Below you will find the latest news and updates from Pepperwood Partners.

Published January 20, 2013

Telcentris Raises $5.3M For Calling, Chatting, Faxing (And More) App VoxOx

Telcentris, the maker of “unified communications” appVoxOx, says it has raised $5.3 million in its first institutional funding.

The VoxOx desktop and iPhone apps combine features like VoIP calling, texting, chatting, and faxing; aggregate contact info from Facebook, Twitter, and elsewhere; and offer Google Voice-style support for calling multiple phones with one number. Back in 2008,TechCrunch old-timer John Biggs described it as “not a Skype killer, but close.”

We haven’t heard much from VoxOx recently, but a spokesperson said that’s because 2012 was a “stealth” year on the consumer side, while the company focused on its VoxOx In Business suite. (Telcentris declined to reveal customer or user numbers for either the consumer or enterprise side of its business.)

The new funding comes from SBD Global Fund and will be used to support international growth among other initiatives. It’s part of an open round of up to $40 million that’s being facilitated by investment banking advisory firm Pepperwood Partners. Until now, Telcentris has been funded entirely by angel investors, plus friends and family funding. Nonetheless, it’s actually raised a total of $33 million (including the new round).

“In the few years that VoxOx has been on the market, we’ve gained notable traction around the world, and now it’s time for us to address our global audience in a much bigger way,” said CEO Bryan Hertz in a press release.

source: http://techcrunch.com/2013/01/17/telcentris-voxox-funding/

 

Published January 20, 2013

KRAFTWURX 3D PRINTER FIRST LOOK



VIDEO DESCRIPTION: TechCrunch at CES 2013 on TechCrunch at CES created by TechCrunch

Source: http://on.aol.com/video/kraftwurx-3d-printer-first-look-517638376

 

Published September 20, 2012

Texas – one of the best state for technology businesses and startups

The Top 10 States For Technology

Texas

2011 Ranking: 4
2010 Ranking: 4

An influx in medical research funding and an increase in high-tech businesses helped boost the Lone Star State to the number two spot this year. Texas, home to companies including Dell, Texas Instruments and AT&T, came in second though behind California as the most-connected state and the number of awarded patents.

The state’s capital, Austin, has also gained traction as one of the start-up hubs of the nation.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/48058147/The_Top_10_States_For_Technology?slide=10

 

Published September 20, 2012

Texas Is America's Top State for Business 2012

Texas has done it again.

The Lone Star State makes a triumphant return as America’s Top State for Business—its third time at the top of our rankings

http://www.cnbc.com/id/47818860/

Published September 05, 2012

Qples Inc Announces Key Advisory Board Selections

Qples Continues to Lead the Digital Coupon Industry With Forward-Thinking Ideas and Individuals

DALLAS, Sept. 5, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Qples Inc, a leading provider of next generation digital coupons, announced today the appointment of an Advisory Board consisting of leading national and international business personalities with backgrounds ranging from former director of technology at Broadcast.com (which later sold to Yahoo! for more than 5 billion) to former Apple VP of Software which led the development of such products as Quicktime multimedia.

"We're very excited to bring Patrick SeamanRick Spitz and Steve Markwardt to the Qples' Advisory Board," said Qples' CEO, Brandi Johnson. "We're thrilled to have them on board and are eager to learn and grow from their vast technology and business experience as we expand in the US and globally."   

Patrick Seaman currently serves as the Chief Technology Advisor for Pepperwood Partners where he advises portfolio companies (like Qples), and was most recently deployed as an embedded COO and Chief Strategy Officer at Cinsay, Inc. Since 2008, Patrick has also served as CTO of WhichBox Media, a cloud-based content creation, management and social media platform named one of the top 100 disruptive online media companies in the OnMedia 100 in 2010 and 2012. Patrick was the first employee and served as Director of Technology at AudioNet/broadcast.com, then owned by Mark Cuban, which was later sold to Yahoo! for more than $5 billion.

At broadcast.com, Seaman launched the first commercial radio station on the Internet, and led the build-out of the first network of Internet radio stations as part of the first Internet Content Delivery Network. Prior to broadcast.com's buyout by Yahoo! Seaman launched and served on the board of broadcast.com Japan. Patrick authored the first major book about online media, Website Sound.

