No. 3 wireless provider T-Mobile said it has launched a new venture capital fund -- T-Mobile Ventures -- aimed at backing early stage companies developing 5G technologies for use on the carrier’s network.
Portfolio companies in the multi-year fund would also benefit from T-Mobile’s network and infrastructure expertise to develop, test and bring to market their products and services. Initially, T-Mobile said it would target companies in the edge computing, security, future of work and industrial Internet of Things (IoT) spaces for the fund.
“T-Mobile Ventures is part of our mission to give customers the best 5G network in the country – one that will serve all Americans, stimulate competition and create tremendous economic value,” said Jason Young, senior vice president of Partnerships and T-Mobile Ventures in a press release. “With our 5G network at the foundation, we see massive opportunity across both business and consumer segments, and we’re excited to help fuel the wave of 5G applications coming to market in the years ahead.”
T-Mobile says its 5G network covers more than 260 million people across nearly 1.4 million square miles. After its $26 billion merger with Sprint, the carrier said it is rolling out mid-band 5G with 2.5 GHz spectrum in more than 200 cities and towns across the country.
“Compelling 5G use cases span the range of spectrum bands from low, mid to high, and only T-Mobile has these assets giving it a 5G network that can support all use cases across every industry,” said Neville Ray, president of Technology at T-Mobile in a press release. “Now is the time for the developers, entrepreneurs and creators to make the magic happen with products and services that will unleash the potential of our 5G network.”
T-Mobile Ventures is working with corporate venture capital firm Touchdown Ventures to help manage the fund.
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Mike Farrell is senior content producer, finance for Multichannel News/B+C, covering finance, operations and M&A at cable operators and networks across the industry. He joined Multichannel News in September 1998 and has written about major deals and top players in the business ever since. He also writes the On The Money blog, offering deeper dives into a wide variety of topics including, retransmission consent, regional sports networks,and streaming video. In 2015 he won the Jesse H. Neal Award for Best Profile, an in-depth look at the Syfy Network’s Sharknado franchise and its impact on the industry.