In a statement, eLocal CEO Bruce Aronow said his firm would use the money to expand sales, marketing and technology and may use it to buy "complementary" ad tech firms. Up until now, eLocal has focused on home-services and legal-services advertisers; with LLR's backing it plans to "expand into other verticals that value live phone calls and leads." eLocal sells "pay per call" and "pay per lead" services and says its proprietary tech is eaiser to manage and priced more transparently than traditional lead lists.
eLocal investor-directors also include Bruce Aronow, eLocal's CEO since its 2008 founding; Andy Aronow, the company's president; and Andy Kaplan, a former RiteAid real estate lawyer who is partners with the Aronows in their real estate investment firm, Rockland Capital, of West Philadelphia.
eLocal was listed by accounting giant Ernst and Young as an "Entrepreneur of the Year" for its rapid growth, noted LLR partner David Reuter in a statement.
LLR, whose own investors include the Pennsylvania state pension funds, was started by investor and Valley Forge casino owner Ira Lubert, investment banker Seth Lehr and accountant Howard Ross.
LLR, which in recent years has invested in a string of Washington, D.C.-area security and military contractors, says this is its third Philadelphia-area investment this year. In October LLR invested $15 million in 85-worker Professional Capital Services (PCR), a Center City investment software maker, statement here. In June, LLR invested in 3SI Security Systems, a Malvern-based bank-security company. Statement here. Other current LLR investments in the region include CoreDial and SDI.