SOURCE: Outbrain

Outbrain

February 02, 2011 16:38 ET

Outbrain Acquires Surphace, Creates Market Leader for Content Discovery

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - February 2, 2011) - Outbrain (www.outbrain.com) today announced that it has acquired the Surphace technology and other assets (formerly known as Sphere) from AOL Inc. Through this acquisition, Outbrain broadens its reach among leading online publishers, while enhancing its technology and overall product suite to create the category leader in online content discovery. AOL will leverage the combined platform on its own network of content sites to increase engagement and grow traffic.

Publishers that will now use the Outbrain platform as a result of the acquisition include AllThingsD, AOL, Lonely Planet, Los Angeles Times, Billboard and WordPress.com. These add further scale to Outbrain's fast-growing list of publishing partners, which includes USA Today, Ziff Davis, iVillage, Slate, The Boston Globe, The Daily Beast and Newsweek.

"By putting the best of both platforms together, we will further establish Outbrain as the leading content discovery platform for premium online publishers," said Yaron Galai, Co-Founder and CEO of Outbrain. "Our primary goal at Outbrain has always been to provide readers with the most compelling content recommendations possible and to empower publishers to increase revenue from their content in a user-friendly way. Merging the Surphace technology into our platform allows us to advance that mission in a very significant way."

Surphace CEO Josh Guttman will be joining the Outbrain team as Senior Vice President and will head Outbrain's strategic platform integrations. "I'm thrilled to see this come to fruition and to join the Outbrain team. Surphace and Outbrain have a long shared mission in helping publishers grow their business while providing readers with an engaging experience. Combining the two businesses to create the clear winner in content discovery was an easy decision," said Guttman.

Outbrain provides online publishers with a service for recommending content links to increase traffic and page views, generate revenue and enhance the user experience. The Outbrain service also enables publishers to better monetize their content pages by leveraging recommended links to 3rd party content. The core Outbrain service is free for publishers and can be easily installed here: http://www.outbrain.com/getwidget.

About Outbrain
Outbrain (www.outbrain.com) is the leading content recommendation engine, reaching a highly engaged audience through distribution on top publisher sites, including USA Today, iVillage, PC Magazine, Chicago Tribune, Newsweek, The Daily Beast and Slate. Outbrain provides publishers a service for recommended links to increase traffic and generate revenue, and marketers a way to their distribute content alongside publisher's own editorial recommendations. The company is headquartered in NYC with R&D in Netanya, Israel. It was founded in 2006, and is backed by Carmel Ventures, Gemini Israeli Fund, GlenRock, Rhodium, and Lightspeed Venture Partners.

About Surphace
Surphace (www.surphace.com) is a robust content recommendation platform in use by many of today's leading online publishers including: LA Times, Baltimore Sun, Popeater, AOL News, Billboard, Wordpress.com and others. Founded as Sphere in 2005, Surphace helps publishers create a more engaging reader experience leading to longer time spent on site and increased page-views and an incremental revenue stream. Surphace was funded by True Ventures, Trident Capital and Hearst and acquired by AOL in 2008.

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