Vicinity Enterprises LLC, creators of hyper‐local Vicinity magazines and Vicinity Mobile, has been acquired by Surf Media Inc., the tech startup that places tablets in rideshare vehicles for the entertainment of passengers and the promotion of businesses and brands.
“Vicinity’s model to onboard local businesses and offers though Vicinity Magazine and its mobile app will now be available to Surf,” said Eli Chmouni, founder and CEO of Surf. “By combining Vicinity’s successful advertising sales and marketing model with Surf’s digital platform, passengers will immediately be able to access a greater variety of opportunities, offers and more with nearby businesses and services during their Uber and Lyft rides.”
As part of the acquisition, Vicinity will no longer publish its hyper‐local magazines and will instead provide digital content and advertising space for clients through Surf. “With more passengers and a targeted demographic, Surf’s technology will catapult our clients’ needs and exposure overnight,” explained Rick McCartney, founder and CEO of Vicinity Enterprises. “Surf will provide greater reach for our advertisers – and future advertisers – to be seen by those who already demonstrate a strong interest in local businesses and services. As well, consumers will benefit from expanded local content and entertainment in the immediate areas of their destinations.”
McCartney will take a role as Chief Sales Officer with Surf Media and will oversee Surf’s expansion into new markets. “Rick’s experience in working with local business, large and small, in multiple markets across the country as well as his management style will effectively lead the expansion of Surf in Arizona and beyond,” said Chmouni.
“Local residents and visitors, especially those who use rideshare services, want to stay connected in their own neighborhoods and vicinities around their hotels,” said McCartney. “And local businesses want to connect with them through a reliable and trustworthy format. Surf will provide that bridge so that millions of local passengers may connect as they arrive at their destinations or plan their lives locally.”
Surf features the ‘Best in Town’ business directory that integrates with the high‐quality, curated content, entertaining videos, movie trailers, music and games already found on Surf tablets. In addition to having a featured profile in the business directory, local businesses have the opportunity to create video campaigns and brand experiences to gain exposure and present offers to consumers.
The Surf ‘Best in Town’ directory is currently available on tablets in Phoenix and Los Angeles. Arizona companies that include the City of Tempe, Second Nature Clinic, Experience Scottsdale and Arizona State University have already taken advantage of the new advertising platform. Surf plans to expand to several cities in Texas, including Dallas, Houston, Austin and San Antonio, later this year.