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Ray Ozzie

SEC Filing: Ray Ozzie’s Startup Talko Raises $4 Million To Develop Cloud-Based Mobile Backend Services

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According to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, Ray Ozzie’s startup, Talko, has raised $4 million to fund the development of its mobile communications apps and services.

Little is known about the company except that it is developing communications software and tools for social interaction. Ozzie talked earlier this year about how the company, formerly known as Cocomo, will provide backend cloud services.

Ozzie’s Talko team includes co-founder Matt Pope; the two worked together at Groove Networks and Microsoft. Ransom Richardson, who has also worked with Ozzie at Groove and Microsoft, is a part of the executive team, as well.

Ozzie originally gained fame for Lotus Notes, the company he sold to IBM. He later moved on to Microsoft, where he replaced Bill Gates as chief software architect. Ozzie left Microsoft in 2010 in part due to a conflict with Steve Sinofsky, the Microsoft executive who was recently let go as the president of the Windows division.

It looks like Talko will compete in the Mobile Backend as a Service (MBaaS) market. The idea is to remove the complexity for mobile developers so they can focus on developing apps, not setting up the backend environment.

The MBaaS market is a golden niche intended to help customers bridge the solutions of old with the service of this new age of IT. To do that, companies like Kinvey are offering services that do much of the backend work that is often the bane of an organization as it seeks to bridge new and old systems.

Kinvey offers its service through an API, which offers a gateway to iOS, Android, and JavaScript libraries that have access to a RESTful app data store, a CDN-enabled large file store, push notifications, geo-queries with third-party points-of-interest data, mobile analytics, backend versioning, user management, and data-level privacy and security access controls.

Parse, Feed Henry, Apigeee and Kii Cloud are some of the other companies that compete in this market.

If indeed Talko does offer a cloud backend then it will have to be an API. It’s a play that makes sense, considering Ozzie and his other co-founders familiarity with legacy, backend systems.