SBJ/20100201/This Week's News

Accrue invests in HipLogic, again in RayV

Accrue Sports and Entertainment Ventures made two seven-figure investments recently as the venture capital and advisory firm forges its future without founding members Doug Perlman and Steve Solomon.

Accrue participated in a $7 million Series B funding round for HipLogic Inc., a mobile development firm based in the Bay Area. The round of funding was led by Palo Alto, Calif.-based Bay Partners and included several prior company investors. Accrue participated at a seven-figure level.

Accrue also made a seven-figure supplemental investment in RayV, the Los Angeles-based streaming media outfit that early last year represented Accrue’s first outlay after forming in 2008.

Accrue was part of a $7M round of funding
for HipLogic, a mobile development firm.

Perlman and Solomon left Accrue last fall. Perlman formed advisory firm Sports Media Advisors, and Solomon serves as senior adviser in that venture. Still, Bryant McBride, Accrue’s chief executive and also a founding partner, said the firm’s venture capital activity is increasing as the economy continues its slow improvement.

“We’re really excited about both opportunities,” McBride said. “These are companies that can really help sports entities reach fans in unique ways, and as the digital shift continues, we see both companies really innovating and having a lot of potential for growth.

“And economically, I’ve seen multiple data points suggesting that things are improving. [Merger-and-acquisition] activity is spiking up, and we’re going to be out aggressively looking for more deals.”

RayV now boasts several prominent online video contracts, including deals with the NBA, Tennis Channel, Fox Soccer Channel and DirecTV.

HipLogic, meanwhile, has developed a mobile interface that creates an iPhone-like, customizable platform on a variety of wireless devices. The company last week released a free HipLogic Live product that includes content from CBS Sports, among others.

“Sports programming is very important to what we’re building, and we see a huge opportunity in event-based sports programming for mobile,” said Mark Anderson, HipLogic chief executive and president. “We see Accrue as more than an investor, but also a strategic partner. Their contacts, particularly within the sports industry and on the East Coast, we believe are going to be very helpful.”

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