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July 1, 2021
London-based FloLive said it raised a Series B round of funding totaling $15.5 million in its attempts to sell a global IoT device management platform coupled with private wireless 5G options.
Intel Capital led the round of investment, with Qualcomm Ventures, Dell Technologies Capital, 83North and Saban Ventures also participating. The funding is in addition to the $21.5 million round FloLive notched last year. According to TechCrunch, the company is currently working on its Series C funding round.
Much of FloLive's story last year centered on its IoT device management platform, which connected into wireless network operators in various countries around the world in order to provide enterprise customers with an uninterrupted device-management capability for their cross-border Internet of Things (IoT) applications. That offering is similar to IoT management services from companies like Cisco, AT&T and Nokia.
Now, in its funding announcement this week, FloLive is also boasting that its technology can underpin new private wireless 5G networks made possible by the release of unlicensed spectrum such as the 3.5GHz CBRS band in the US.
"We see significant traction in the market for 5G network solutions, with private 5G networks being the indisputable leading solution for both private campuses and national deployments," Nir Shalom, FloLive's CEO, said in a release. Shalom, a former AT&T executive, joined FloLive last year. "While healthcare and Industry 4.0 may be considered the natural customers, one of the emerging sectors is utilities, which is more prone to cyber-attacks, data leakage and foreign espionage; we intend to put more focus on this segment and gain significant market share," he added.
FloLive promises to offer private wireless networking customers a core 5G network and the capability to manage devices across both private and public networks.
In targeting the private wireless trend, FloLive joins a number of other players in the global 5G industry. Startups like Betacom and FreedomFi, mobile network operators like AT&T and Verizon, and equipment makers like Nokia are all hoping to sell equipment and services to utilities, mining companies, manufacturing businesses and others that see value in building their own wide-scale wireless networks.
It's no surprise that so many companies have begun targeting the space as the opportunity may well be significant. For example, Nokia has speculated that the private wireless networking market might ultimately grow to twice the size of the traditional, public wireless network industry.
According to research and consulting firm Dell'Oro Group, revenues from private 5G operations will pass $1 billion by 2025.
"In general we believe the hype around private wireless is more warranted this time around relative to previous enterprise small cell hype cycles, reflecting progress with the five key components – spectrum, technology, awareness, cloud players, and use cases," said analyst Stefan Pongratz with Dell'Oro Group in a release. "But at the same time, we also expect it will take some time for the private wireless market to realize its full potential."
Editorial Director, 5G & Mobile Strategies, Light Reading
Based in Denver, Mike has covered the wireless industry as a journalist for almost two decades, first at RCR Wireless News and then at FierceWireless and recalls once writing a story about the transition from black and white to color screens on cell phones.
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