Rick Spitzbrings more than 20 years of experience in Internet technology, marketing and advertising. Mr. Spitz currently serves as a strategic technology advisor to Cinsay Inc and Pepperwood. Previously, Mr. Spitz founded and served as CTO for ReachLocal (RLOC) where he coauthored patents on local advertising and proxy technology. During his time with ReachLocal, the company achieved awards such as #37 on Inc 500, and #1 on Deloitte's fast 500, growing to over 1200 employees and doing business in 5 countries. 

As CTO/VP of Development at WorldWinner.com, he played a key role in that company's transition from startup to a business serving more than 5 million players. Prior to that, he was VP of Product Development for Decalog Inc. (a division of Sungard), where he headed development of financial applications used by the likes of Citicorp, Warburg Pincus and AXA. Spitz came to Sungard from Apple Computer in Cupertino, California where, as VP of Software, he led the Macintosh software development organization in defining and developing such notable Mac products as System 7, Power PC and Quicktime multimedia.

Steve Markwardt brings more than 30 years of business experience, having been involved in numerous successful businesses. He was a partner in Encon Industries, where he was instrumental in the company's rapid growth, with operations on a world-wide scale. Steve served on the Board of Directors of Flashnet Communications, an Internet provider company, and helped guide the company to a highly successful IPO. Mr. Markwardt is currently a managing partner in Markwardt Investments and SBM Properties, a private equity investment group with diversified holdings in international businesses and real estate ventures.

About Qples Inc

Industry:

Internet Technology (SaaS) - Digital and Mobile Coupons - Rich Media (social, local, mobile, e-commerce, video, etc.)

Qples Inc. is a Software as a Service (SaaS) platform which allows for a dynamically different approach to drive coupons, deals, and discounts to consumers across social and mobile channels. Patent-pending technologies have positioned the growing company to disrupt the way digital coupons are discovered and redeemed, adding unprecedented benefits for both the consumer and participating brands. With a 98%+ print success rate, as compared to an industry standard closer to 50-60%, and industry leading security and analytics, Qples is solving problems other businesses in the industry simply have yet to do and brands and users are taking notice.

Through proprietary coupon delivery platforms, such as the first true Facebook™ integrated digital coupon application, Qples integrates rich media advertising, and e-commerce experiences to maximize revenue through user engagement. Qples provides a disruptive and cost effective way for brands and businesses to accurately market to consumers across social, local and mobile channels. Additionally, the highly viral content and coupons can be linked to redemptions and other forms of ROI. For more information visit, www.qples.com or contact:

Contact

Qples, CEO Brandi Johnson:   http://www.linkedin.com/in/brandiljohnson
Qples, CTO Jay Johnson:        http://www.linkedin.com/pub/jayjohnsonqples


http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/news.html?d=10004089

 

Published August 22, 2012

OTT Services: How Operators can overcome the Fragmentation of Communication (Video)

 

It is no secret that Operators are waking up to the significance of OTT. But how are they responding? How is the market developing? And, most importantly, what is the best strategy for Operators to succeed in the new OTT landscape? Thorsten Trapp, CTO of tyntec -- a German mobile interaction specialist -- is a much sought-after interview partner on the topic of OTT, as he not only recognized the developments in the OTT field many years ago, but also set about developing an operator-friendly solution. Here, Thorsten discusses the latest figures and forecasts of mobileSQUARED's whitepaper and what they mean for Operators.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pOevR-dcQq8&feature=relmfu

 

Published August 15, 2012

20 Life-Changing Realizations from the World’s
Youngest VC

Great Article for entrepreneurs and those in the investment community...

20 life-changing realizations from the world’s youngest VC - venturebeat.com

Guest Post With only a few days left being a teenager, just thinking about what happened this past year gives me chills.

http://venturebeat.com/2012/08/14/life-changing-realizations-youngest-vc/

 

Published August 07, 2012

Telcentris, Creator of VoxOx, Adds Pertti Johansson, Former Qualcomm President and Motorola GM, as EVP
of Global Business Development

Highly accomplished, entrepreneurial senior executive with more than 35 years of telecom and wireless operations, technology and business expertise to lead company’s international mobile initiatives

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) August 07, 2012

Telcentris® Inc., a leader in cloud communications and the creator of VoxOx® and VoxOx In Business™, today announced that the company has appointed Pertti Johansson as its executive vice president, overseeing global business development. In his more than 35 years of leadership experience in the technology field, Johansson has generated billions in sales, leading geographically diverse organizations throughout the U.S., Europe, Asia, Middle East, Africa and Latin America. He has held senior leadership roles at Qualcomm Incorporated and Motorola Corporation, having served for more than a decade at the latter. Johansson’s new role will focus on developing and deploying the company’s international mobile strategy by collaborating with major mobile operators on VoxOx co-branding opportunities to deliver customized services to their user base.

