Investments

Symphony Communication Looking To Raise Around $100 Million

Symphony Communication Services, an instant messaging startup backed by Wall Street, is reportedly in initial discussions with investors to raise around $100 million in new funding, reported The Wall Street Journal.

According to the report, Symphony Communication Services is in talks with Temasek Holdings and GIC. It’s also holding discussions with General Atlantic, which is based in the U.S. WSJ cited people familiar with the matter. Some of the company’s existing investors may take part in the round of funding. The report noted that, roughly a year ago, Symphony raised around $100 million from investors, including Alphabet Inc.’s Google unit. The round in 2015 valued the company at $650 million, the paper reported.

“We are well-funded for our operations and future growth,” said Symphony spokeswoman Samantha Singh in the report.

Symphony, with the backing of Goldman Sachs Group and money managers, including BlackRock, has not been widely adopted by the companies that helped start the firm at the end of 2014, in part because the profits of financial services firms have been hurt by low interest rates, lackluster markets and new increased regulation. In order for the company to be successful, WSJ reported it needs to find a place on the computer screens of traders, which are already crowded with other service providers. BlackRock is helping, announcing in June it moved its internal messaging to the Symphony service and has since begun encouraging its banks and brokers to communicate with them. Symphony executives don’t see it as a competitor to Bloomberg’s messaging function, but the report noted Wall Street is backing the company partly because it took aim at one the features that keeps their employees using the Bloomberg terminal. Symphony’s messaging service is a platform in which users can access data, analytics, news and other sources of information.

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