Boris Johnson’s MMC London Fund makes investment into mobile firm Somo

MMC Ventures has made its fourth play from its MMC London Fund a day after it was officially launched at City Hall in London.

Mobile marketing company Somo has been backed by the MMC London Fund through an undisclosed investment.

The MMC London Fund, targeted at businesses in the capital, is managed by the Mayor of London Boris Johnson and is part financed using a grant from the European Regional Development Fund.

Somo’s newly-acquired investment capital will be used to expand and develop its licensed mobile technology products and platforms.

To date, the MMC London Fund has backed four companies – with previous transactions seeing mobile firm Masabi, holiday home business LoveHomeSwap and digital talent marketplace MBA & Company secure capital.

It was formally launched on 8 April at a ceremony at London’s City Hall where Kit Malthouse, deputy mayor of London for business and enterprise, spoke.

Its latest portfolio company, Somo, was founded in 2009 and has clients including Red Bull, Audi and Groupon using its mobile products. Across its two London offices and San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York and Singapore bases, it has 125 staff. A new London office has been set up to focus on the design and development of mobile advertising solutions and enterprise grade mobile platforms.

Nick Hynes, co-founder and CEO of Somo, says, ‘We couldn’t be more proud to be marking Somo’s four fantastic years in this fast-paced business by announcing new investment from MMC Ventures.

‘Our new tech and engineering hub is a demonstration of how we are building a centre of mobile expertise and experience that leads the world. This investment will allow us to grow even faster.’

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The £11 million MMC London Fund has been set up to invest in London’s ‘most important strategic business sectors’, as defined by the Mayor’s Economic Development Strategy. Managed by MMC Ventures, it is set up as a matching fund, with a further  £11 million of capital coming from the European Regional Development Fund.

Under the terms of the fund, the portfolio must meet certain equality and sustainability objectives, and be sought from across a broad cross-section of SMEs throughout London’s 33 boroughs, with a portion of the fund focused on more deprived boroughs including Hackney and Tower Hamlets.

Rory Stirling, investment partner at MMC Ventures, adds, ‘Somo’s incredible work, client list, and growth stands testament to its hugely experienced and forward-looking executive team.

‘MMC backs UK businesses with international potential, and having glimpsed what Somo has planned for the future, we are confident that they are positioned to be one of the global success stories of the decade.’

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter was the Editor for from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.

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