WASHINGTONDigital radio developer iBiquity Digital Corp. said it has raised $45 million in private equity financing to launch its AM and FM broadcast technology.
IBiquity (Columbia, Md.) is preparing to launch a digital radio service based on its in-band, on-channel (IBOC) broadcast technology. The technology has been endorsed as a U.S. digital radio standard by the National Radio Systems Committee, an industry group.
IBiquity said that 14 of the 20 largest U.S. radio broadcasters, radio equipment and automobile manufacturers, along with financial institutions, have invested in the planned service.
Regulators also have endorsed IBOC because it can use existing broadcast spectrum.
The company said it expects to launch the IBOC system in early 2003. Receivers are expected to be ready in time for the Consumer Electronics Show in January 2003.
The private equity financing was the largest ever for iBiquity. Robert Struble, president and chief executive officer, said the funding should see the company through the commercialization stage.
With the latest investor, Susquehanna Radio, Struble said that the nation's top 11 radio broadcasters are now owners of iBiquity. Other investors include Grotech, JP Morgan Partners, New Venture Partners and Pequot Capital.
Additional strategic partners include Ford Motor, Harris, Lucent Technologies, Texas Instruments and Visteon.