The race for smaller and more innovative electronics is on, and Samsung has a stake in the space on multiple levels: as a seller of consumer electronics products itself, and as a component supplier for the products of other companies. To that end, today its investment arm, Samsung Venture Investment Corporation, announced it was leading a $20 million investment in Raydiance, a developer of laser precision solutions that are used in the manufacturing of very small, detailed components for medical, automotive and other devices.
Raydiance says the growth round will be used to expand its business into consumer electronics (like phones) as well as build out existing business serving medical and automotive customers. Existing investors Draper Fisher Jurvetson, DFJ-Growth and Greenstreet Partners also participated.
The investment is a strategic one, in that it will give Samsung better access to the technology being developed by the company. “The demand for smaller, smarter devices continues to grow,” said Jay Chong, investment director at Samsung Ventures, in a statement. “Raydiance solutions have the potential to significantly improve existing manufacturing processes and to enable exciting new products. We are investing in Raydiance to ensure that these solutions are available for a variety of high volume manufacturing applications.”
One of the distinctive points of Raydiance is that it uses a “femtosecond laser light source” for precision cutting through any material. Founded by people who come from the defense industry, Raydiance says it is the only company to have created commercial-grade ultrafast laser solutions:
The company’s breakthrough technology brings intelligent control, commercial grade availability and small form factor to ultrafast laser light. Raydiance bundles lasers in ready-to-integrate solutions – validated, factory-proven tools that save valuable time and money.
Raydiance solutions are in production today in the medical, industrial and consumer markets, but the aim is to expand the business also into consumer electronics, which would fit nicely with Samsung’s business in handsets, televisions and other products.