Siemens Invests in IP Unity

Two years after initiating a reseller agreement with Siemens Information and Communications Networks Inc., IP Unity Corp. has scored a strategic investment from the German technology maker’s investment arm, Siemens Venture Capital.

The investment, just under $10 million, has been folded into the company’s Series D round of financing. The company’s venture capital funding now totals $70 million.

IP Unity, based in Milpitas, Calif., is a 4-year-old company that has developed a voice-over IP services platform. It provides voice and data applications – such as voice mail, messaging, audio and Web conferencing, included – over existing and next-generation communications networks. Siemens’ network technology division integrates IP Unity’s technology into its voice over-IP solutions for communications carriers and large enterprise network.

Now, with an equity relationship between them, Siemens will guide IP Unity in future product development, while IP Unity will have access to Siemens’ global sales and distribution channels, says Gerd Goette, an investment partner with Siemens Venture Capital in Munich.

Siemens’ investment will be used for working capital to sustain the company’s day-to-day operations, says Bob Swedroe, IP Unity’s vice president of finance. The company is not yet profitable, and Swedroe would not reveal when the company’s expects to break even.

Investors in IP Unity’s previous rounds of funding include Battery Ventures, Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein OM Technology Investments, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Multivest, New Enterprise Associates, Partech International and Sumitomo Corp. The company has no immediate plans to raise additional venture capital. IP Unity last raised $24 million in July 2001 at a post-money valuation of $83 million.