March 20, 2007 6:06 AM PDT

Ticketmaster buys stake in Echomusic

Event ticket retailer Ticketmaster announced Monday that it has acquired a majority stake in online-focused music marketing company Echomusic.

Echomusic specializes in online advertising and branding, Web-based sites and fan clubs, and digital distribution of music and merchandise. According to a statement from InterActiveCorp-owned Ticketmaster, the investment will benefit both companies by building brand awareness for artists, boost ticket sales and help build online fan bases.

Ticketmaster has cited the technology behind Echomusic, which calls itself "a Web 3.0 agency," as one of the primary reasons for the investment. The marketing company, based in Nashville, Tenn., counts artists such as Kelly Clarkson, Rascal Flatts and Keith Urban among its 300-plus clients.

Additionally, the new partnership between Ticketmaster and Echomusic will facilitate connections to other IAC properties, notably the search engine, which was acquired by IAC in 2005; and urban directory site Citysearch, which is a division of Ticketmaster.

"Echomusic offers back-office support that can manage consumer brand platforms," explained Ticketmaster spokesman Ed Stewart. and Citysearch, according to Stewart, would both benefit from access to that technology.

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