The latest influx of cash enables Cyanogen Inc. to double in size, with a new Chinese office in the works.
Android custom ROM maker Cyanogen Inc. announced today that it raised $22 million in Series B funding. The organization managed to raise $7 million in the first round of funding that occurred three months ago.
The money will be utilized by Cyanogen in establishing a new office in Shenzhen, China. Over 50 team members will be hired over the next several months as Cyanogen gets ready to launch its first handset. Cyanogen is working with Chinese handset vendor Oppo in launching a mobile that comes with a customized version of CyanogenMod by default.
Cyanogen is also targeting mainstream availability of its ROM, CyanogenMod. The CyanogenMod is one of the most widely used ROMs, but until now its use has been limited to tech-savvy users who were well-versed in the intricacies involved in flashing a ROM through a utility like ClockWorkMod. Cyanogen has launched an installer version of CyanogenMod, called CyanogenMod Installer, last month in an effort to make it easier for a wider swathe of audience to install the CyanogenMod.
However, it ran into issues with Google, and was subsequently asked to delist the CyanogenMod Installer from the Play Store. Cyanogen now offers the utility directly on its website, where it has instructions on how to sideload it onto an Android device. Cyanogen CEO Kirt McMaster has mentioned that work is underway in getting the CyanogenMod Installer reinstated on the Play Store.
It has been heavily hinted that ex-Oppo Vice President Pete Lau is turning to Cyanogen for assistance with the software side of things with the OnePlus initiative.
Other organizations also seem interested in Cyanogen, with Tencent, China’s biggest Internet firm, being involved in the latest round of funding along with Andreessen Horowitz. Tencent’s interest in Cyanogen might come from the fact that most CyanogenMod users come from China. It could be looking to strengthen CyanogenMod’s position in the country by offering software utilities tailored for Chinese users. Most Google services do not work in China, so it makes sense for Cyanogen to collaborate with Tencent in bringing relevant software utilities to users in the region.
Source: CyanogenMod Blog