Am I the only one who is slightly gob-smacked at the amount of money that mobile television company MobiTV has collected in its recent round of financing? (Looks like Down The Avenue shares my amazement). Just months after getting a whopping $70-million — which already seemed a little excessive — the company has been handed another $30-million. Is MobiTV really that great, or is there just so much money sloshing around in the Valley that people can’t get rid of it fast enough?
I expect it’s probably a little bit of both. As more than one person has noted, Web 2.0 companies (or whatever you want to call them) in many cases require a whole lot less financing than traditional technology companies, and that combined with a conspicuous lack of IPOs has left VCs with truckloads of cash backing up and effectively going to waste. And there’s no question that MobiTV is cool — or rather, still cool, since it’s been around since 1999 — although I question how big the market for watching TV on a cellphone really is.
In any case, $100-million is a gigantic pile of money. I just hope that MobiTV can find something worthwhile to do with it. Greg Sterling wonders if MobiTV is becoming the next Webvan. Let’s put it this way: If they start having rooftop parties with free drinks and performances by hot bands, look out. Rafat Ali at PaidContent is also bearish.