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AOL’s Patch Targets Primary States For Expansion

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Patch, which has continued to grow rapidly in the wake of AOL’s purchase of the Huffington Post earlier this year, is launching 33 hyperlocal sites in three states with early presidential primaries — New Hampshire, Iowa, and South Carolina. The new sites mean Patch will soon have sites in 21 states, up from its current 18.

AOL (NYSE: AOL) says that in addition to providing the typical Patch mix of local news, business listings, and (just-launched) posts from community members, the new sites will offer “comprehensive coverage of the issues in play, instead of a ‘horse race’ approach to reporting,” complete with “interactive features like blogging and polls, social media tools, candidate questionnaires and video interviews.” Patch, which is losing money, is presumably also hoping for lots of political ads too.

We’ve asked Patch to give us an updated count on the number of hyperlocal sites it has and hopes to have by the end of the year. The last we heard there were 800 Patch sites and Patch was hoping to have more than 1,000 sites by year-end.