Monday, November 27, 2006

Oz Raises $34 Million - More Good News From Canada

Montreal-based Oz Communications looks poised to make some moves in the mobile messaging market, where they already have done some impressive things. They've got deals going with A-list Tier 1s like Cingular, T Mobile, AOL, Telfonica, Bell Mobility and Telus, plus all the major handset vendors.

Today they announced a second round raise of $34 million, which is quite large for a Canadian vendor. Mind you, I said the same thing last week about Natural Convergence, and that was only a $10 million funding, so in my books, this one definitely merits some attention.

Interestingly, 2 of the 3 lead investors were Quebec-based, which tells me some of the major fund managers see good potential here, and it's a good vote of confidence to support a homegrown company. I say this because Canadian money managers tend to be more conserative than in the U.S., and by local standards, this level of funding is a pretty hefty bet.

As the press release notes, they are not planning an IPO any time soon, but that time will surely come if they stay the course. With this kind of funding to support their strong momentum, I wouldn't be at all surprised to see them make some acquisitions to further establish themselves as a global player.

I've posted about Oz before, and am planning to do a podcast with them quite soon, so stay tuned as I continue to follow their progress.

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