, New Rival of Craigslist and Ebay, Launching With 300 Newspaper, Broadcast Partners

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By: Mark Fitzgerald — a newspaper industry response to Craigslist and Ebay — launches next week with nearly 300 newspaper and broadcast partners, its developer, Ranger Data Technologies said. is promoted on media sites, which share transactional fees from the online auctions.

The site will be activated on newspaper and other media sites Monday prior to a national launch June 21.

“Because of the explosive growth in Internet usage in the past decade, a new revenue opportunity has opened up for newspapers and other local media. was designed in part to regain revenue lost to online classified advertising and auction sites while giving consumers a secure and competitive alternative rich in local content,” Ranger Data founder and Chairman George Willard Sr. said in a statement. was featured in the April 2010 print edition of E&P.

Under the business model, ZIP codes are “licensed” to newspapers and other media partners who then have the exclusive right to split transactional fees generated by the auction site. If the buyer and seller are from different ZIP codes, the fee is split. If they are from the same ZIP code, the newspaper keeps the entire transaction fee.

Ranger Data said it has licensed 20% of the approximately 29,700 residential ZIP codes in the U.S.

“Besides obtaining a greatly needed revenue stream and the opportunity to compete with Ebay and Craigslist without incurring overhead costs, our partners have another way to interact with customers while further proving the value and strengths of the local media,” Ranger Data President and COO Tony Marsella said in a statement.

Among the newspapers signing on to are the Boston Herald and Austin (Texas) American-Statesman.

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