AroundAmbler.com, along with its sister site MoreThanTheCurve.com, are now part of a new media company, Burb Media. AroundAmbler.com moved to its new platform last night (please go take a look around and tell us what you think). We have a great investor/partner (learn about him below), who has really embraced the idea behind the websites and has a vision on how to grow the business of hyper-local news.
It is very exciting and we look forward to MoreThanTheCurve.com and AroundAmbler.com becoming indispensable sources of information in their communities. Below is a press release with details on the new company:
MoreThanTheCurve and AroundAmbler Merge to Form Burb Media
Well Known Entrepreneur Mike Golden Invests in Company
(Ambler, PA) – Hyper-local news websites MoreThanTheCurve.com and AroundAmbler.com are now part of a new media company, Burb Media, LLC. Burb Media is a partnership between Kevin Tierney, the publisher and founder of both websites, and Michael Golden, the founder of ShopRunner.com and co-founder of GSI Commerce.
“I am thrilled to partner with Kevin Tierney and invest in the new parent company of MoreThanTheCurve.com and AroundAmbler.com, Burb Media” said Golden. “I believe Burb Media will provide an essential component in the fabric of the Conshohocken, Ambler and other communities by building a great business and bringing together neighborhood readers and local merchants, restaurateurs and service providers.”
“People have a huge appetite for local news, but the shrinking news rooms at the major media companies have resulted in little or no coverage of what is happening in the boroughs and townships,” said Tierney. “We want to inform, engage, drive the conversation, and offer easy access to information and services in each community. Michael Golden has a proven background in growing successful businesses and it is exciting to have his enthusiasm and vision guiding the business forward.”
The current websites have focused on local news coverage and events, but will now grow into central hubs for each community. Beyond local news, the sites will offer a one-stop shop for events (calendar, ticket sales, galleries), local guides and directories, online food ordering and delivery, real estate listings, people and business profiles, etc.
Recognizing that past efforts to grow hyper-local media have failed, Golden and Tierney believe the time is now right for building a local news, information and community engagement platform. Golden views it as analogous to the decade long discussion of TV and Internet convergence. “We all knew that the Internet would become part of the television experience, then it just seemed like it never would,” stated Golden. “Today I can easily watch Netflix over my Xfinity connection. My TV is Smart. Convergence is here but it has been anti-climactic. The tale of local digital media has been similar. After many false starts, the time for hyper-local digital news is now.”
“Websites such as MoreThanTheCurve.com and AroundAmbler.com, often run by one to three people with authentic ties to the community, have emerged and are rapidly eclipsing the remnants of the local newspaper industry in their towns in terms of relevancy, engagement and reach,” shared Golden. “I am personally a huge believer in this trend and think these small businesses will rapidly become the de-facto source of critical information in their communities.”
Managing AroundAmbler.com is Ben Bergman. Bergman is known locally for his role managing the Ambler Farmers’ Market and in the creation and management of the Beer Garden at Ambler Yards. He can be contacted at Ben@BurbMedia.com.