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  • 04 Mar 2015

    A Carmel Exit: Nielsen Acquires eXelate

    New York – March 4, 2015 – Nielsen today announced that it has completed its acquisition of eXelate, a leading provider of data and technology to facilitate the buying and selling of advertising across programmatic platforms. This acquisition allows Nielsen to enable its clients to make better and faster marketing and media decisions.


    With the acquisition of eXelate, Nielsen clients gain the ability to activate in real-time Nielsen audience insights as well as eXelate’s aggregated consumer segments from over 200 data providers. eXelate’s advanced technology leverages data to inform the highest quality programmatic buying decisions in the marketplace.


    “This acquisition creates a tremendous opportunity for Nielsen in the programmatic media ecosystem,” said Steve Hasker, Global President, Nielsen. “Adding eXelate’s solutions to the Nielsen family furthers our ability to help marketers improve the effectiveness of their advertising campaigns and to help media companies better sell their content.” 


    eXelate aggregates and distributes third-party online data, composed of premium demographic, interest, and intent data from over 200 online and offline data providers. Nielsen intends to further develop and expand eXelate’s already rapidly-growing data marketplace and innovative technology solutions. 


    “eXelate’s advanced data solutions, innovative technology platform, and talented team of technologists will be a strong addition to the Nielsen family,” said Brian West, Chief Operating Officer, Nielsen. “Privacy is a priority for both Nielsen and eXelate. We will work closely with the eXelate team and continue to build privacy protections into all Nielsen products and solutions.”


    “eXelate’s mission is to power the digital marketing ecosystem with data and insights to better inform the buying and selling of advertising,” said Mark Zagorski, CEO, eXelate. “We are excited for the opportunity to accelerate our business by taking this next step with our longtime collaborator Nielsen.”


    eXelate is a member of the Network Advertising Initiative, Interactive Advertising Bureau, TRUSTe, Council for Accountable Advertising, and Evidon’s Open Data Partnership, and these affiliations will remain in effect.


  • 02 Mar 2015

    Perfecto Mobile Previews Revolutionary Hybrid Cloud Testing Lab Support for Location-based Apps and Internet of Things at Mobile World Congress

    BARCELONA, Spain — Perfecto Mobile, the world's leader in mobile app quality, today previews LocalLink, a new extension to its Continuous Quality Lab that addresses location-based quality needs and testing of Internet of Things (IoT), at Mobile World Congress. LocalLink expands test coverage and capabilities, mitigates risks that businesses face in releasing faulty apps, and improves the velocity of the app delivery process to accelerate overall time to market.

    Perfecto Mobile's LocalLink connects devices in-hand, to the cloud-based Continuous Quality Lab, allowing organizations to test their apps anywhere they choose while centrally managing all devices, hosted and local, in one integrated environment. LocalLink gives teams the flexibility to add devices to their existing cloud as needed, while still experiencing the benefits of the Continuous Quality Lab. In addition, LocalLink allows for testing IoT, which often requires proximity to the device during operation (due to connecting via Bluetooth or WiFi).

    “We are experiencing a revolution in the way companies create engagement through digital experiences for their customers. The need for flexibility in quality labs is critical to ensuring a flawless customer experience with any IoT device or location-based app,” said Roi Carmel, Senior Vice President of Product and Strategy. “We’re excited to be the first to introduce a truly flexible hybrid cloud test lab that addresses location-based use cases and IoT. We are evolving with the mobile device market in order to attain the best test coverage, mitigate risk for our customers and help accelerate the software development lifecycle to meet time-to-market demands.”

    In order to manage risks associated with poor app quality, it is important for enterprises to select a testing lab and platform that supports a continuous quality process and can be highly customized to address needs across a variety of use cases. LocalLink can be customized for:


    • Location-based Testing – In some cases there is a need to have a device at a specific location or in close proximity to the tester to ensure accuracy. This can be a critical requirement as mobile apps can be impacted by network conditions that can only be found on location (stores, banking branches, stadiums, etc.). With LocalLink, users can easily add devices from any location in the world, to the Continuous Quality Lab and run a fully managed and centralized quality process that is remotely accessed and includes all devices across multiple sites.
    • IoT and Unique Integrations – As the connected enterprise becomes more complex, so does the world of testing. The mobile landscape continues to evolve and grow to include interactions with unique or proprietary devices such as refrigerators, scales, thermometers, wearables, etc. but the overall testing process still needs to be managed holistically and as part of the continuous quality process users have come to expect. LocalLink makes this possible by allowing connectivity between the app and the IoT device to be conducted via Bluetooth or local WiFi.


    According to the report titled Predicts 2015: Internet of Things, published December 30, 2014, “Gartner’s assessment of the huge potential of the Internet of Things (IoT) is reflected in its forecast of a cumulative 25 billion things to be shipped by the year 2020, in industries ranging from automotive to food and beverage services. This potential partially obscures IoT contradictions, as it is both emergent and has been around awhile.” The release of LocalLink addresses the unanswered need for quality in such an evolving market.

    LocalLink will be made generally available next month. To learn more about LocalLink, please visit http://blog.perfectomobile.com/2015/02/27/product-preview-local-link/ and see a demo at Mobile World Congress, Hall 7 702MR.

