Axel Technologies, a Finnish multistandard mobile TV technology startup, has received EUR 2.4 million Series B investment from Nexit Ventures and Finnish Industry Investment Ltd. The investors are the same as in the first round approx a year ago. The funding will be used to strengthen Axel’s sales and marketing operations to cover the global market, and to "intensify R&D efforts focused on anticipated developments in the mobile TV market", i.e., bridging the gap between the fragmented regional and global mobile TV technology solutions and standards.
Axel Technologies develops mobile TV technology enabling device manufactures to bring mobile TV to all portable devices, like mobile internet devices, portable media players, netbooks, and car navigators. Axel claims to support all most important mobile TV standards, and provides also Java and native UI client with features like service guide, purchases, live TV and on-demand video. Axel also statedly has the world’s only authentic DVB-H field test network.
So far mobile TV hasn't taken off that well globally outside Japan and South Korea, although Axel Technologies' press release quotes estimates that mobile TV subscribers are forecasted to reach 250 million by 2010. There are quite a many obstacles still in getting profitable business running around mobile TV, though, as the value chain is pretty long and complex with many stakeholders (manufacturers, wireless carriers, content providers, technology providers, broadcasters, ...). Even in South Korea the popular services are apparently not profitable. Anyway, Axel aims to remove the technology bottleneck, after which "the content offered by broadcasters and operators will determine the success of the service” as Pekka Salonoja, General Partner of Nexit Ventures and the Chairman of Axel Technologies, comments.
Full press release.