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Israel has its first billion dollar Internet startup

The Israeli press reports that JP Morgan acquired a $100 million stake in Conduit at a $1.3 billion valuation. JPM bought remaining shares held by early Conduit investor Yozma, completing Yozma’s exit from Conduit following its recent sale of $39 million of stock at an identical valuation to private equity group W. Capital Partners.
 
Conduit’s cash cow is its toolbar, which the company says has been used by more than 200,000 sites, including MLB.com and Miniclip, to reach 250 million users. When those users run a search via the publisher’s toolbar, Conduit receives a volume and ad performance payout from either Microsoft’s Bing (in the US) or Google (outside the US).
 
Israel’s The Marker reports Conduit generated $200 million in profit last year on $500 million revenue, but I think those numbers are somewhat exaggerated. In any case, Conduit right now is indisputably a cash machine. But Shilo knows it can’t stay that way in its current form.
 
More about Conduit: conduit.com

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