Cubic Telecom to create 70 new jobs after landing US$5.2m investment

24 May 2013

Irish technology company Cubic Telecom is to create 70 new jobs after securing US$5.2m in funding from US telecoms tech giant Qualcomm, ACT Venture Capital, TPS Investments and Enterprise Ireland.

The new jobs will be created over the next three years with the majority of them – 50 positions – based at Cubic’s new Sandyford headquarters in Dublin with the remainder deployed across the world.

In less than 10 years Cubic Telecom has evolved from a start-up based in Cork specialising in voice and data roaming services to a licensed telecoms company in its own right, providing software-defined network services to more than 500 mobile operators and some of the top Fortune 100 OEM manufacturers of smartphones, tablets and notebook computers.

The company’s technology effectively provides anytime, anywhere in the world voice and data coverage for device owners by turning a SIM chip into its own operating system.

Cubic’s management team boast more than 200 years’ worth of telecoms industry experience and in terms of intellectual property the company has developed more than 340 APIs.

Cubic Telecom CEO Barry Napier – who as well as announcing the jobs is currently cycling across Spain as part of the CyclingBuddy 300-mile challenge to raise money for families affected by autism – explained that the investment represents Qualcomm’s second investment in Cubic.

“Our goal is to become the single source provider for smart mobile connectivity for the OEM computer manufacturers who want to take all the hassle of connecting to voice and data networks out of their devices.”

He said Cubic is embarking on product development projects for three out of the five top computer OEMs in the world.

“We serve both the telecoms providers and the OEMs by putting in core network architecture and real-time billing engines via a software layer. We can create any type of billing solution on any device for any carrier. This is effectively software-defined networking and everything can be changed on a device or an app over the air.”

Napier is also chairman of BPI Telecom, one of the top 300 companies in Ireland with revenues in excess of €137m.

“We are excited to be investing in a company so well positioned for rapid growth based on their highly innovative network and strong go-to-market relationships with leading smart device manufacturers looking to embed Cubic Telecom’s low-cost data connectivity technology into existing and future products,” said John Flynn, managing partner at ACT Ventures.

Globally licensed carrier that serves carriers and OEMs

Cubic Telecom has its origins in Cork and was started in 2005 by entrepreneur Pat Phelan, who has since left to lead e-commerce security player Trustev.

In 2010, Cubic Telecom became a GSMA-licensed carrier in its own right and has partnerships in place with major operators, including Vodafone, Digicel and Sprint, to name a few.

Napier explained: “The ultimate objective is that when a consumer buys a device – be it a tablet or a smartphone – there is no messing, they can get connected straight away. This also allows major media brands to deliver apps that provide consumers with connectivity and messaging as part of licensing deals with carriers.

“Traditionally, carriers looked at the SIM card as a connection device – we’ve flipped that and turned the SIM card into its own operating system that can include a mobile wallet. The end game is a simple model that allows users to pay, connect and go. If you fly into China we will already have a relationship with operators there so you don’t have to worry about changing settings on your device.

“The reality is that the hardware devices are changing faster than the network’s capability. We keep the core technology fresh and relevant and by connecting to their RAN (radio access network), as a white label we get things done. At no stage will you see our branding on the side of a Formula One car, instead we will align with an operator, a device maker or a content provider and allow them to better serve their customers,” Napier said.

Welcoming the announcement, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton, TD, said:  “With this announcement by Cubic Telecom of a successful funding round and new jobs we are once again seeing a great example of the strength of Ireland’s indigenous ICT sector. The Government’s Action Plan for Jobs specifically targets the ICT sector, which has already added a total of more than 11,000 jobs since this Government took office. I am determined to ensure that, with the right supports from Government, companies like this can continue to start up, grow and create the jobs we need.”

Also commenting on the investment, Imran Karim, head of investments at TPS, said: “TPS is impressed with the capability of the Cubic Telecom Platform, with more than 340 APIs, which will give OEMs real-time data on customer consumption with no minimum monthly contracts.

“The traction Cubic Telecom has made internationally with both mobile operators and OEMs firmly underpins the need for this service in market. To have investors like Qualcomm Incorporated, Enterprise Ireland and ACT highlighted that this is a company which is serious in their space,” Karim said.

Wireless signal image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy
By John Kennedy

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years. His interests include all things technological, music, movies, reading, history, gaming and losing the occasional game of poker.

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