In the past few years, mobile operators around the world have increasingly experienced competition and revenue erosion caused by the popularity of over-the-top services, such as Skype and lesser known messaging apps. Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services have displaced a significant amount of operator voice revenue while messaging services have reduced significant SMS and MMS revenue streams once walled off from outside competition.

“We’ve recently been involved in discussions with leading mobile operators all over the world in order to forge partnerships that will help combat the threat of over-the-top applications and instead provide a solution that allows them to proactively retain their user base and as much revenue as possible,” said Bryan Hertz, CEO of Telcentris. “Pertti’s long-standing relationships with telecom operators worldwide make him invaluable in leading these discussions. We are excited to have him join the executive team.“

Most recently, Johansson held senior management positions at Powerwave Technologies Inc., a global supplier of cellular coverage, where he was responsible for Latin America sales, and Monitise Group, a leading mobile banking services provider, where he oversaw wireless activity to develop new services, solutions and partnerships. Previously, Johansson served as president, Europe/MEA at Qualcomm. In this position, Johansson was the chief executive, strategist and main driver for Qualcomm penetration into the European, Middle East and Africa markets. There he led strategy, business development and operations for the region, overseeing early expansion of Qualcomm’s WCDMA (UMTS) networks.

Earlier in his career, Johansson spent more than 15 years at Motorola Corporation, where he pioneered and led Motorola’s international cellular network success in global strategy, sales, marketing, implementation and operations throughout the world. During the first 12 years, he built Motorola’s international cellular network business from four customers to 120, growing annual revenues from 50 million to five billion dollars. He also initiated the company’s cellular business in China, developing strong local partnerships and growing operation to 400 people and revenue to one billion dollars per year. He also negotiated and sold the first wireless network contracts in Europe, Japan, Southeast Asia, Latin America, Middle East and Africa, as well as lobbied for deregulation and privatization of cellular in India on behalf of the company. Before Motorola, he spent more than a decade at ITT Corporation, a $40 billion conglomerate, in various engineering, marketing and management positions for fixed line switching and transmission solutions.

Johansson graduated from the Helsinki Institute of Technology with a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering, specializing in telecommunication. He has served on more than a dozen boards of directors globally between 1999 and the present, and still maintains his position on four of these boards, including an active position on the Africa Broadband Forum, which promotes broadband development in Africa and assists new and established operators to gain knowledge about best practices and solutions.

“I am looking forward to taking the company’s mobile strategy to the next level,” said Johansson. “With the advent of smartphones and popularity of mobile VoIP and rich messaging technology, there’s significant interest from operators in regaining the ability to better monetize their user base. The VoxOx strategy provides some unique solutions for operators and will allow them to participate in the fast changing consumer behavior rather than being disrupted by it. I’m thrilled to be at the helm of this initiative.”

For more information on the Telcentris management team, please visit http://www.telcentris.com. To learn more about VoxOx, please visit http://www.voxox.com.

About Telcentris®, Inc. 
Telcentris is an innovator in cloud-based unified communications and VoIP solutions for consumer, business and wholesale markets. For consumers, Telcentris delivers VoxOx, a free service that integrates voice, text, chat, fax, social networking and more. For businesses, Telcentris provides VoxOx In Business – a complete suite of VoIP business phone solutions that are more cost effective, efficient and easier to manage than traditional phone systems. Through a wholesale division, Telcentris also offers turnkey VoIP solutions and carrier services. The foundation of the company’s offerings is its award-winning unified communications platform in the cloud that enables the company and its customers to build powerful, scalable applications and services. Founded in 2006, Telcentris is headquartered in San Diego. For more information, please visit telcentris.com.

http://www.prweb.com/releases/PerttiJohanssonEVP/VoxOxbyTelcentris/prweb9762055.htm

 

