BuzzFeed Acquires Kingfish Labs

Posted Sep 15, 2012

BuzzFeed has acquired a company called Kingfish Labs, a company that was founded by former Huffington Post employees Rob Fishman and Jeff Revesz.  BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti was a co-founder at the Huffington Post.  Revesz will be a senior developer at BuzzFeed.  The other two developers at KingFish Adrian Fraiha and Andrew Kelleher will be joining BuzzFeed’s engineering team.  Fishman will not be joining BuzzFeed.

Kingfish Labs created a product called Yoke.  Yoke used Facebook data to recommend romantic matches for people based on their profiles.  Yoke did not really take off though.

“We had less expertise around online dating than maybe we should have,” said Fishman in an interview with Business Insider. “We were looking at it through more of a Facebook lens than a dating lens. Someone will crack that Facebook dating nut; unfortunately it wasn’t us.”

Peretti and Revesz worked closely together at The Huffington Post.  Kingfish Labs was incubated by Lerer Ventures.  BuzzFeed plans to use Kingfish Labs’ technology to make Facebook Sponsored Stories.

“Kingfish developed unique techniques for understanding social data which is very relevant to BuzzFeed’s business as a social publisher,” added Peretti.  “We are working on some big new projects with Facebook. In particular, we’ve had great success extending BuzzFeed social advertising campaigns into Facebook Sponsored Stories.  Kingfish technology will greatly expand our targeting and optimization in this area. Kingfish will enable us to power the leading Sponsored Story buying solution and holds potential for Twitter buying as well.”

Kingfish Labs raised $500,000 in funding.  Many of the investors that put money in Kingfish also put money into BuzzFeed.