NEW YORK: iSkoot Inc., a provider of software that enable Skype and other Internet calling platforms to run on cell phones, has raised $7 million (Rs3,083 crore) in venture capital funding from a group of investors led by Charles River Ventures.
Three previous investors — Khosla Ventures, ZG Ventures, and Jesselson Capital Corp. — also took part in the new round of funding, which brings the total now raised by iSkoot to $13.2 million.
iSkoot, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, develops software for mobile phones that enables users to make calls over the handset’s wireless Internet connection just as they might on a high-speed DSL or cable modem connection at home.
Cell phone companies have been wary of such applications because they make money from connecting calls themselves, and they say such uses of their data connections may clog their networks.
But late last year, iSkoot scored a key deal with the European wireless carrier 3 Group to enable its cell phones to make Internet calls using eBay Inc.’s popular Skype service. The deal with 3 Group, a unit of Hong Kong-based Hutchison Whampoa Ltd, marked the first carrier authorized offering of a Skype-to-mobile service. The iSkoot software will come preloaded on certain phones, including Nokia and Sony Ericsson handsets.