Israeli content recommendation company Taboola announced on Monday that it will go public on the New York Stock Exchange at a USD 2.6 billion valuation and seek to raise USD 545 million to power its platform. The company will first go through a merger with ION Acquisition Corp, a special-purpose acquisition company (SPAC) that is already listed on the NYSE, Haaretz reported last month.
Taboola had previously planned to merge with Outbrain, also an Israeli content platform, but the deal fell through reportedly due to market changes brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Taboola was founded in 2007 with headquarters in New York and is headed by CEO Adam Singolda. As a content discovery and advertising platform, Taboola partners with publishers such as CNBC, The Daily Mail, and USA Today among over 9,000 digital properties, to drive audience monetization and engagement through the respective sites’ own editorial content as well as recommendations paid for by advertisers.
Today, Taboola says its recommendation platform, which is powered by advanced AI algorithms, provides over 1 trillion recommendations a month to approximately 500 million daily users.
In a blog post announcing the move to go public, Singolda said Taboola invested approximately USD 100 million in R&D in 2020 and expects to do the same in 2021 as it looks to expand.
Singolda said he is “convinced that personalized recommendations should be everywhere, helping people make decisions that matter to them—what to read, what to buy, where to go,” and that Taboola will expand to power recommendations of e-commerce products, mobile applications, games, and more.
“Today, we’re proud of the Taboola team that has made us a ubiquitous presence on the open web and for helping to bring our category-defining technology to market,” Singolda said in a company statement. “Aside from our technology and team, Taboola’s success is built on a simple idea—deliver value to our partners in a way where we only grow if our partners grow, in a true win-win manner.”
Gilad Shany, CEO of ION, said, “The combination of long-term partnerships built by the company with thousands of open web digital properties, their direct access to advertisers, massive global reach, and proven AI technology allows Taboola to provide significant value to their partners, while also achieving attractive unit economics as the company grows.”
Taboola is expected to close the transaction later in 2021 and will trade on the NYSE under the new symbol TBLA.
This article first appeared in NoCamels, which covers innovations from Israel for a global audience.