Independent app store GetJar has raised $25 million in Series C funding from Tiger Global Management, a tech-focused hedge fund led by Chase Coleman.
GetJar will use the money to attract more companies that publish apps for the Android operating system in an effort to become an open-platform alternative to Google’s Android Market. GetJar sells apps for several different smartphone platforms, including, iOS, BlackBerry, Android, Windows Mobile and Symbian.
“GetJar plans to aggressively expand its offering to Android publishers in order to secure its position as the premier “open” Android Market alternative while continuing to support other smartphone platforms such as Blackberry and IO,” the company said in a statement.
In the past year, GetJar has landed partnerships several notable players in the wireless industry, including Sprint, AT&T, Zynga, Glu Mobile and Rovio, the developer of Angry Birds. More than 1.5 billion apps have been downloaded from GetJar to date, and the company’s inventory includes more than 75,000 apps for customers in more than 200 countries.
Lee Fixel, managing director at Tiger Global Management, said the hedge fund was “highly impressed” with GetJar’s executive team and said he was “very excited to see what GetJar will do next with our investment during this tremendous growth period.”
GetJar’s current investor, Accel Partners, also participated in the funding round. Accel led GetJar’s $11 million series B funding round in June of last year.
Hedge funds like Accel Partners and Tiger Global Management have been attracted by the tech sector’s rapid growth, especially in the wireless market. Gartner predicts that sales from app stores like GetJar, Android Market and Apple’s App Store will hit $15 billion this year, nearly triple the amount of revenue they brought in during 2010.