Zvents announced a big, new funding round ($24M) from Nokia Growth Partners, NAVTEQ (also Nokia-owned) and AT&T. That makes about $31M to date approximately. The company now has an impressive partner list, including Yellowpages.com, MTV, MSN and lots of newspapers.
The interesting question is: Where to now? Zvents clearly has aspirations beyond “events,” which the company defines very broadly. Here’s an indication from the language in the press release:
Zvents powers a unified international search index for the partner network, on which local consumers everywhere can perform “what, when, and where” searches for millions of events, businesses, performers, and other activities in their areas. This unique search technology platform aggregates data via web crawling and extraction, user- and merchant-generated content, and dozens of data partnerships; and provides localized search relevance and ranking to individual media partners.
Through its search service, Zvents creates for local businesses the opportunity to promote their locations online in ways that match their established media buying patterns. Events motivate consumers to engage with local businesses – a fact that local advertisers have utilized in print promotions for decades. The Zvents network is an enormous online distribution channel by which merchants can distribute these proven, effective marketing messages to engage local consumers. The Zvents network supports a paid listings model which enables merchant self-service, multiple local sales forces, and agencies to quickly and easily sell and syndicate local event and business listings.