The online local guide Citysearch, an IAC (NASDAQ:IACI) company, has teamed up with MerchantCircle, an online network and marketing company for local businesses. The partnership allows Citysearch to use MerchantCircle's scalable and fully automated platform for acquiring and engaging local merchants and distributing local content. In return, MerchantCircle will have access to Citysearch's vast database of businesses nationwide, its integrated Pay-For-Performance local advertising engine, as well as its pool of editorial content, user reviews, and merchant videos.
The partnership will also allow the companies to offer merchants co-branded sales packages and joint memberships. MerchantCircle will tap into Citysearch's local sales staff and national advertising team, while IAC will get a seat on MerchantCircle’s board of directors.
"Many of MerchantCircle's members are new to the web, and creating content on their own without the help of web professionals," Jay Herratti, president of Citysearch, said in a statement. "When combined with the assets and capabilities of Citysearch, there is a tremendous opportunity for both companies to transform local search and online advertising for local businesses."