SMARTBARGAINS GETS FUNDING: Online off-price retailer SmartBargains Inc. received a commitment for $18 million in equity funding from a group of investors including Highland Capital Partners, Maveron, General Catalyst, Gordon Brothers and Time Warner. The company said Tuesday it plans to use the funds for marketing efforts and merchandise purchases. "The additional funding will help introduce SmartBargains to millions of new value-conscious customers," Robert Higgins of Highland, said in a statement. SmartBargains also said Benjamin Fischman was appointed president and chief executive officer. Fischman was previously chief marketing officer of the company for five years. Boston-based offers branded apparel, electronic, home goods and jewelry at up to 70 percent off retail prices.

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