Broadcaster Invests in WiMax Outfit DigitalBridge

Schurz Communications will push provider’s wireless services
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ASHBURN, VA.: WiMax provider DigitalBridge Communications has secured a third round of equity financing from investors that include Schurz Communications, which has 10 TV stations in its portfolio of media properties. The amount of the current round was not disclosed. DigitalBridge previously raised $50 million in equity funding the National Rural Telecommunications Coop, Paladin Capital Group, CNF Investments and Novak Biddle Venture Partners, according to PeHub. All contributed to the latest round of funding with Schurz.

DigitalBridge specializes in providing broadband in rural areas. Schurz, based in Mishawaka, Ind., has two cable systems, 11 daily newspapers, the TV stations, 13 radio stations and 25 Web sites. The two companies together intend to bring affordable broadband into markets where Schurz operates.

“Joint commercial rollouts will be announced during 2010, with DigitalBridge engineering, constructing, and operating the broadband wireless networks and local Schurz teams promoting, selling, and supporting innovative product bundles,” the companies said in a joint release.

Todd Schurz, CEO of Schurz Communications said demand for broadband was increasing.

“Also, our newspapers and broadcast station brands already have millions of unique visitors, tens-of-millions of page views and deliver millions of online videos each month,” he said. “We anticipate further digital growth as more mobile devices access our content and services at 4G speeds. Schurz is uniquely positioned locally, as we already have significant sales and marketing forces in place to offer this first-of-its-kind partnership.”

DigitalBridge said it’s launched new wireless broadband service in 15 communities nationwide over the previous three years. The company, along with Clearwire Communications, recently leased 2 GHz spectrum from South Carolina’s Educational Television organization.

More on DigitalBridge:
November 18, 2009: “South Carolina Leases ETV Spectrum to Wireless Providers”
The state of South Carolina has leased its broadcast licenses to two wireless providers.