Motricity Sells PocketGear Business to Its Own Co-Founder

Jud Bowman, a co-founder of Motricity, announced today that he has acquired the smartphone applications business from Motricity, which includes PocketGear and the former PalmGear and websites. Bowman along with venture capital firms Noro-Moseley Partners and Wakefield Group are financing the deal and the creation of a new venture around the businesses called PocketGear.

PocketGear claims a network of more than 30,000 developers and 50,000 mobile applications. PocketGear powers smartphone application distribution for direct channels including and storefronts for its partners including Palm, Sony Ericsson, Sprint, T-Online, and AOL.

Prior to being named chief technology officer for Motricity, Bowman was co-founder and chief executive officer of Pinpoint Networks, which merged with PowerByHand in 2004 to form Motricity. Bowman was instrumental in leading the integration of PowerByHand and Pinpoint Networks and in raising $400 million of venture capital and growing Motricity to more than $100 million in annual revenues and 500 employees globally.

In March of this year, Motricity announced a significant reduction in its workforce and a shift in corporate strategy. The company has also made public its intention to discontinue "non-profitable and non-core businesses" including the planned divestiture of

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. In conjunction with the closing of the transaction, Bowman has resigned his position on the Motricity board of directors.

"The divestiture of our smartphone and direct-to-consumer businesses supports Motricity's commitment to continue to strengthen our focus on our core business of providing mobile content infrastructure and services for the leading global mobile operators," said Ryan Wuerch, chairman and chief executive officer of Motricity. "The direct-to-consumer business was part of the foundation of Motricity and has strong potential for continued growth. However, it is no longer aligned with the strategic focus of the company.

"This transaction will enable many of the same employees that have worked with this part of Motricity for years to continue to operate the business. Jud played such an integral role in Motricity's success and I'm confident he'll have the same success with PocketGear," Wuerch added.

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gmayhak @ 6/5/2008 2:17:37 AM # Q
I really hope Mr. Bowman will allow access to the thousands of Shareware and freeware programs that weren't 'migrated' to PocketGear and are still sitting there on the PalmGear legacy site but can only be accessed by the developers. They represent a part of the SmartPhone/PDA history and it's a damn shame they're being lost because someone can't make a buck off of them.


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Who cares?

cstamper @ 6/5/2008 11:05:11 AM # Q
Does anyone even use pocketgear? It all ended with the palmgear merge... :-(

I make most my sales @ nowadays, so I hardly care about whatever happens 'over there'.

RE: Who cares?
Dera @ 6/5/2008 11:44:07 AM # Q
It would be a big positive to the PalmOS community to have these freeware and shareware apps available again. Many times, freeware and shareware give people a "taste", and then they go on to purchase commercial software. Also, there are a lot of apps in the freeware and shareware categories that have never turned into commercial apps, so the loss of these is a huge asset loss for the PalmOS user.

RE: Who cares?
dkirker @ 6/5/2008 3:35:37 PM # Q
cstamper, then you are using Motricity. The Palm Software Connection uses Motricity (the Pocket Gear people) to deal with sales.

RE: Who cares?
cstamper @ 6/6/2008 12:26:45 PM # Q
dkirker: You're right. But the report tools let me see which storefront sells most. And most sales are from the PalmOne Software Connection store, hardly any from PocketGear.

So Motricity is top-level and PocketGear & SWC are just stores.

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