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Israeli Firm Gigya Bought by Software Giant SAP for Over Billion Shekels in Cash

Gigya analyzes user data for large publishers like Fox and among its investors are Adobe

Gigya's founders Rooly Eliezerov, left, Eran Kutner and Eyal Magan
Gigya's founders Rooly Eliezerov, left, Eran Kutner and Eyal Magan Ofer Vaknin

SAP, Europe’s biggest software firm and the world’s fourth biggest, has agreed to pay over $350 million in cash for Israel's Gigya, TheMarker has learned.

The final details will be completed and made public within a few weeks. Eyal Magen, Rooly Eliezerov and Eran Kutner, the co-founders of Gigya, which provides a customer-identity management platform for large Internet sites, will each receive $17 million.

Gigya analyzes user data for large publishers. Its clients include Fox, Forbes and Turner, and among its investors are Israel’s Vintage Investment Partners as well as Adobe, Intel Capital and Advance Publications, which owns Condé Nast.

Gigya raised $104 million in seven rounds, the last in 2014, when it was valued at $300 million. Gigya has 100 employees in Israel.

Speaking to TheMarker in 2014, Eliezerov said, “We can be a billion-dollar company. When I imagine Gigya in five years, I see a user base of up to one billion. We see the trend from the firms using our services. It began with media firms, quick to try new things, moved to online business and now even insurance companies. We’re not worried about the potential market size.”

The company was founded in 2006 on the coattails of two increasingly dominant trends: the rise of social networks, then with Myspace and just before the so-called Facebook revolution; and the growth of online ecosystems to help leverage these social networks’ power. The three wanted to help connect the myriad of online content publishers to the increasingly popular social networks.

In the years that followed, with the success of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, the potential of sites that use information from social networks to enhance users’ experience became clear. Gigya knew how to use users’ identities on social networks — from geographic location, to personal interests to their influence on other users in their social networks — to help publishers to leverage their content.

SAP has been active in Israel since 1998 and employs over 700 workers. SAP’s largest purchase to date of an Israeli company was Top Tier, which it acquired in 2001 for $400 million.