Jana secures $57m in funding to expand free-Internet-through-sponsored-content solution into emerging markets


Jana, the mobile company that provides free Internet access in emerging markets through sponsored content, recently announced a $57m Series C round of funding, led by Verizon Ventures, with participation from existing investors Spark Capital and Publicis Groupe. The deal helps Jana accelerate its expansion into emerging markets, addressing a growing demand for free Internet globally.

Jana provides Internet access that is free for the end-user


Source: jana.com

The company also announced that AOL CEO, Tim Armstrong, agreed to serve on the company’s advisory board. Maurice Levy, CEO of Publicis, joins as an additional advisor.

Tim Armstrong, CEO of AOL, says:

In this undated photo provided by Google Inc., of then Google Americas Operations President Tim Armstrong. Armstrong is becoming the latest CEO of AOL, raising hopes that he will be able to turn around Time Warner Inc.'s struggling Internet unit, it was announced Thursday, March 12, 2009. (AP Photo/Google, ho)** NO SALES **

“I’m excited that Verizon Ventures has invested in a company that is seeking to transform access to the internet. By 2020, more than 5bn people will be mobile, and new, engaging ways to access data will become increasingly important worldwide.”

Jana has been successful in emerging markets such as India, Indonesia and Brazil. Now, the company plans to launch in China with its mCent app, that unlocks free data in exchange for brand engagement.

The company is the second largest mobile ad platform in India, behind Google, with twice the reach of users than Free Basics. It surpassed Facebook growth revenue in nine months after the launch of mCent in the country. Jana drives engagement for over 3,000 brands, including Amazon, Twitter and WeChat, and has established partnerships with 311 mobile carriers, connecting to 4.56bn smartphones worldwide.

Nathan Eagle, CEO, Jana, adds:

nathan eagle

“Over 30m users have benefited from Jana’s free, unrestricted internet access, but our goal is to reach the next billion. With Verizon’s support and Tim Armstrong as an advisor, we look forward to continuing record-breaking growth in emerging markets and quick expansion into China.”