AOL to acquire firm that personalizes content for $83-mln

Thu Jan 23, 2014 8:20am EST

Jan 23 (Reuters) - AOL Inc has agreed to buy
Gravity, a company that tailors content according to the
reader's interest, for $83 million, a move to help better target
advertising the company said on Thursday.
    AOL, which is already part of Gravity's network, said it
will use its technology across its own properties like
TechCrunch and the Huffington Post as well as AOL's publisher
network of more than 2,000 partners.
    "Our theory is the web is going from search to social to
personal," said AOL CEO Tim Armstrong. "Gravity is the best
company in the world to do personal."
    Gravity co-founder and CEO Amit Kapur said Gravity uses
machine based algorithms to determine what topics are
interesting to a specific reader based on their preferences and
habits.
    "When you go to a website, it organizes the entire
experience just for you," said Kapur, who was also the chief
operating officer of MySpace.
    Gravity clients include a range of brands and publishers
like Sony, Intel and USA Today.
    AOL said as part of the deal, it will acquire about $12
million of net operating losses, which is expected to result in
a future tax benefit to AOL of about $5 million.