Patch Media

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Patch Media, also known as, is an American local news and information platform, based in Manhattan. It is primarily owned by Hale Global.[1] As of January 2022, Patch's more than 100 journalists operated approximately 1,259 hyperlocal news websites, which also have an information component, in 50 U.S. states and Washington, D.C.[2][3][4][5] Patch is operated by Patch Media Corporation.[6]

Patch Media
Patch (website) logo.png
Type of site
Area servedUnited States
OwnerHale Global
CEOCharles Hale
ServicesOnline news and opinion
LaunchedDecember 2007; 15 years ago (2007-12)
Current statusActive

Patch is first, a local news website. sites contain news and human interest stories reported locally. It does not offer international news. Patch also provides a platform for users to post questions, news tips and columns germane to their towns. Each site also contains a mixture of local and national advertising. The latter includes a self-serve ad platform allowing users to communicate directly with targeted audiences.[7][8]


Patch was founded by then-president of Google Americas operations Tim Armstrong, Warren Webster and Jon Brod in 2007 after Armstrong said he found a dearth of online information on his home-neighborhood of Riverside, Connecticut.[9] AOL acquired the company in 2009 shortly after Armstrong became AOL's CEO. Armstrong told AOL staffers that he recused himself from negotiations to acquire the company and did not directly profit from his seed investment.[10][11]

The acquisition occurred on June 11, 2009.[12][13] AOL paid an estimated $7 million in cash for the news platform as part of its effort to reinvent itself as a content provider beyond its legacy dial-up Internet business. AOL, which split from Time Warner in late 2009, announced in 2010 it would be investing $50 million or more into the startup of the network.[14] As part of the acquisition Brod became President of AOL Ventures, Local & Mapping, and Warren Webster became president of Patch.[15]

Following the acquisition, Patch began a period of rapid expansion, becoming one of the largest employers of professional journalists in the US at the time.[16] The company grew from 46 markets to over 400 in 2010. The New York Times wrote in 2011, "AOL's Patch: Finding Progress Where Others Have Failed."[17] In 2011, Patch acquired hyperlocal news aggregator from investors including Union Square Ventures and others, integrating the technology into the Patch platform.[18]

In 2013, Patch was spun out of AOL as a joint venture with Hale Global.[19] In January 2014, the new owners announced layoffs of 400 journalists and other employees.[20]

In February 2016, The Wall Street Journal reported that Patch had 23 million users, was profitable and expanding into new territories.[21] In 2018, Patch completed its third profitable year in a row, attracting an average of 23.5 million unique visitors monthly. Patch employs nearly 150 people, including 110 full-time reporters, many from the nation's leading newsrooms.[22]

Alison Bernstein was named CEO in September 2019,[23] and later transitioned to the company's board. Rob Cain, formerly of Omron Adept, became Patch's CEO in November 2020.[24] Charles Hale informed Recode in 2019 that his network of 1,200-plus hyperlocal news sites was generating more than $20 million in annual ad revenue, without a paywall.[25]


  1. ^ Kaufman, Leslie (January 15, 2014). "AOL Finds a Partner to Run Its Troubled Patch Division". New York Times.
  2. ^ Keith, Tamara (17 August 2010). "AOL Aims High With Hyperlocal Journalism Project". Retrieved 17 August 2010.
  3. ^ Hardy, Quentin (17 August 2010). "AOL's plan to own your neighborhood". Retrieved 17 August 2010.
  4. ^ Chandler, Michele (9 December 2010). "Local News Becomes Web's New Boom". NetNewsCheck. Retrieved 27 December 2010.
  5. ^ "All Patch Locations by State | Patch". USA Patch. Retrieved 2022-01-26.
  6. ^ "Our Terms of Use". Retrieved September 3, 2012.
  7. ^ Moses, Lucia (2018-10-16). "How profitable Patch is automating ad buying". Digiday. Retrieved 2019-06-13.
  8. ^ "How 'hyperlocal' news app Patch is trying to regain trust in media". The Daily Dot. 2018-12-26. Retrieved 2019-06-13.
  9. ^ Cain Miller, Claire; Stone, Brad (April 12, 2009). ""Hyperlocal" web sites deliver news without newspapers". The New York Times.
  10. ^ Schonfeld, Erick (June 11, 2009). "AOL Buys Local Startups Going And Patch (And CEO Tim Armstrong Brings an Investment In-House)". TechCrunch.
  11. ^ "About Us". Patch. Retrieved 2014-01-17.
  12. ^ Savarese, Chris (June 11, 2009). "AOL Acquires Two Local Services, Patch and Going". Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  13. ^ McCarthy, Caroline (June 11, 2009). "AOL thinks local, acquires Patch and Going". Archived from the original on August 4, 2009. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  14. ^ "AOL's Patch plans 500 local sites by end of 2010". Associated Press. August 16, 2010.
  15. ^ "Jon Brod". May 12, 2010. Archived from the original on June 1, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  16. ^ Tartakoff, Joseph (2010-08-17). "AOL's Patch aims to quintuple in size by year-end". the Guardian. Retrieved 2022-01-18.
  17. ^ Kopytoff, Verne G. (2011-01-17). "AOL Bets on Hyperlocal News, Finding Progress Where Many Have Failed". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2022-01-18.
  18. ^ "Confirmed: AOL's Patch Buys Hyperlocal News Site Outside.In". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2022-01-18.
  19. ^ "AOL Shifts Patch to Joint Venture with Hale Global". Deadline. January 15, 2014.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  20. ^ "Patch Hit With Sweeping Layoffs As New Owner Hale Global Restructures". TechCrunch. January 29, 2014.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  21. ^ Marshall, Jack (2016-02-02). "Patch Rebounds After Split From AOL". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2018-01-18.
  22. ^ "'Patch' Celebrates Profitability, Explores AI". Retrieved 2019-06-13.
  23. ^ "An Update From Patch". Across America, US Patch. 2019-09-16. Retrieved 2019-10-29.
  24. ^ "About Patch". Patch. Retrieved 12 January 2021.
  25. ^ Kafka, Peter (2019-02-11). "The alternative to your dying local paper is written by one person, a robot, and you". Vox. Retrieved 2019-06-26.

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