Acquisition by Neustar Inc.
Carmel was the first VC to invest in Followap, taking an active role in the company from the outset. The investment in Followap was led by Rina Shainski, who became an active Board Member of the company and worked closely with Followap’s founders and management team from the initial investment and till the successful acquisition of the company by NeuStar. Since 2003, Shlomo Dovrat has also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Company and took an active role in guiding Followap to become a market leader. Doron Inbar, Carmel’s Venture Partner was actively involved as a Director in the last year prior to the exit.
Followap was a leading provider of next-generation communications solutions for network operators, delivering interoperability between operators and Internet portals in five different functional areas: instant messaging, presence, multimedia gateways, inter-carrier messaging hubs, and services for handset clients. Working with Europe’s leading mobile and fixed-line operators, Followap had a customer base of 17 mobile network operators (MNOs) with over 160 million subscribers including customers, such as Vodafone, Turkcell, 3 Group (Hutchison), Wind and Mobinil.
Throughout the years, Carmel coached and mentored Followap’s management team, who led the company to its exit. The Carmel team actively participated in all financing rounds, helped close the first customer sales, assisted in management recruitment and in strategic guidance. This reflects our “hands-on” investment strategy approach to building global category leaders and realizing value for our investors.
In November 2006, Neustar acquired Followap for $139 million in cash.