Analytics/Big Data

Telco Analytics Firm Raises $30M

Guavus Inc., a communications data analytics specialist, has raised $30 million to help fund its planned international expansion and invest further in product development. (See Guavus Raises $30M.)

The San Mateo, Calif.-based company, formed in 2006, has been targeting major communications service providers (CSPs) with its Service Provider Information Technology (SPIT) systems for several years and already claims to have two Tier 1 U.S. mobile operators, one of which is Sprint Nextel Corp., and three of the top five IP backbone operators as customers. (The company isn't naming any customer names, other than Sprint, but CEO Anukool Lakhina is set to make a presentation with the director of wireless network planning and design from Verizon Communications Inc. at a TM Forum event later this month, so it looks like Verizon is the other major U.S. mobile customer.)

Now it's looking to expand and will use the new round of cash to expand its operations and invest in product development. Guavus already has staff active outside the U.S., including a U.K.-based VP of client services for EMEA and Asia/Pacific, former Lucent staffer Rowan Scranage, and a team of R&D engineers in Gurgaon, India.

Scranage told Light Reading recently that the company had attracted interest from European operators with its claims of being able to set up a new trial deployment and deliver proof-of-concept results within six weeks.

The telecom analytics space is a key area of development for many traditional SPIT firms, but Guavus believes its initial approach of identifying the key "Big Data" challenges facing operators, and then developing software to meet those needs, will help give it a competitive edge. Scranage also notes that, unlike other data collection and analysis systems, Guavus's software screens the vast volumes of data created constantly by networks, devices and subscribers for particular data types, stripping out vast quantities of data that provide no insight and feeding only "useful" data into analytics engines.

The new cash injection, which takes the company's total investments to $78 million, comes from Investor Growth Capital (IGC), QuestMark Partners, Artiman Ventures, Sofinnova Ventures and Intel Capital.

The company, which unveiled its mobile network-specific applications in December, has almost 400 staff spread across North America, Europe and Asia/Pacific, including about 50 "data scientists." (See Guavus Intros Big Data Tool for Mobile Ops.)

Why this matters
It's always noteworthy when a privately held SPIT company raises new funds, especially to the tune of $30 million, an amount that suggests Guavus is planning a major push in 2013 that could include strategic acquisitions.

And with Tier 1 accounts already secured, the company has a ready-made pedigree that should attract significant attention, given that analytics and "Big Data" are key concerns amongst CSPs right now.

This funding should not only put Guavus on the radar of potential customers but also attract attention from rivals such as EMC Corp., IBM Corp., Neualitic, The Now Factory and others. (See TrueMove Analyzes Data With Neuralitic, CSL Deploys The Now Factory's CEM and Amdocs Analyzes Analytics.)

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— Ray Le Maistre, International Managing Editor, Light Reading

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