TargetSpot, Largest Online Radio Ad Network, Raises $8 Million

-- Online radio ad provider Targetspot has raised $8 million from Union Square Ventures, Bain Capital Ventures, CBS Radio and Milestone Venture Partners. The company boasts the largest digital audio advertising network. Advertisers can use the service to deliver targeted audio ads, display and pre-roll video ads. The New York-based company has over 70 distribution partners including CBS Radio, AOL Radio, Entercom, Live365 and Yahoo! Music.

"The funding will help us accelerate TargetSpot's growth trajectory by expanding our advertising product lineup on both the web and mobile platforms," Union Square Ventures' Fred Wilson said in a statement.

The company is filling a need for audio ads in Internet radio. "We perceive there to be a gap in the marketplace," CEO Eyal Goldwerger told Billboard last year. "The audio piece is missing." Google and Apple have made investments in mobile ad displays through their acquisitions of AdMob and Quattro Wireless, respectively. But with advertising such a key component to monetizing Internet radio, and with some doubts about the effectiveness of display ads in Internet radio, some services may prefer an ad platform like Targetspot to insert audio ads between songs.

Tagetspot has been on a solid growth trajectory over the last few years. The company had previously raised $8.6 million back in March 2008 from the same investors involved in this latest $8 million round of funding.

Also in 2008, TargetSpot acquired Ronning Lipset Radio, a leading third-party online radio ad representation firm, and its six million weekly listeners. Union Square, CBS Radio and Oddcast Inc. invested an undisclosed amount in 2007. http://www.cbscorporation.com/news-article.php?id=270

( Press release)

The Future is Now: Flying Lotus' Webcam-based Bonus Material Technology
-- Musician Flying Lotus and Warp Records have come up with a clever way to give bonus, digital material to buyers of the artist's latest album, "Cosmogramma." Using a webcam application called Trigger, owners hold up to their webcam either the CD, the LP or the iTunes PDF booklet. When the application identifies the products, the owner unlocks access to alternative takes of the album's songs. (Flying-Lotus.com, via Pitchfork)

Ubisoft's 'Just Dance' Video Games Sells Over 10 Million Worldwide
-- Ubisoft's "Just Dance 2" video game has sold over 5 million units worldwide since its release in October 2010. The title is now the third-best selling title on the Wii platform. These sales bring the total for the "Just Dance" franchise, which also includes "Just Dance" and "Just Dance Kids," to more than 10 million units worldwide. ( Press release)