By Allan Maurer
WASHINGTON, DC – Last year we missed Leonard Cohen in a concert because we simply got busy with other things and forgot about his appearance here until it was too late. If we had been using Hitfix, that wouldn’t have happened. The company’s entertainment and sports calendar keeps users posted on everything going on in the music, sports, TV, movie and entertainment world.
Founded in 2008 by veterans of the online entertainment industry, DC-based Hitfix offers news—not gossip—about everything from the latest video game releases to the newest movie trailers and TV listings.
But what differentiates it from other online entertainment sites is its event forecast calendar. You don’t even have to register or sign up for anything to use it. It automatically provides information based on where you are located.
Jennifer Sargent, CEO and co-founder of the company tells us she and co-founder and editor Greg Ellwood saw a gap in the market for a breaking entertainment news site that would bridge the gap between gossip sites such as Perez Hilton and trade journals such as Variety.
“We also saw a gap on the calendar side of things,” Sargent says. “Being an entertainment fan takes some planning.” You need to know when tickets go on sale for an event, when a favorite video game will be released, when your TV shows are on, even if you’re only setting your DVR.
In addition to the Hitfix Web site, already one of our favorite destinations, the company released its iPhone app four weeks ago. “We’re getting a lot of good feedback on that,” says Sargent.
The site has about 600,000 unique users monthly and about 800,000 visits. The company currently earns its revenue from advertising. A recent study estimates that a site with about 700,000 monthly visitors will make about $75,000 a month from ad revenue.
Hitfix raised a $1 million seed capital round from a New York-based angel group in 2008. The eight-person company is seeking a $1.5 million investment and is one of 60 innovative companies selected to present at the Southeast Venture Conference at the Ritz Carleton in Tysons Corner, VA, Feb. 24-25. (See: www.seventure.org for more information).
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