Hybrid telco startup Unlockd is raising almost $40 million to expand overseas

Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Unlockd, the startup telco which rewards mobile phone customers for watching advertisements, is raising $US30 million ($A39 million) for international expansion.

Matt Berriman, CEO and co-founder, revealed the capital raising plans while announcing a partnership deal with Digicel, Jamaica’s largest telecommunications provider.

The hybrid telco with an advertising business launched in the UK in June with Tesco Mobile. In the US, it partnered with Sprint Telecom subsidiary Boost Mobile earlier in the year.

Unlockd closed a $A15 million Series A Round in early 2016 from some of the biggest names in the business community and has recently appointed an advisor to assist with the next capital raising.

In July the company also appointed Sol Trujillo, a former CEO of Telstra, and former Virgin Group CEO David Baxby to the board of directors.

“We are looking to raise $US30 million,” says Berriman.

Matt Berriman, co-founder of Unlockd. Image: Supplied.

“We are focused on markets with high smartphone penetration, combined with large user base and customers open to a value exchange proposition like Unlockd.

“Emerging markets are a strong focus for us and we anticipate several launches in 2017.”

Some of the new capital will be used to invest in product and technology.

“We have had a lot of commercial interest from other telcos around the world wanting to launch our offering to their consumers, so we are looking to further invest in our platform,” he says.

“There are also exciting opportunities to expand into other relevant verticals that we will be making substantial investment in, as the model is readily transferable.”

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