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Qualinx: small size, low cost, low power, always on


With the explosion of the Internet-of-Things (IoT) and the rapid digitalisation of the world around us, semiconductor technology has been catapulted to the forefront of the EU’s strategic objectives. It’s a very complex, technical field, with a fairly limited pool of expertise in both Europe and globally. But its relevance to so many different aspects of our lives and economy has meant that public sector financing has been looking at this space with renewed interest.

“Our aim is quite simple: Low power, low cost, small size, always on,” says Tom Trill, CEO of Qualinx. Qualinx, based in Delft in the Netherlands, specialises in tracking and connectivity solutions. So many applications around us use this technology, but the challenge is getting to lower power consumption, longer life, smaller size, and less environmental impact as well. And that’s a nut that Qualinx is cracking.

As Tom explains, “There’s global concern about the security of any asset, especially as it moves. Most tracking efforts of these assets are satellite-based: from ship to dock, warehouse and to the supermarket for example. But there are lots of break-points in the connectivity. To achieve universal connectivity, you need a multi-chip solution. Most tracking solutions have one chip for Bluetooth connectivity, another for satellites, another for radio etc. We offer a single-chip solution that is universally applicable. And we can deliver that in smaller size than any one of the others and at a lower power envelope and cost. Price, power, performance - all three metrics deliver equal value.”

But developing these breakthrough solutions takes time, talent and significant financing. In 2022, the company received an equity investment from Forward.One, a Dutch venture capital firm backed by the EIF under the new InvestEU programme. “We’re still a few months away from commercialisation and then real volumes, but we have the fundamental IP in place and we are aiming to double the size of our team to around 25, getting ready to move into the production phase.”

Underlining the strategic importance of the company’s work, Tom concludes that what the company is working on is a real game-changer: “This is essential technology for the European semi-conductor industry. We’ve broken a physics barrier that was established for over 40 years, and we have an IP position that’s very unique.”

Location: Delft, Netherlands

Financial intermediaries: Forward.One

SME: Qualinx

Sector: semi-conductors

Number of employees: 12

Financing purpose: product development

EIF Financing: InvestEU; DFF

For further information about EIF intermediaries in The Netherlands, please refer to:

Note: Following the recent withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union, we are updating the relevant EIF.org pages.


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