Cyanogen made headlines a few weeks back by announcing its intention to wrestle control of Android away from Google, a bold claim to say the least. While it may not seem like a small software startup could take a multi-billion dollar technology behemoth’s own operating system away from it, Cyanogen is getting quite a lot of support from companies that think it’s capable of doing just that. Big names like Qualcomm and Twitter have joined in on an $80 million round of Series C funding for the startup.
Cyanogen Inc., a leading mobile operating system pure-play, announced the completion of an $80 million round of Series C financing. With offices in Palo Alto and Seattle, the company will leverage the infusion of new funding to hire talent and accelerate the development of its open OS platform. The financing was led by Premji Invest and includes participation from new strategic investors Twitter Ventures, Qualcomm Incorporated, Telefónica Ventures, Smartfren Telecom, Index Ventures, Access Industries (the US-based industrial group headed by Len Blavatnik), Rupert Murdoch, Vivi Nevo, and several yet to be announced partners. Existing investors Benchmark, Andreessen Horowitz, Redpoint Ventures, and Tencent Holdings Ltd. also participated. “We’re committed to creating an open computing platform that fundamentally empowers the entire mobile ecosystem from developers to hardware makers, and most importantly, consumers around the world,” said Kirt McMaster, CEO of Cyanogen Inc. “We’re excited to have the backing of an amazingly diverse group of strategic investors who are supporting us in building a truly open Android.”