Location, location, location isn’t just the catchphrase of estate agents but is also the basis of whereonearth.com’s L-Sphere technology, which allows users to find local amenities or a specified destination and then produces a map showing how to get there.
Founded in 1995 by Steve Packard, whose first company produced the Trivial Pursuit board game, whereonearth.com supplies its services to risk assessors in the insurance industry and to internet search-engine providers such as Yahoo. However, Packard believes L-Sphere’s main application will be in the third-generation (3G) mobile telecommunications market. Sales at the London company have grown 210% a year from £265,000 in 1999 to £2.5m in 2001, when it made big losses. The firm has raised £5m in venture capital from Amadeus and Reuters Greenhouse among others.
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