Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Truphone Update -Second round of funding raises USD33m

I posted an entry in January on Truphone and its ambitious plans to become the Skype of the mobile world.

This week the GSMA Mobile Business Briefing reported that Truphone had announced that they had closed a second round of funding worth £16.5 million (US$32.7 million) to help build-out its core GSM network. The news comes just days after the company announced it had acquired SIM4travel, a Mobile Virtual Network Enabler (MVNE) platform with travel SIM capabilities.

The latest cash injection was led by private investors, with all of Truphone's existing backers - Burda Digital Ventures, Eden Ventures, Independent News & Media and Wellington Partners - participating. The company raised £12.5 million in an earlier round of funding last year.

The company plans to enable low-cost GSM calls worldwide using the travel SIM in tandem with its existing mobile VoIP service, which works with high-end devices such as Nokia's N-series and allows free calling between Truphone users. Truphone aims to disrupt the existing mobile marketplace by offering cheaper international calls than the established mobile operators.

The company's infrastructure incorporates a global network of SIP gateways, a Nokia Siemens Networks mobile network Home Location Register (HLR) and a GSM identifier. The infrastructure is capable of supporting 40 million customers worldwide, Truphone says.