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Nokia Seeks Gold in Mobile Payments Startup Obopay

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Nokia Corp., the world's largest maker of cell phones, is making a large investment in a California-based startup that wants to make the mobile phone the credit card of the developing world. The amount of Nokia's investment in Obopay Inc. of Redwood City was not disclosed Wednesday, but the startup made a regulatory filing this month for the sale of up to $70 million in preferred stock. The filing also noted that Nokia's head of corporate business development, Teppo Paavolo, will get a seat on Obopay's board. The investment is coming from the Finnish cell phone maker's corporate funds, not its venture arms, because Nokia wants a close collaboration with Obopay, said Olivier Cognet Obopay's service, available in the U.S. and India, lets people pay each other through text messages or other cell phone applications. 2

On Wednesday, the company announced its minority stake in Obopay, a mobile payment company that lets people to pay for items from Obopay accounts tied to their mobile phones. Previously, Obopay had raised $69 million in funding, mostly from venture capital firms, though cell phone chipmaker Qualcomm led a $7 million funding round in 2006 1
  1. Nokia Invests in Mobile Payment Company (cnet)
  2. Nokia Seeks Gold in Mobile Payments Startup Obopay (Boston Globe)

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