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 411mania » Wrestling » News

WWE Invests in Phunware Multiscreen Software Company
Posted by Larry Csonka on 03.20.2014

- The following was sent out today…
Phunware Raises $30 Million to Accelerate Global Leadership in Multiscreen Software Solutions for Up to 50 Billion Connected Devices

Phunware, the pioneer of Multiscreen as a Service (MaaS), the first fully integrated services platform that enables brands to engage, manage and monetize their anytime anywhere users worldwide, today announced that it has raised $26.25 million of Series E funding led by Firsthand Technology Value Fund (NASDAQ: SVVC). The balance of the oversubscribed $30 million funding round is expected to close in the next 60 days.

The initial closing of the round includes additional investment by current investors Fraser McCombs Ventures, Maxima Ventures, Wild Basin Investment and the Central Texas Angel Network (CTAN), as well as new strategic investors Cisco and WWE (NYSE: WWE). The investment brings the total raised by Phunware to $43M. With the investment, Kevin Landis, Chairman and President of Firsthand, and Chase Fraser, Managing Partner of Fraser McCombs Capital, join Phunware's board of directors.

Founded in 2009, and headquartered in Austin, Phunware has achieved dramatic growth since inception and closed 2013 with revenues of $22.1M. The company currently supports more than 1 trillion annual transactions on its "multiscreen cloud platform" across nearly 190 countries and 10 languages. Phunware, The Software of Things™, is ranked # 36 on the Forbes list of America's Most Promising Companies, # 40 on the Inc. 500 list of America's Fastest Growing Companies and # 1 on Austin Business Journal's Fast50 list for Central Texas. The company is responsible for multiscreen infrastructure, software and application development services for an impressive list of top-tier customers including E! Entertainment Television, NBC Sports, WWE, NASCAR, CBS, Qualcomm, Edmunds, Jawbone, HomeAway, Turner, UHealth, Transamerica, King, Warner Brothers, AT&T and Adobe amongst many others.

"Phunware has proven its ability to support the largest brands in the world on the largest stages in the world at scale," said Kevin Landis, Chairman and President of Firsthand. "We are extremely excited to be joining the Phunware team and equally enthusiastic about the company's multiscreen platform vision for the future."

Forrester estimates that the Mobile Services Market will soar to $32.4 billion globally by 2018 (1) and that mobile engagement providers will need strong end-to-end competencies in order to act as providers of record. In parallel, eMarketer estimates that Mobile Ad Spending will balloon to $72.3 billion by 2017 (2), up nearly 10 times over 2012 spending levels. As a result, there is market opportunity exceeding $100 billion for those brands interested in engaging, managing and monetizing the 50 billion connected devices expected to compose the Internet of Things by 2020 (3).

Phunware's fully-integrated, native and mobile-first solutions make it easy for any brand to add multiscreen application support for content management, location based services, advertising, alerts and notifications and business intelligence and analytics through the use of a single login on a single platform with a single partner. This unique and comprehensive solutions-based approach reduces both the cost and complexity that brands have been forced to tolerate historically with an ecosystem filled with fragmented, incomplete and non-integrated point products.

"We continue to have a very ambitious vision for Phunware – to enable our customers to engage, manage and monetize every connected device on Earth," commented Alan S. Knitowski, Chairman, CEO and Co-Founder of Phunware. "We have achieved tremendous growth since inception and this new funding will further accelerate our MaaS platform investments and geographic reach in supporting the multiscreen goals and objectives of our brands' anytime anywhere audiences globally. 50 billion devices will mean 50 billion opportunities … and we intend to touch them all."

For more information about current and upcoming products, as well as case studies from Phunware's impressive list of global brands, please visit http://www.phunware.com.


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