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October 23, 2013 3:20 pm

Israel Start-Up Outbrain Raises Additional $35 Million for Content Recommendation Engine

avatar by Joshua Levitt

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Israeli start-up Outbrain has raised $99 million so far. Photo: Outbrain.

Israeli start-up Outbrain has raised $99 million so far. Photo: Outbrain.

Israeli start-up content recommendation developer Outbrain has raised another round of cash, $35 million, increasing its total financing to $99 million to date, Israel’s Globes business daily reported.

Outbrain operates a content recommendations engine that recommends articles to online readers based on an algorithm that keeps users longer on sites they are visiting. Outbrain has also created a revenue-sharing model for recommendations that take users to other sites.

The funding round was led by HarbourVest, with the participation of Carmel Ventures, Index Ventures, Gemini Israel VenturesGlenRock Israel, Rhodium, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Vintage Partners.

“This is a company committed to providing value to readers and publishers through quality content. Outbrain is a clear leader in a growing and increasingly important part of the internet advertising marketplace. HarbourVest is excited to partner with management and current investors in the next phase of Outbrain’s growth,” HarbourVest Partners principal Ian Lane said.

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“This investment comes at a pivotal moment in Outbrain’s evolution. We’ve matured from an upstart content recommendation company to a key player in the content ecosystem and a trusted partner for the world’s best brands and publishers,” Outbrain CEO Yaron Galai added.

Outbrain said it plans to use the additional capital to continue expanding its content discovery platform as well as enter international markets. The company, which was founded in 2006 by Galai and CTO Ori Lahav, already has 13 offices worldwide.

Globes chose the company as its most promising start-up in 2011, and reported that it had been planning to raise between $100 million and $200 million in an initial public offering in the U.S. at a company valuation of  up to $800 million.

Outbrain reported revenues of $45 million in 2011, $80 million in 2012 and forecasts $130 million for 2013.

The company acquired Surphase in 2011, Scribit, which provides a digital content management and storage solution, in 2012, and Visual Revenue Inc., which helps content editors optimize content and its location on their sites, earlier this year.

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