Seattle-based Telecom Transport Management has raised $6 million in venture capital to help wireless carriers save money as they roll out...
Seattle-based Telecom Transport Management has raised $6 million in venture capital to help wireless carriers save money as they roll out such advanced services as TV and music.
The company, which has been quietly working since its start in 2003, brings together a heavyweight team of investors and executives, primarily with roots from McCaw Cellular Communications, which later became AT&T Wireless and today is Cingular Wireless.
Investors in the company’s third round of capital include Ignition Partners, SeaPoint Ventures and Rally Capital. The company said Tuesday that it has raised $10 million to date.
The ties to McCaw Cellular and its founder Craig McCaw are numerous: TTM’s founder, president and chief executive, Mark Hamilton, worked at McCaw Cellular in 1984, serving as general counsel for part of his tenure before leaving in 1999; Steve Hooper, a partner at Ignition, is the former chief executive at AT&T Wireless; and Rally Capital Managing Partner Dennis Weibling was the former president of Craig McCaw’s Eagle River investment company.
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Weibling, who is joining the company’s board, started Rally Capital of Kirkland in March to invest in telecommunications companies. Hooper will become chairman, succeeding Tom Huseby of SeaPoint.
TTM provides backhaul services for mobile phone companies by using wireless microwave technology to send traffic from cell sites back to the switch, where the traffic is then rerouted.
Weibling said TTM has increasing opportunity as wireless carriers exhaust the bandwidth between the cell site and the switch by launching new data services. Carriers lease high-bandwidth connections, called T1 lines, from local telephone companies but soon that won’t be enough.
“They only have one person to go to, and that one person decides the price and the quality, and they have to take it,” Weibling said. “TTM will provide them with an alternative.”
Hamilton said TTM provides a less expensive service by using wireless, which does not have the costs associated with laying lines. Also, because carriers often share cell sites, TTM can sell the bandwidth to more than one carrier to distribute the costs over a few customers.
If the use of high-bandwidth wireless applications — such as TV and music — rises, carriers will scramble to add T1 lines at hundreds of dollars each a month.
The company, which has nine employees, expects to use the money to roll out its services and equipment commercially.
Tricia Duryee: 206-464-3283 or firstname.lastname@example.org