Marchex to Acquire Pay-per-Call Provider

Marchex announced plans to acquire pay-per-call provider VoiceStar, which it hopes to use to bring call-based ad services to its direct-navigation network.

In June, Marchex launched more than 100,000 local and vertical Web sites, each with unique content that includes yellow pages listings, user-generated and expert ratings and reviews, and of course plenty of ads from Marchex's ad network.

"We have distribution. That's half of it," Marchex Chief Strategy Officer Peter Christothoulou told ClickZ. The platform is ready to integrate pay-per-call with its dashboard and offer local marketers the option to pay for online leads resulting in a phone call, which many small businesses find more valuable, he said.

The deal is reportedly worth $20 million, plus $8 million in additional investments through 2008.

About the author

Kevin Newcomb joined ClickZ in August 2004, covering search marketing and other online marketing topics. He has been reporting on web-based businesses since 2000.

Before the bubble burst, Kevin was a marketing manager for an online computer reseller, handling copywriting, e-mail marketing, search marketing and running the affiliate program.

With a combination of real-world marketing experience and years of business journalism, Kevin brings to ClickZ a unique ability to deliver news and training materials that help online marketers do their jobs better.