Disney, Saban back Playbuzz

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Playbuzz, a US-Israeli platform for distributing online content, has raised $15 million backing from Saban Ventures and Walt Disney.

Existing investors 83North, Carmel Ventures and FirstTime Ventures also participated in the funding, which follows a $16 million investment round last year. Playbuzz says it will use the money to develop its platform and expand its sponsored-content business, which works with companies such as Pizza Hut, Unilever and Ford to create advertising campaigns.

Playbuzz is used by f publishers such as Time, USA Today, the Daily Telegraph and HBO to create content in new formats to boost audience engagement.

“People are becoming impatient and don’t read a lot today. Traditional media is usually long-form articles or video and they don’t make sense in an era where people discover content on a four-inch screen,” Shaul Olmert, Playbuzz’s New York-based CEO, told Reuters.

Olmert said the average time spent looking at a traditional news article is less than 15 seconds compared with 3-4 minutes for Playbuzz-powered content.

With 100 employees including 60 in Israel, Playbuzz makes money from sponsored content and began seeing revenue in the last quarter of 2015.


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