Vodafone chooses Valis to supply location-based community services

Cellular giant will be launching enhanced services in Europe based on the startup's platform
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Tel Aviv-based Valis won a contract to provide the world's leading mobile services provider Vodafone (NYSE, LSE:VOD) with tools to build location-based community services.

The deal is expected to generate Valis millions of dollars in revenue over the coming three to four years, TheMarker.com has learned.

Valis declined to comment.

Valis' technology enables mobile phone companies to offer subscribers location-based content and community services. London-based Vodafone provides cellular communications services to 95 million subscribers in 28 countries. In the months to come it will be launching new enhanced services based on Valis' technology in several European countries.

The company's key product, cellmaZe, a "cellular teen channel" - is a community location-based and messaging platform for teenagers. The cellmaZe channel includes Instant Locator, Instant Messenger, privacy management, chat, dating and games, the company says.

Valis is meanwhile installing its systems with six Spanish, German and Russian mobile carriers.

In July this year the company had its first commercial launch at Swisscom Mobile, which has 3.5 million subscribers. Within five months some 30,000 subscribers had registered for the tracking services, chats, and forums.

Valis was founded in December 1999 by CEO Ariel Napchi, CTO Ronny Golan, and Chief Content Officer Oded Napchi.

In February this year it closed its second round of financing, securing $7 million from Pitango Venture Capital (formerly Polaris) and AOL-Time Warner (NYSE:AOL).

In January 2000 the company secured $1.4 million seed capital from Millennium Capital Venture. It employs 30 people at offices in Tel Aviv.