, according to Thomson Venture Economics (publisher of PE Week).

Similar to other companies that JPMorgan invests in, Greenfield maintain its headquarters in the United States, uses foundry services in Taiwan that are near its OEM and ODM customers, and has software design and product support teams in India.

Chris Albinson, a managing director of JPMorgan in San Francisco, says that he was interested in the company because it is developing semiconductor products in an area of higher level functionality that is now just being employed in the $14 billion dollar annual market for Ethernet switches. Greenfield is working in the 1 gigabit to 10 gigabit-per-second Ethernet space for existing equipment manufacturers, such as Cisco, Force 10 and Hewlett-Packard.

Greenfield will use the capital for expansion plans. The company expects to reach profitability next year.