Blyk Gets New Funding Round, Expanding To Netherlands

Ad-funded free MVNO Blyk has scored an undisclosed investment from Goldman Sachs and Industrial and Financial Investments Company (IFIC), and will make the Netherlands its second territory in the second half of ’08. Existing investors in the outfit, which gives free calls and texts to customers aged 16 to 24 in return for sending them SMS and MMS ads, were Sofinnova Partners plus private investors. Founded by ex Nokia (NYSE: NOK) president Pekka Ala-Pietilä and Antti Ohrling, Blyk launched in the UK in September. It’s now planning to go to Holland, which it says is a “key target market for those brands with international campaigns”, and will use Vodafone’s (NYSE: VOD) network backbone. Other European markets are “to follow”.