Previously known as Playbuzz, EX.CO is short for The Experience Company, and it provides publishers and other customers with an easy way to add interactive and visual elements (such as polls and product recommendations) to their content. The company says its publisher business grew revenue by 300% between 2018 and 2020.
According to co-founder and CEO Tom Pachys, over the past year, he's become convinced that artificial intelligence is "taking over everything we do."
"We started searching for companies that did video in a sophisticated way, meaning using [machine learning] as part of their core engines," Pachys said. "When I say that, I mean things like choosing the right content, choosing the right ad, knowing how to manage an [ad] auction in the right way."
He said Cedato stood out because it's able to do all of this without affecting page load time; this will be increasingly important to Google's Core Web Vitals measurements, and therefore to search rankings.
"It’s always a trade-off between efficiencies and revenues in general," Pachys said. "But for [Cedato], in a very surprising way, they can increase speed and increase revenues."
By adding Cedato's technology, EX.CO will be able to offer its customers things like predictive recommendations for video content, header bidding for video ads and improved support for connected TVs. Conversely, the company will continue to support existing Cedato customers while also offering them additional products.
"We’re not taking anything away, we're just adding more solutions," Pachys said.
The financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed, but the entire Cedato team (based in New York and Israel) will be joining EX.CO.
"Since the company’s inception, Cedato has been laser-focused on creating the most advanced video tools with a simple, customer-first approach," said Cedato founder and CEO Ron Dick in a statement. "Ex.co has a similar vision, powerful technology, and a large, loyal clientele base. Working together enables us to offer cutting-edge technology to our range of global partners, continuing to lead the way with product innovation that supports the market’s primary needs.”
Pachys added that EX.CO is looking to make more AI-related acquisitions, with the next one likely coming on the commerce side.