Amadeus Capital Partners, the technology investor, is leading a 5 million euro venture funding of Smartner Information Systems, a leading provider of mobile email and office solutions. As part of the transaction, Smartner has acquired Amadeus portfolio company Commtag, in an all share deal recently announced. The combined companies represent Europe’s number one provider of mobile email software for operators and service providers. Eqvitec Partners, IT Provider and Sitra, existing investors in Smartner, are all participating in this round.
Smartner, based in Helsinki, provides mobile operators and service providers with software that allows their business customers real time access from mobile devices to their office systems. Current customers include Vodafone Ireland, Swisscom Mobile and Radiolinja. Smartner is also an “advanced business partner” of IBM and has just been listed as one of the Tornado 100 most promising and innovative emerging technology companies in Europe. The new funding, which is expected to take Smartner through to profitability, will be used to build on the company’s product range and expand its sales organisation.
Cambridge-based Commtag, a wireless software company which Amadeus backed in March 2001, had built a highly successful business with its award-winning Duality product, based on “push” technology that complements Smartner’s products. Customers include CIBC, BMG and Dorsey and Whitney. Commtag also has a strategic partnership with Microsoft that complements Smartner’s IBM relationship.
Commenting on the investment and merger, Andrea Traversone of Amadeus, who joins Smartner’s Board, said: “The mobile data market is at an inflection point, triggered by the only truly successful corporate mobile application thus far: mobile email/PIM. The deployment of this application, which will accelerate with Smartphones and PDAs, has only been held back by the absence of software middleware that meets the differing needs of operators and enterprises. Smartner’s products were the first to address this need and now, with Commtag’s push technology, Smartner can storm the market”.
“With operator customers such as Vodafone and enterprise customers such as CIBC, Smartner has already stamped its leadership on the European market,” said Robert Rasmus, Smartner’s CEO. “With the support of our major partners including both IBM and Microsoft, Smartner is entering an exciting period where it is poised to catch the wave of mobile enterprise data adoption. This financing will allow us to grow our business and be even more aggressive in pursuing the opportunities that the market for mobile office solutions is opening up for us… We see it as a major achievement to have attracted this money in the current market”.