Published July 31, 2012

Qples First to Market With Digital Coupons on Facebook and Pinterest

Written by TradersHuddle Staff

Qples Adds the First Digital Coupons to Facebook and Pinterest

Qples Continues to Redefine the Digital Coupon Industry

DALLAS, July 31, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Qples Inc., a leading provider of next generation digital coupons, announced today that it is the first-ever coupon platform that integrates with both Facebook™ and Pinterest™. For the first time, brands are now able to deliver manufacturer-level digital coupons, including unprecedented fraud prevention features, into the world's number one and number three social networking sites (Twitter™ is #2). The ability to share coupons on these social networking sites is a game-changer for the digital couponing industry.

The digital couponing market is growing at rates of over 40% per year and Qples' success can't be argued. In under a year, Qples has generated over a million users and two million coupons printed. With a 98%+ print success rate, as compared to an industry standard closer to 50-60%, and industry leading security and analytics, Qples is clearly the industry leader.

By making coupons easier than ever to create and distribute, share and redeem, Qples truly is the "Coupon for the People." While some digital coupon providers offer the simple ability to email coupons to friends, Qples' patent-pending social technology allows coupons to be shared instantly and spread rapidly, garnering more reach for businesses and brands. Coupons can now go viral.

"Our vision has been to bring simple and secure digital coupons to users and brands in the social spaces where they live," says Qples CEO Brandi Johnson. "We felt that there had to be a better way, and that's what we've delivered!"

Featured/example Qples can be found at:

http://featured.qples.com

About Qples Inc

Industry:

Internet Technology (SaaS)

Digital and Mobile Coupons

Rich Media (social, local, mobile, e-commerce, video, etc.)

Qples offers a Software as a Service (SaaS) platform, providing digital and mobile coupon solutions while delivering rich media and advertising experiences. Qples delivers digital, mobile, and social marketing solutions that connect brands with consumers.

Through proprietary coupon delivery platforms, Qples integrates rich media advertising, and e-commerce experiences to maximize revenue through user engagement. Qples provides a disruptive and cost effective way for brands and businesses to accurately market to consumers across social, local and mobile channels. Additionally, the highly viral content and coupons can be linked to redemptions and other forms of ROI. For more information visit, www.qples.comor contact:

Contact

Qples, CEO Brandi Johnson:   http://www.linkedin.com/in/brandiljohnson

Qples, CTO Jay Johnson:        http://www.linkedin.com/in/jayjohnsonqples


Published July 25, 2012

WhichBox Media CEO Again Named MTBC 'Tech Titan Award' Finalist

Metroplex Technology Business Council (MTBC) names Bettina Bennett a finalist for the 2012 Tech Titan Emerging Company CEO Award

Dallas, TX -- Jul 25, 2012 / (http://www.myprgenie.com) -- Social Publishing(TM) technology leader Bettina Bennett, CEO and Chief Maverick of WhichBox Media, was named a finalist for the 2012 Tech Titan Emerging Company CEO award, by the Metroplex Technology Business Council (MTBC), the largest technology trade organization in Texas. Bennett was previously a finalist for the award in 2010.

This year marks the 12th Annual Tech Titans awards, recognizing outstanding technology companies and individuals in the North Texas area whose ideas have elevated technology in North Texas.

Since it's founding in 2008, WhichBox Media has repeatedly been recognized as a ground breaking and industry disruptive innovator. Awarded OnMedia 100 Top Private Company awards in both 2010 and 2012, WhichBox Media also received a 2010 New York Venture Summit Top Innovator award.

"I am very honored to have now been a finalist *twice* for this prestigious award! More to the point, I'm honored that our vision for the intersection of content, community and social media continues to inspire and challenge marketing and publishing preconceptions."

The Tech Titans Award winners will be revealed at the Tech Titans Awards gala event, on August 24, 2012.

About WhichBox Media
WhichBox Media's next generation Software as a Service platform brings together content, community and social for anybody, on any media, anywhere, anytime and on any device. For example, a seven-year-old online newspaper migrated to the WhichBox Platform and within 12 months saw 50% audience growth and 75% revenue. Contact us to learn more.

About the Tech Titans Awards
The Tech Titans Awards were launched in 2001 by the Metroplex Technology Business Council, North Texas' most comprehensive organization supporting technology.

