Telstra Ventures, the investment arm of Australia’s largest mobile operator, joined forces with investment company HarbourVest to streamline the operator’s growing investments in technology companies.
The companies have established a fund focused on early- to late-stage venture investment opportunities in the US, Asia and Australia. In a statement they explained the agreement will involve Telstra Ventures contributing its current investments into the new fund with a continued focus on technology and innovation for future investments.
Telstra CEO Andrew Penn (pictured) said: “Consistent with our Telstra2022 corporate strategy, this initiative will enable us to continue to leverage the benefits of our successful Telstra Ventures activation while supporting future growth with a new source of capital. We will also realise AUD75 million [$55.5 million] from the initial HarbourVest investment.”
HarbourVest MD Tim Flower said the Telstra Ventures team has built an attractive portfolio over the past six years, and “we are pleased to be supporting them alongside Telstra through their next phase of growth”.
Telstra Ventures made a number of acquisitions over the past two years, most recently investing an undisclosed sum in US-based mobile application testing company Headspin in November 2017.
In March 2017 the company invested in US-based VeloCloud Networks as part of the start-up’s latest round of funding, which raised $35 million, and in November 2016 invested in Singular, a mobile analytics company which monitors traffic of many of the world’s most popular mobile apps.