Facebook Acquires Web Publishing Startup Chai Labs
As part of its expansion strategy, Facebook recently acquired Chai Labs, a startup that helps companies build search-friendly websites focused on specific topics.
According to BoomTown, the estimated cost of the acquisition was figured at around USD 10 million. BoomTown also alleges that the acquisition happened to take advantage of Chai Labs’ talent, not products or services.
Chai Labs was established by ex-Google AdSense executive Gokul Rajaram, and its advisory board and investors include LinkedIn (LinkedIn) Chairman and PayPal alum Reid Hoffman, Andreessen Horowitz’s Marc Andreessen, and Google Ventures partner Joe Kraus, previously CEO of JotSpot. Chai Labs’ website claims that Associated Content, the Travel Ad Network and NBC Local are among its clients.
Unlike other web publishing companies, Chai Labs specializes in semantic search technologies. The company claims that these technologies make it easy and simple for consumers of editorial content to find information within a specific vertical like travel or local news. It is not yet clear on how Facebook plans to cash in the expertise that it got ahold of, since it is doing just about everything now.
Other recent acquisitions include local recommendation service NextStop, photo-sharing service DivvyShot, and Sharegrove, a platform for sharing content and messages in real-time.