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Startup SANchips is banking on being able to deliver a Fibre Channel switch-on-a-chip that would lower the cost of SAN switches to below $100 per port.

Can it be done? Certainly there are doubters. One consultant says SANchips might be able to fit its ASIC on a chip for that price... but what about the print, board, chassis, and other pieces?

We’ve figured all that in,” insists Tony Schehtman, who heads SANChips’ worldwide sales. “You can hold us to it.”

Potential partners and investors will do just that. Schehtman says SANchips is close to signing deals with low-end SAN vendors, pending beta testing of its first chip product, expected about mid-July. He expects testing to take around two months and hopes to have product shipping in systems by the end of the year.

SANchips executives are also trying to round up funding. The startup received $600,000 last year, led by StageOne Venture Partners, and CEO Avi Shillo is counting on raising at least $5 million more to take the company through the next two years.

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