Google joins VCs in $25m funding round

Three leading venture capital firms have joined forces with internet search giant Google to back Ubiquisys, a 3G mobile phone access provider.

The three venture backers of Ubiquisys, a 3G mobile access provider, have been joined by internet search engine Google in the company’s latest $25 million (€18 million) funding round.

Accel Partners, Atlas Venture and Advent Venture Partners, all of whom backed Ubiquisys at the Series A stage, have teamed up with Google as the firms look to take the company through to target retail customers.

Ubiquisys provides 3G femtocell access points, which make it easier for 3G mobile users to receive high-quality mobile coverage in their homes. The product, which is branded as ZoneGate, plugs into existing broadband and other access points. It is currently in the test stage and the next funding round should enable the company to target the retail sector.

Chris Gilbert, chief executive of Ubiquisys, said:, “A non-vc coming in as a strategic investor is good in its own right but the fact it is Google is very exciting indeed. This is because femtocell is one of the hottest things in the wireless industry because it will up speed, mobile broadband capacity and coverage in the home.”

In four to six weeks his company will have production quality, in the fourth quarter products will go on sale to select customers and by April the product range will be deployed.

Other previous Google venture investments to provide alternative access to the internet include broadband company Current Communications and wi-fi company Fon.

The search firm was itself venture-backed. It made huge returns for Sequoia Capital and Kleiner Perkins Caulfield Byers and Sun Microsystems.