ItsOn, startup founded by alums from Qualcomm, Nokia and Yahoo that has developed a cloud-based mobile services platform that it sells as both a B2B and B2C product, is today confirming that it has raised a Series C round of $12.5 million from new investor Tenaya Capital and existing investor Andreessen Horowitz.
The funding will be used for global sales expansion outside of North America, the company says.
Although today ItsOn offers a consumer-facing product called Zact, its origins were in the idea that carriers are always looking for ways of being more than just a “bit pipe” by offering data services and features that help them compete against Apple and other OEMs, potentially driving more customer loyalty and higher profit margins.
To be clear, this is not a platform for things like carrier app stores but for services that enhance basic device usage. The types of features that ItsOn allows carriers to implement include things like application-based paid or sponsored plans; controls and upsells for tethering, roaming, speed boosts; on-device plan purchasing and management and other self-service offerings; and parental controls.
“We are now selling our SaaS platform services to large, global mobile operators and our company has transitioned from startup to revenue-growth stage,” said ItsOn founder, CEO and Chairman Greg Raleigh, in a statement. “We are thrilled to partner with the very experienced and successful team at Tenaya to build our company. The purpose of this financing is to accelerate the market launch for our cloud-based virtual OSS and BSS platform and grow our mobile operator customer revenues in Europe, Asia, Middle East and South America.”
While operators are always looking for and trying out solutions like these, ItsOn claims that its solution is easier, faster and cheaper to implement, partly because of the cloud element.
The previous round, for $15.5 million, was led by Andreessen Horowitz with participation also from SV Angel and Jim Davidson. Other strategic investors include Vodafone Ventures and Verizon Investments.
Stewart Gollmer, MD at Tenaya Capital, is joining ItsOn’s board of directors as part of this most recent round.
“Our research shows that mobile operators will replace their current, antiquated, hardware-based OSS and BSS systems with 100 percent cloud-based solutions much more quickly than analysts are projecting,” he said in a statement. “ItsOn is the clear global leader in the virtualization of service policy controls, charging and billing for mobile networks and this is a space that will experience very rapid growth.”