Jumpstart Gets $10 Mil. in Funding

NEW YORK Jumpstart Automotive Media said it closed a $10 million round of financing, which the San Francisco-based company plans to use to expand its ad network.

Alta Communications, a private equity firm in Boston, led the round, which marks the first outside funding for Jumpstart since it opened its doors in 2000.

Jumpstart acts as an advertising representative for automotive inventory on a variety of sites, including NADAguides, Vehix and J.D. Power Autos. It also sells auto ads that run on ValueClick, one of the Web’s largest ad networks, and search listings on Yahoo and Google.

The company said its revenue has doubled this year, as automakers shift ad budgets online. According to eMarketer, Web auto advertising will reach nearly $2 billion this year, up 35 percent from 2005.

Jumpstart focuses on reaching serious car buyers, rather than general awareness ads. It sells placements on car-comparison sites and uses behavioral targeting to reach in-market customers on other sites. Jumpstart said its network reaches more than 5 million car shoppers per month.

“The company is well positioned in a fantastic marketplace,” Jumpstart CEO Mitch Lowe said, in a statement. “This investment will enable us to grow even faster.”

Jumpstart recently lured John Durham from Aegis Group’s Carat Fusion to serve as its new president of sales and marketing [Adweek Online, Aug. 1].