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Amazon Invests In Essential Phone

Amid the delays faced by the company’s first major product launch, Essential has secured $300 million in funding from Amazon, Tencent and others.

As reported by The Wall Street Journal, Essential President Niccolo De Masi says that the startup has global potential to be “a brand where there is an emotive connection for consumers,” and that international carrier relationships for the company’s Essential phone would be announced later this year.

“In the Western world there is a need for there to be a new lovemark,” said De Masi said.

Speaking to the recent delays for the company’s PH-1 smartphone, he insisted to investors that “we’re a few weeks away.”

“I will give you an exact date in a week,” he said.

According to De Masi, Essential’s initial strategy is to take advantage of the company’s small scale to innovate faster than larger vendors.

“If we are able to sell low single digit millions [in the first year] that’s very successful for a startup,” Mr. De Masi said.

The move to secure additional investors comes following a rough month for Essential, who missed their self-imposed launch date for their first product and lost a number of high-level executives.

In addition, the investment by Amazon and signalling by De Masi towards international expansion could suggest that Australian consumers could see the phone arrive here sooner than expected.

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