Cyanogen finds $80m in collecting tin after busking session

Generous benefactors queue up to put cash down

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Android 5.0 "Lollipop"

Bloatware-free Android version Cyanogen has some powerful friends. The company has passed around the investors' collecting tin and come up with $80m.

Those friends are Twitter Ventures, Qualcomm, Telefónica Ventures, Indonesian telco Smartfren Telecom, Index Ventures, Access Industries (the US-based industrial group headed by Len Blavatnik), Rupert Murdoch, Israeli and American venture capitalist Vivi Nevo, and several yet-to-be-announced partners.

Existing investors Benchmark, Andreessen Horowitz, Redpoint Ventures and Tencent Holdings also participated in fundraising led by Premji Invest.

Cyanogen is now distancing itself from core Android: "We're committed to creating an open computing platform that fundamentally empowers the entire mobile ecosystem, from developers to hardware makers and most importantly, consumers around the world," said Kirt McMaster, CEO of Cyanogen.

"We invested in Cyanogen because we're big proponents of what it's doing in opening up Android and supporting global and local ecosystem players," said Sandesh Patnam, technology sector lead of Premji Invest.

The company will use the funding to recruit more developers and help build the alternative Android ecosystem. ®

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