The Tech Titans awards gala is a black-tie event celebrating the achievements of cutting-edge leaders from more than 4,000 tech companies whose ideas have elevated technology in North Texas. The prestigious annual contest recognizes outstanding information technology companies and individuals in the North Texas area who have made contributions during the past year locally, as well as to the technology industry overall. The MTBC works to establish the DFW region as the premier hub of world-class tech innovation. Help us help tech in North Texas live.

For more information, visit www.techtitans.org

About The MTBC
Founded in 1994, the Metroplex Technology Business Council (MTBC) is a non-profit organization composed of approximately 300 members that include technology businesses and providers from across the DFW Metroplex. The MTBC produces numerous events, including monthly Management Luncheons, Technical Luncheons, RFID Special Interest Group events, CEO Forums, Tech Week in Austin and the annual Tech Titans Awards and Fast Tech event.

Contact: Patrick Seaman, info@whichboxmedia.com, 214-350-6649 

 

Published July 19, 2012

Qples Inc Engages Investment Banking Advisory Firm Pepperwood Partners LLC

New Platform and Patented Technologies Excite Investors and Set the Course to Disrupt the Digital Coupon Market

DALLAS, July 19, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Qples Inc, a leading provider of next generation digital coupons, announced today that it has retained the Dallas investment banking advisory firm, Pepperwood Partners to assist with its Series A capital round. Pepperwood and Qples previously worked to successfully secure seed capital. Qples' Software as a Service (SaaS) platform allows for a dynamically different approach to drive coupons, deals, and discounts to consumers across social and mobile channels. Patent-pending technologies have positioned the start-up to change the way digital coupons are discovered and redeemed, adding unprecedented benefits for both the consumer and participating brands.

"We're excited with the reception Qples is receiving from investors," said Michael O'Donnell, Managing Partner, Pepperwood Partners. "In under a year Qples has generated a million users, and two million coupons printed. Their initial success in the digital coupon market has proven their model and businesses are eager for their services. With a 98%+ print success rate, as compared to an industry standard closer to 50-60%, and industry leading security and analytics, they are solving problems other businesses in the industry cannot and as a result, Qples will find a strong position in the large and growing market."

Qples provides digital, mobile and social marketing solutions that connect brands with customers. With over $1.2 billion worth of digital coupons issued each year and growing, new providers are grasping for a share of the market. Qples is the first to provide coupons that can be integrated across social sites including Facebook and Pinterest, easily shared at the click of a button. With secure and user-friendly technology, Qples are "coupons people share".

Simple. Social. Secure.

The cost-effective Qples platform is available at a fraction of the cost of traditional coupon services, and charges no pay-per-print fee. With over 8 levels of fraud prevention, including one-print-per-customer, advanced validation and direct-to-printer technology, companies can feel secure knowing their coupons will not be misused.

Businesses have seen dramatic increases in social media followers when using Qples technology. Bumble Bee Foods, Inc. saw and 116% increase in fans in just 38 hours when issuing a $1.00 off coupon online and Jardine's Foods grew from zero to 2,200 likes and 60,836 impressions in only one day.

About Qples Inc

Industry:

Internet Technology (SaaS)

Digital and Mobile Coupons

Rich Media (social, local, mobile, e-commerce, video, etc.)

Qples offers a Software as a Service (SaaS) platform, providing digital and mobile coupon solutions while delivering rich media and advertising experiences. Qples delivers digital, mobile, and social marketing solutions that connect brands with consumers.

Through proprietary coupon delivery platforms, Qples integrates rich media advertising, and e-commerce experiences to maximize revenue through user engagement. Qples provides a disruptive and cost effective way for brands and businesses to accurately market to consumers across social, local and mobile channels. Additionally, the highly viral content and coupons can be linked to redemptions and other forms of ROI. For more information visit, www.qples.com.

Article Link: http://finance.yahoo.com/news/qples-inc-engages-investment-banking-140413171.html

 

Published May 14, 2012

Pepperwood Partners' O'Donnell on why PE loves Russia (Video)

 

Michael O'Donnell, managing partner at private equity investment banking and financial services firm Pepperwood Partners LLC, discusses Russia at the ACG InterGrowth 2012 conference. O'Donnell also explains the key functions of Pepperwood Partners' Master Family Office initiative. - Sarah Hashim-Waris