AT&T announced yesterday that it was joining a venture capital consortium, which is looking to fund Southern Californian start-ups involved in wireless application development. The consortium also includes: Hollywood entertainment company, William Morris Agency (WMA) and Silicon Valley venture capital firms Accel Partners and Venrock.
According to the group Accel, William Morris Agency and Venrock will form a joint fund that will focus on discovering, funding and building small companies focused on innovation in the consumer media technology arena; AT&T will participate in selected investment opportunities with the joint fund as a “limited participant.” Investor Richard Wolpert, who has previously served as president of Disney Online and chief strategy officer of RealNetworks, will manage the joint fund.
The group called AT&T, “a long-standing source of meaningful innovation,” saying that the telecom brings to the group “extensive experience in research and development, global brand and product marketing and expertise in scaling new products and services.”
Susan Johnson, senior vice president of Business Development for AT&T, said in a statement: “AT&T is focused on driving innovation…We are excited about working with this venture to accelerate the pace of innovation so that consumers can benefit from next-generation services and capabilities.”