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AMMA leverages success of one start-up to raise $1.5 million for another

Friday, 21 December 2012 | By Michelle Hammond

Queensland-based firm AMMA Private Equity has launched a $1.5 million capital raising to fund a start-up that offers a voice and texting service to smartphone users who are out of credit.


AMMA, an Australian private equity firm founded in 2008, has become a leader in capital investment for start-ups. To date, it has invested a total of $48 million.


Major investments include online music download and streaming service Guvera, and environmental and technology company Pacific Environment Limited.


AMMA has now turned its attention to a start-up called Out of Credit Solutions (OOCS), which has created a platform called GoReverse.


GoReverse is the world’s first product or app that allows customers to send reverse charge text messages to anyone on any mobile phone network.


It also combines reverse charge text messages and reverse charge call capabilities in one place.


AMMA plans to leverage its success with Guvera to reassure investors about the global potential of GoReverse.


To date, AMMA has raised in excess of $34 million to fund the growth and development of Guvera. Just this week, Guvera launched its mobile app.


Meanwhile, AMMA chief executive Paul Jansz says GoReverse has already received support from the market.


“We have already launched an interim product called ViperText on the Google app store and Amazon to test the market,” he says.


“[We have] been very encouraged with the response from prepaid users who are sick of being left in the lurch when their phone runs out of credit.”


To date, 18,000 people have downloaded the ViperText app, which allows users to send texts when they have no credit.


ViperText, which is currently supported by carriers in Australia and the United Kingdom, will now be redesigned to offer free emergency texts.


According to AMMA, the potential market for GoReverse is significant, with virtually all prepaid users regularly encountering problems due to lack of credit.


The service is expected to be especially attractive to parents keen to keep tabs on their children, who can make calls if they are lost or find themselves in trouble.


According to AMMA head of capital Andy Nematalla, the firm’s strong relationships across a network of domestic and international investors will underpin the future success of OOCS.


“The AMMA team provides multi-stage capital raising and management expertise,” Nematalla says.


“[This] ensures our investors’ funds are invested prudently and with the goal of providing a later stage exit with a significant premium.


“We have developed particular expertise in technology-based companies which provide a clear value-add for the end consumer.


“There is an increasing number of these start-up opportunities in Australia and we look forward to assisting them in their growth plans.”