UBC Company Sold Again

Published on Wednesday, March 12, 2014


Flipboard Acquires Zite from CNN

Last week, CNN acquired the Zite news reader app from CNN. Evolved from technology developed at UBC, Zite is a news reader application that aggregates content for tablets.

After acquiring Zite for $20m two and a half years ago, CNN has resold the mobile news aggregator app company to Zite’s competitor Flipboard for a transactional value rumoured at up to $60m.  Venture backed Flipboard recently raised $160m at a reported $800m valuation.

Flipboard co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Mike McCue said during a conference call with reporters that Zite’s technology and recommendation engine, which helps readers discover content, were what drew Flipboard to the deal. The company says it will capitalize on Zite’s personalization technology, which enables the app to deliver results based on the user’s interests and social networks and interests.

“We are going to integrate that technology into Flipboard,” McCue said, adding that Zite will no longer be a stand-alone product.

As part of the deal, Flipboard will incorporate CNN content into its news reader and team up with the network to sell advertising. The Flipboard app enables people to create and curate their own digital magazines or follow other people’s magazines by areas of interest, incorporating a wide range of content, including social media posts as well as traditional news articles.

Read Zite’s blog announcement

And Flipboard’s announcement