Zefr Acquires Israeli AI Firm adverif.ai, Bolstering Technology-Led Approach to Identifying and Defunding Misinformation

Zefr is a technology company that provides content targeting solutions for brands advertising on YouTube. (PRNewsfoto/Zefr)

Acquisition provides additional machine learning, fact-checking and data science expertise to help brands avoid and measure misinformation across global platforms

Zefr, the global leader in brand suitability across walled gardens, announced today the acquisition of Adverif.ai, an Israeli-based AI company focused on identifying and defunding misinformation at scale. Adverif.ai’s AI-driven approach to misinformation is based on the world’s first fact-checking engine, which applies custom integrations with over 50 fact-checking organizations around the world to train dynamic machine learning algorithms to identify, label, and measure misinformation at rapid speed.

The acquisition continues Zefr’s commitment to being the leading global technology company for targeting and measuring brand suitability across high velocity environments. AdVerif.ai’s Israel-based team of data scientists and engineers, led by founder/CEO Or Levi, will join Zefr’s technology organization and be based out of Tel Aviv.

“Defunding misinformation is critical for brands, and it requires investment in technology solutions to ensure accuracy and scalability,” said Chris Murphy, SVP of Global Business Development, Zefr. “After diligencing the industry for a year, it became clear that Adverif.ai’s AI and tech-led approach was uniquely equipped to bring a scalable, unbiased and data-driven lens to the topic and seamlessly integrate with our existing platform, Cognition AI.”

The integration of Adverif.ai’s technology will enable Zefr’s customers to further measure and target content based on their brand suitability standards – with enhanced capabilities on the misinformation category, which has traditionally been one of the most challenging for marketers.

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“I’m encouraged by Zefr’s acquisition of Adverif.ai, as UM believes the role of media responsibility – inclusive of defunding misinformation – is critical,” said Joshua Lowcock, Global head of Brand Safety and Chief Digital Officer, UM. “Considering Zefr’s role in providing a verification product for the Facebook feed later this year, I’m pleased to see their investing in technical solutions for the challenges ahead.”

In June 2022, the Global Alliance of Responsible Media announced that misinformation would be the 12th category of its brand safety and brand suitability framework, reinforcing its importance to the future ad-supported media.

“Misinformation is one of the most difficult of harmful content categories for the advertising industry and regulators to address, and the consequences of  inappropriately addressing are troubling. We’re excited to see Zefr making this investment, as we start to implement our shared work on misinformation in this space. In our work on misinformation, we’ve identified scale and human oversight as critical barriers for the industry to overcome,” said Rob Rakowiitz, Initiative Lead, Global Alliance of Responsible Media (GARM). ” We see Zefr’s move aligned with our insight and our shared goal to effectively demonetize misinformation.”

The acquisition comes on the heels of Zefr’s announcement as a global brand safety and brand suitability measurement partner on TikTok, as well as the selection by Meta to build a brand suitability verification product for the Facebook Feed. With additional high velocity platforms being onboarded, this acquisition will help marketers get more accurate and transparent insights on the misinformation category.

“We are delighted to join Zefr’s mission and bring best-in-class technology solutions to scale brand suitability across the world’s largest platforms,” said Or Levi, founder and CEO of Adverif.ai. “Our technology is designed to deliver advertisers accurate and transparent data on misinformation, and we look forward to realizing Adverif.ai’s full potential as part of Zefr”.

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