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Mobile Streams, which provides entertainment content for mobile phones, is planning an Aim listing by the end of March after John Malone’s Liberty Media took a 22 per cent stake on Monday.
Liberty’s investment, worth more than £5m, implies a valuation of about £27m for the seven-year-old company. Mobile Streams said it intended to raise about £6m through a placing by Bridgewell Securities, the vast majority of which will be new shares as its current investors are likely to sell only small stakes.
As part of the alliance with Liberty, a US-based cable and media investment group, Mobile Streams will also take over the management of ConnectID, a subsidiary of Liberty’s wireless technology division, True Position. The business specialises in using the ability to pinpoint the location of a cellphone to allow parents to track their children or to offer “location aware content” such as directions or advice about local services.
Mobile Streams, which works with media content owners and mobile network operators, would invest the funds raised by the placing in developing more of its own content, said Roger Parry, who became its chairman last year.
The group, which makes more than 40 per cent of its revenues from outside the UK, is hoping to use the Liberty alliance to expand more rapidly in the US market.
Industry analysts have estimated that mobile entertainment may be worth $31.7bn (£17.9bn) by 2009 as more third generation handsets come on to the market.
There is still considerable debate, however, over who exactly will make the most money from such services – the content owners, mobile operators or the middlemen.
■ Vodafone and Sony NetServices have joined forces to launch a radio service for mobile phones in the UK and five other European countries. Vodafone Radio DJ will offer radio channels based on mood and genre, or allow listeners to customise the playlist, for a monthly fee of €10-€15 or a daily fee of €1.49-€2.