Today is the first day of the rest of Claria's life as a behavioral targeting firm as it leaves the adware business and launches, in beta, its PersonalWeb downloadable personalized homepage application, writes ClickZ. PersonalWeb uses the behavioral targeting approach of Claria's erstwhile GAIN and BehaviorLink networks to deliver editorial content and ads to users. The company has secured $40 million in financing for PersonalWeb from Asia Pacific Ventures, Sand Hill Capital, Softbank America and Rogers Communications.
Yahoo Japan (owned in part by Softbank) and Claria have entered into a joint venture to distribute Claria's platform to users in Japan, possibly bundled with instant messaging or a toolbar, writes MediaPost. The details haven't been finalized, and the deal will go into effect at the end of this year or early next year.
PersonalWeb constantly refines, based on anonymous behavior tracking, the content and relevant ads it serves to users on their PersonalWeb homepages, writes ClickZ. Users can choose which email, search engine, RSS feeds and other tools and content on the homepage. Private-label editions will be offered in June, allowing publisher-branded versions.
Claria hopes that automation will set PersonalWeb apart from other personalized homepage offerings, such as Google's or Yahoo's. According to a Claria study, less than 10 percent of users manually customize a homepage.
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