Kumu raises $15M, plans field trial with U.S. carrier

Silicon Valley startup Kumu Networks, which claims its self-interference solution can double network capacity, nailed down $15 million in Series B funding.

The round was led by Third Point Ventures. Also joining the round were previous investors New Enterprise Associates and Khosla Ventures, which participated in Kumu's $10 million in Series A funding round during December 2012.

Kumu said the additional funding will be used to further development of its technology, which it calls full duplex wireless, as well as to support major carrier trials. Sachin Katti, the company's CEO and an assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science at Stanford University, told Bloomberg that Kumu is planning field trials starting in 2014 with three operators, including one in the United States.

The 18-employee company also said its technology is being considered for use in 5G networks and high-efficiency Wi-Fi standards.

Katti indicated that Kumu would like to follow Qualcomm's (NASDAQ:QCOM) business model, by developing technology it can license to device and network equipment vendors, with late 2015 being the target date to begin booking revenues.

Joel Brand, Kumu's vice president of product management, told Venture Beat that the startup did not need to raise the Series B funding at this time but decided to anyway because "there was a lot of inbound interest from a lot of strategic partners." Kumu opted to raise money from financial investors instead of committing to a specific partner so it could maintain neutrality when it comes to future partnerships, he said.

For more:
- see this Kumu release
- see this Bloomberg article
- see this Venture Beat article

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