Media Business News and Trends

Google announced the purchase of content aggregation site Metaweb, giving the search giant access to the company's "database of things." Metaweb operates Freebase, a database of more than 12 million entries, with the goal being to provide more and richer information on a query topic than would keywords.

Posted Jul 20, 2010

Squarespace, a web publishing platform, announced the closure of a $38.5 million minority growth investment, led by Index Ventures and Accel Partners. According to the company, this is the first outside capital raised by the company since its foundation in 2003.

Posted Jul 15, 2010

The Association of Electronics, Information Technology and Telecommunications of Spain (AETIC) formed a new initiative on digital content in the interest of improving the Spanish economy's effectiveness in that area and improve collaboration with other areas of industry. The AETIC's new designation comprises nine subsections that totaled €9.2 billion (about $11.5 billion) in production in 2009, or 0.9% of the Spanish GDP.

Posted Jul 13, 2010

The Broadband Commission for Digital Development, an organization that includes U.N. agencies, industry voices, and government leaders, released a plan to develop the world's broadband networks. The commission, which is co-chaired by Paul Kagame, president of Rwanda, and Mexican media magnate Carlos Slim, will deliver its findings to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in New York on Sept. 19.

Posted Jul 13, 2010

Content delivery company Highwinds announced that it has acquired BandCon, a Costa Mesa, Calif.-based internet infrastructure service provider. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Posted Jul 13, 2010

Cengage Learning announced that it will consolidate its business units into one operating group. The company's Academic and Professional Group (APG) will be placed under one umbrella with library and reference division Gale, as well as the company's international operations.

Posted Jul 13, 2010

Blackboard Inc. entered into an agreement to acquire learning and collaboration technology providers Elluminiate Inc. and Wimba Inc. Elluminate and Wimba, which serve 2,600 educational institutions between them, between them, were purchased for the combined price of $116 million in cash.

Posted Jul 13, 2010

Infogroup, a provider of resources for targeted sales and marketing solutions, announced its acquisition by affiliates of CCMP Capital Advisors, LLC, along with a new executive leadership team and Board of Directors. Clare Hart, who most recently served as president of the Dow Enterprise Media Group, has been named Infogroup's president and CEO. Rich Zannino, CCMP's Managing Director, will serve as the chairman of Infogroup's new Board of Directors.

Posted Jul 08, 2010

Creator of the "Twitter newspaper site" Paper.li announced the closing of a round of financing, featuring participation from German tech group Econa, as well as Kima Ventures, and Venture Incubator AG. A number of independent "angel" investors also participated in the round.

Posted Jul 08, 2010

Being the owner of two of the most important e-readers on the market puts me in a unique position to speak to the best and the worst of what e-readers have to offer. In my view, the Kindle - iPad comparisons I have read are usually based on a rather arrogant assumption: that reading books is, somehow, a more worthwhile intellectual pursuit than magazines, newspapers, or other content sources.

Posted Jul 08, 2010

Local group shopping site LivingSocial announced that it is beginning to expand LivingSocial Deals to an international audience with the opening of its London office and, in the near future, support for the service throughout London's major metropolitan areas. The move was prompted in part by the $44 million in venture funding the company has accumulated this year.

Posted Jul 01, 2010

LibreDigital, Inc., a provider of digital marketing and distribution technology for publishers, announced that it has acquired the Symtio e-commerce platform from HarperCollins's Zondervan. Launched as a division of Zondervan in 2008, Symtio is a multi-channel digital media platform that lets customers purchase digital media online or through an in-store retail card program.

Posted Jul 01, 2010

SDL announced the acquisition of Xopus, a developer of online XML editing products. The acquisition was carried out by SDL's Structured Content Technologies division and, according to the company, is meant to address the growing trend of structured authoring tools by technical writers.

Posted Jul 01, 2010

Locational social networking service Foursquare announced the completion of a round of Series B funding that netted the company $20 million, thanks to participation from Union Square Ventures, O'Reilly AlphaTech Ventures, and new partner Andreessen Horowitz.

Posted Jul 01, 2010

Spark Capital and Foundry Group led a Series A funding round that contributed $4.2 million to real-time media buying company Triggit. Under the terms of the agreement, Foundry Group managing partner Seth Levine and Spark Capital general partner Santo Politi will be joining the board of Triggit.

Posted Jun 29, 2010

A merger agreement between EDGAR Online, Inc., and UBmatrix, Inc. resulted in the creation of a global end-to-end provider of solutions for the creation, validation and analysis of extensible business reporting language (XBRL) content. Under the terms of the merger, UBmatrix will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of EDGAR Online.

Posted Jun 29, 2010

SAS, a provider of business analytics software and services, has acquired Memex. Memex offers intelligence management solutions that help improve intelligence processes, enhance public safety, and prevent and deter crime, terrorism, and other threats.

Posted Jun 24, 2010

Lijit Networks, a provider of search and discovery tools for online publishers, announced it has closed a $6,000,000 financing round led by Foundry Group. Also participating were Boulder Ventures and Colorado Fund I, managed by High Country Venture. The new investment brings the total venture capital investment in the company since its launch in 2006 to $17,000,000.

Posted Jun 24, 2010

Online newspaper The Huffington Post announced its first corporate acquisition, taking on Adaptive Semantics, the maker of JuLiA, a program that uses Bayesian algorithms to automatically moderate comments. For a publication as popular and community-oriented as The Huffington Post, the value of being able to automatically, simply, and effectively police its comment boards is considerable.

Posted Jun 22, 2010

The Association for Information and Dissemination Centers (ASIDIC) Board has expressed interest regarding a potential merger with the National Federation of Advanced Information Services (NFAIS), a sister organization founded in 1968 that shares many of the same members. The move follows an April recommendation by the ASIDIC Board of Directors that the organization be dissolved, and a subsequent proposal for merger from the NFAIS.

Posted Jun 15, 2010

Forbes Media announced that Investopedia, the company's financial education web site, is being offered for sale. The Edmonton-based firm was acquired by Forbes Media in 2007 and offers financial and investor education through a financial dictionary with over 9,000 terms used in personal finance, banking, and accounting.

Posted Jun 15, 2010

News Corp. announced the acquisition of Skiff, an electronic reading platform developed by the Hearst Corporation. Financial terms of the Skiff acquisition were not disclosed, but come on the heels of News Corp.'s continued moves towards monetizing its digital content. The company also announced a significant investment in Journalism Online.

Posted Jun 15, 2010

The French 3D and product lifecycle management (PLM) provider Dassault Systèmes (DS) announced the acquisition of Exalead, a provider of search platforms and search-based applications (SBA) for consumer and business users. The deal is worth approximately €135 million (about $161.8 million).

Posted Jun 10, 2010

Autonomy Corporation plc, a provider of infrastructure software, and CA Technologies have announced Autonomy's intention to acquire CA Technologies Information Governance business. Terms of the sale were not disclosed. CA Technologies Information Governance employees will join Autonomy.

Posted Jun 10, 2010

A new company, CityGrid Media, opened for business, replacing the former Citysearch, LLC. The newly-named company aims to provide local advertising organizations to web and mobile publishers through its CityGrid network. CityGrid aggregates more than 700,000 localized paying advertisers from sites like DexKnows.com, and reaches 140 million internet users through various connections.

Posted Jun 08, 2010

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