Econostrum | Economic News in the Mediterranean

The specialist in reprogrammable semiconductors Menta obtains €7.5 million from the EIB

Written by Eric Apim on Thursday, February 3rd 2022 à 16:30 | Read 513 times

The EU wants to keep this semiconductor specialist on its territory (photo: Menta)
The EU wants to keep this semiconductor specialist on its territory (photo: Menta)
FRANCE. On Wednesday 2 February 2022, Menta signed a €7.5m financing agreement with the European Investment Bank (EIB), divided into two €3.75m tranches.

Based in Sophia-Antipolis (Valbonne in the Alpes-Maritimes), this specialist in reprogrammable semiconductors groups all the components of a computer on a single chip thanks to eFPGAs (Embedded Field Programmable Gate Array), integrated circuits made up of an array of programmable cells used for "Systems on a Chip" (optimised systems on chips) or SoCs.

Menta is a European pioneer and the only one in the world in this industry to offer the revolutionary eFPGA "soft IP" technology, giving engineers "the opportunity to have a flexible, secure, high-performance and low-power technology", says a release. These in-house eFPGAs are used "by artificial intelligence applications with high processing power and energy efficiency requirements, and whose algorithms are constantly evolving".

For EIB Vice-President Ambroise Fayolle, "this is a critical area for Europe's strategic autonomy, essential for the proper functioning and competitiveness of a large number of activities that depend on their chip supplies. The EU's public bank is playing its part to the full by financing the development of highly promising companies like Menta, whose technologies can put Europe at the forefront of a constantly evolving sector."

Safeguarding some 40 jobs in the EU

The Côte d'Azur start-up intends to speed up the marketing of its innovative products and services thanks to this EIB loan. The loan will also enable the company to maintain around 40 full-time equivalent jobs in the European Union. "At a time when component supply chains are severely disrupted, Europe has the opportunity to relocate part of its semiconductor production on its soil. The unique 100% French technologies and solutions developed by Menta can help to establish Europe as a leader in this strategic sector and create a genuine European microchip supply chain", commented the EIB.

Vincent Markus, President of Menta, is pleased with this financing, which comes "in the context of strong industrial tension on a global scale, which is weighing on production capacities in many sectors, this operation validates our industrial model and will enable us to accelerate our development."

The company works in particular for Thales Alenia Space, the French Defence Procurement Agency (DGA) and the European Defence Agency's EDA-SoC programme (EDA-EDA). It also belongs to the European Processor Initiative (EPI) consortium, which was created in December 2018 and brings together twenty-eight partners from ten European Union countries.

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