TechNation: Israel's Taboola Links Up With AOL

Cybersecurity startups raised $500m in 2015 | Neura raises $11 million for Internet of Things.

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Taboola founder and CEO Adam Singolda in 2013.Credit: Ilya Melnikov

Taboola in tie-up with AOL

Fresh from an agreement with Microsoft’s MSN Networks, Israel’s Taboola announced Thursday a strategic alliance with AOL. The U.S. company will buy shares in Taboola as part of the agreement, which seeks to help content providers counter the market power of social media, especially Facebook.

“We’re entering a new era where social platforms are growing to become very powerful, asking users to consume content within their closed ecosystems and never leave. This is a long-term risk to journalism as we know it and publishers’ underlying business,” said Taboola CEO Adam Singolda.

Taboola, which provides content recommendations below news articles, has worked with AOL since 2013. The new deal expands the company’s reach to all AOL media properties, including TechCrunch and the Huffington Post. (Nati Tucker)

Cybersecurity startups raised $500m in 2015

A cybersecurity expert monitors telecommunications traffic at a network operations center in a Verizon facility in Ashburn, Virginia, July 15, 2014.Credit: Reuters

Israel’s cybersecurity sector raised some $500 million last year, up from $320 million in 2014 and $140 million in 2013, the National Cyber Bureau said this week.

“There are still no figures for global investment but it appears that Israel’s share was 20%, second only to the United States,” NCB said. Israel’s cybersecurity exports were $3.5 billion in 2015, about 5% of the world total, the NCB said. Exits by Israeli cybersecurity totaled $1.3 billion, up from $700 million in 2014.

The agency said Israel has 250 cybersecurity  companies, half of them five years old or less, and 25 multinational companies operate Israeli cyber  research and development centers. (Amitai Ziv)

Neura raises $11 million for Internet of Things

Partners in Pitango Venture Capital. Credit: Yoram Reshef

Neura, whose technology is used to personalize the Internet of Things, said Monday it raised $11 million in a round led by AXA Strategic Ventures and Pitango, with Lenovo Group.

Neura, which is based in San Francisco with a research and development in Herzilya, said it would use the proceeds for R&D, marketing and partnerships and to hire about 20 people this year, 15 in Israel. Its technology constantly updates user behavior to predict future behavior for health devices, cars and homes.

Neura’s technology is “a big step towards a world where devices not only connect to each other, but adapt themselves to users and their habits,” said Peter Hortensius, Lenovo’s chief technology officer. (Inbal Orpaz)