Fisher Invests $1.5 Million in its Hyperlocal Partner

DataSphere helped broadcaster launch neighborhood Web sites

SEATTLE: Fisher Communications has invested $1.5 million in the company that helped launch its hyperlocal initiative, DataSphere Technologies of Bellevue, Wash.

Fisher’s investment was part of a $10.8 million Series B preferred stock financing round for DataSphere, a software-as-a-service technology and hyperlocal ad sales company focused on generating online profits for media companies. In conjunction with Fisher’s minority stake, its president and CEO, Colleen Brown, joined the DataSphere board of directors. The funding round was announced about a month ago, though participants weren’t announced at the time aside from one previous investor--Ignition Partners.

Fisher has partnered with DataSphere to launch over 100 hyperlocal neighborhood sites in Seattle, Washington; Portland and Eugene, Ore.; Bakersfield, Calif.; and Boise, Idaho. In collaboration with Fisher, DataSphere also distributes the technology and sales solutions to other broadcasters looking to establish hyperlocal sites. Fisher recently said it has attracted more than 1,000 advertisers to its neighborhood sites. -- Deborah D. McAdams

January 26, 2010: “Fisher Captures 1,000 Advertisers with Hyperlocal Strategy”
Fisher Communications says its hyperlocal neighborhood sites have now attracted more than 1,000 advertisers to more than 100 neighborhood sites. The broadcaster launched the initiative last August with 43 Web sites focused on distinct Seattle neighborhoods .