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Further funding flung at Fring

Only another $10m or so

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VoIP upstart Fring has raised another block of cash from its backers, despite lacking a business model or even a business as such.

The company won't say how much, but told us it was comparable with the last round which saw around $10m flow into the company's coffers in August 2007. The company spent that money improving its messaging and VoIP client, which it gives away in the interests of gaining market share while struggling to find a way of making it pay.

Fring users are part of the Fring network, but their loyalty is to Skype, MSN, Yahoo, Google Talk and so forth. Fring provides a nice interface to access those (and other) services, but draws no revenue from them; while there might be money to be made as an identity aggregator it's not something anyone has ever managed before.

Apparently this latest infusion of cash will enable the company to support more platforms - which means Android, as the client already runs on just about everything else. But with the only source of revenue being investors' cash it's hard to see where Fring is going, or why the VCs continue to pour money into it; we can only assume they know something we don't, or just don't want to look stupid for investing the last lot. ®

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

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