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Outbrain Buys Slovenian Adtech Startup Zemanta for $25 million


Israeli content recommendation company Outbrain has announced the acquisition of Zemanta, a Slovenian-founded startup with headquarter in New York. The details of the deal were not disclosed, but it is estimated at $25 million.

This is the fifth acquisition of Outbrain, and apparently, the most significant one one in terms of the size of the company and the number of employees. Zemanta is a platform for purchasing ad spaces that fit into the site pages in a “natural” mode.

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Founded in 2006 by Uri Lahav and Yaron Galai, Outbrain has 600 employees in Israel and in the US. The company is considered the pioneer in the recommendations on content tailored to the users without having to search for it actively across the Web. The search based on data such as browsing history, demographics, and user consumption preferences, allowing publishers to show more articles, extending their stay on the site, and distributing marketing content to advertisers.

Like Outbrain, Zemanta is a platform for acquiring native advertising space that fits into the site pages in a “natural” way, as an integral part of them. The Slovenian company offers the only native advertising solution that allows marketers to conduct large-scale campaigns across multiple sites like Yahoo, Facebook, and Outbrain. Zemanta is unique in its ability to bid based on predicted user engagement, making it a natural fit with Outbrain’s offering. This acquisition will allow Zemanta to grow its current business, serving existing brands, agencies, and marketers as well as expand globally.

Outbrain CEO Yaron Galai said, “Digital marketing has grown on the strength of two important trends – efficiency gains from programmatic buying, and the effectiveness that comes with native advertising. Marketers no longer have to sacrifice one in favor of the other. By pairing Outbrain’s global network with Zemanta’s platform, marketers will be able to deliver scale, brand safety, and user engagement in one offering.”

Zemanta CEO Todd Sawicki said, “Together we have the resources and scale to show the world how native advertising will truly be the foundation of the next phase of online advertising. Now under the umbrella of Outbrain, we will continue to be able to grow the Zemanta One Native DSP as we expand both our network of over 30 programmatic native exchange partners globally, as well as, the industry leading features that have made our DSP the best in class platform for programmatic native buyers.”

Outbrain currently serves about 250 billion personal recommendations per month to more than half a billion users on leading sites in the world, including: CNN, Le Monde, Fox News, The Guardian, Sky News and more. So far, Outbrain has raised $ 145 million, and its investors include Lightspeed, Carmel Ventures, Gemini, Glennrock, Index, Herbroost and Rhodium. The company’s development center operates from Israel and has branches around the world.



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