    About Perfecto Mobile

    Perfecto Mobile, the world’s leader in mobile app quality, provides a hybrid cloud-based Continuous Quality Lab that enables mobile app development and testing teams to deliver better apps faster. The Continuous Quality Lab supports testing processes earlier and more often in the development cycle, giving way to faster feedback and improved time to market. Users can access an exhaustive selection of real mobile devices connected to live networks around the world and leverage them for testing and monitoring throughout the mobile application development lifecycle – from development, functional and performance testing to monitoring and support.

    More than 1,500 customers, including 50% of the Fortune 500 across the banking, insurance, retail, telecommunications and media industries rely on Perfecto Mobile to deliver optimal mobile app functionality and end user experiences, ensuring their brand’s reputation, establishing loyal customers, and continually attracting new users. For more information about Perfecto Mobile visit www.perfectomobile.com or follow us on Twitter at @PerfectoMobile.

    Read more here: http://www.heraldonline.com/2015/03/02/6845016_perfecto-mobile-previews-revolutionary.html?rh=1#storylink=cpy


  • 26 Feb 2015

    Facebook's Most-Shared Publisher to Start Paying Its Quiz Makers

    PlayBuzz's User-Generated Posts Account for 98% of Its Content

    Even if you've never heard of PlayBuzz, you've probably come across its end product. Its platform is behind such Facebook quizzes as "Which Disney Mom Are You?" and lists like "18 Photos That Prove That Online Dating Is Terrifying." The company, thanks to the virality of such content, has become the most-shared publisher on Facebook -- yes, topping even BuzzFeed. And it's done so without paying for most of the content it publishes. That's starting to change.

    Commonly called a "BuzzFeed clone," PlayBuzz has parlayed its quizzes and listicles into Facebook popularity. In January people shared more PlayBuzz stories on Facebook than any other publisher, according to social content analytics firm NewsWhip. But PlayBuzz, which launched in January 2014, doesn't consider itself a publisher.

    "We're not a publisher in our DNA. We don't have an editorial staff," said PlayBuzz CEO Shaul Olmert, son of former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert.

    Mr. Olmert isn't exaggerating much when he says PlayBuzz doesn't have an editorial staff. The 50-person company does have an internal content team of seven employees, but that staff typically handles content moderation and trains publishing and brand partners on how to create content on PlayBuzz.

    PlayBuzz's content staff will sometimes publish articles to test new pre-formatted article templates, like one that enables people to create trivia posts, but it only accounts for 2% of the content posted to PlayBuzz, Mr. Olmert said; eight months ago the company said the figure was 10%. PlayBuzz's community of 5,000 creators account for the remaining 98% of its content, using the site's several article templates to create their own quizzes and listicles that are published on PlayBuzz.

    As the amount of user-generated content on PlayBuzz has grown, so has its traffic. In January 2015, 14.7 million people in the U.S. visited PlayBuzz's site on their desktop computers, tablets or smartphones, according to comScore. That traffic has grown by 201% since May 2014, the earliest month for which figures were available. PlayBuzz's internal figures claim the site received 80 million unique visitors around the world in January, Mr. Olmert said.


    "This is a way for PlayBuzz to hedge their business model," said eMarketer analyst Paul Verna. Like most publishers, PlayBuzz relies on people sharing its articles to Facebook and people clicking on those Facebook links to read the articles on PlayBuzz. But it's just as reliant on people to create those articles. "I think it's part-and-parcel to make the people who contribute invested," he said.

    In order to pay these people, ad-supported PlayBuzz will need to improve what it offers advertisers. Right now the site carries so-called "remnant" ads sold through automated ad auctions that typically prize the ad's audience over its surrounding content. This ad-network revenue generates "decent money," Mr. Olmert said, noting that the company is profitable. However it was never PlayBuzz's intended revenue stream and likely couldn't sustain the company's revenue-sharing plans.

    "We started as a pure [business-to-business] play. The dream was to be used by thousands of different publishers and make money by charging them for premium services," Mr. Olmert said. The strategy has half-worked. Tens of thousands of publishers including NBC, AOL and Yahoo create content on PlayBuzz or embed the site's stories on their own sites. But those publishers only bring in a minority of PlayBuzz's traffic, he said. People unexpectedly gravitated to the site on their own. 

  • 05 Mar 2015

    RT @UKIsraelHub: Thanks @Level39CW for hosting a great #fintech #innovation discussion for #texchange delegates @carmelventures http://t.co…
  • 05 Mar 2015

    RT @UKIsraelHub: Hub Chairman Haim Shani speaks to #texchange delegates about #fintech #innovation @Mazars_UK @carmelventures http://t.co/…
  • 04 Mar 2015

    Congrats to @markzexelate & team on the Nielsen acquiring @eXelate! congrats to @Menloventures, Trident & NewSpring http://t.co/2l13fr4A4w

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Carmel Ventures  is a venture capital firm, empowering early stage start-ups to become category leaders 

Founded in 2000, Carmel Ventures is managing over $800M across four funds. As Israel’s top tier VC firm, we invest in Israeli or Israeli related early stage companies and build global category leaders. Carmel invests across a number of key market segments including: software, new enterprise infrastructure, big data, digital media, consumer applications and semiconductors.

  Our team approaches the investment as a proactive, hands-on endeavor. Carmel Ventures typically leads or co-leads investments and take an active role on the Board of Directors while keeping a low ratio of companies per partner. With strong M&A and IPO experience, the Carmel team has backed a disproportional share of Israel’s category leaders that generate over $50M in annual revenues, including: Outbrain, ironSource, Payoneer, and more.

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