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Marlin Equity buys mobile internet businesses from Openwave

17 Apr 2012

Marlin Equity Partners has bought the mediation and messaging product business of Openwave systems, the company which claims to have invented the mobile internet.

The firm plans to rename the businesses Openwave Mobility and Openwave Messaging following the transaction, which is expected to be completed later this month.

Analysts believe the sale could raise between $60m and $120m.

Openwave’s remaining business will be renamed Unwired Planet and will focus on intellectual property.

The company has built a portfolio of approximately 200 patents covering innovations spanning smart devices, cloud technologies and unified messaging.

Marlin Equity partner Nick Kaiser said, “This transaction gives us the opportunity to create two leading software companies focused on providing carrier-grade solutions in the mobility and messaging segments.

“We plan to make the necessary investments in both businesses to continue to deliver market-leading software to Openwave’s global customer base.

“We look forward to partnering with Openwave’s talented employees and executives to deliver solutions that maximize the value of an operator’s network assets.”

Turnaround specialist Marlin closed its third fund in September 2009 on $650m, a total of $200m over its original target.

The California-based firm has more than $1bn of assets under management, and focuses investments on businesses undergoing operational, financial or market-driven changes.

It has made more than 50 acquisitions through its funds and related companies.

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