Palm gets a $100M shot in the arm from none other than Bono

Just when mobile device maker Palm could really use a lift, Elevation Partners -- a VC firm that includes U2 singer Bono -- is coming through with a $100 million investment.

With the launch of a new mobile platform and smartphone slated for next month's CES show, financially beleaguered Palm, Inc. has nailed down a highly needed $100 million equity investment from Elevation Partners, a venture capital firm that includes Bono, lead singer for the rock band U2.

"Palm has an industry-leading team and an exciting, differentiated product roadmap. We are proud to be associated with the company and look forward to great things from Palm in 2009 and beyond," contended Roger McNamee, co-founder of Elevation Partners, in a statement issued by Palm today.

"The additional capital from Elevation Partners will enable us to put added momentum behind the product introductions scheduled for 2009 and will provide us with enhanced stability in unsettled economic times," predicted Palm President and CEO Ed Colligan, in another statement.

As previously reported in BetaNews, Palm officials confirmed late last week that their product announcements for early 2009 will include a smartphone running on the company's forthcoming Linux-based Nova platform.

Palm will aim the Nova platform mainly at consumers, at least initially, Colligan said, in a conference call with financial analysts on Thursday. At the same time, the device maker will keep focusing on Microsoft's Windows Mobile as its enterprise platform.

The manufacturer of Centro and Treo smartphones had earlier sent out invitations to a CES press conference, promising "Palm New-Ness."

Palm has been facing intensifying competition on both sides of the mobile market, particularly with the introduction of Apple's 3G iPhone and the Android-based G1 smartphone over the past year.

The five partners in Elevation, a $1.9 billion private equity firm, include McNamee, also the co-founder of Silver Lake Partners and Integral Capital Partners; the U2 rock band's Bono; Fred Anderson, former EVP and CFO of Apple; Bret Pearlman, former senior managing director of The Blackstone Group; and Marc Bodnick, founding principal of Silver Lake Partners.

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