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Outbrain appoints Chief Technology Officer

Outbrain, a leader in content discovery, yesterday announced the hire of Yuval Ben-Itzhak as Chief Technology Officer of its Global Engineering organisation.

After more than five years as the CTO at AVG Technologies, Yuval will oversee the expanding team of global engineers who are building innovative products for publishers and brands.

With a proven track record of scaling teams and products, Ben-Itzhak’s hire comes as Outbrain plans for its next phase of growth. Outbrain now serves personalised content recommendations in over 150 countries and reaches over 557 million unique visitors from across the globe, says the company.

Ben-Itzhak comes to Outbrain with more than 20 years of experience as an entrepreneur and senior technical leader at innovative companies like Finjan, Intel and AVG Technologies.

“In Yuval, we found an innovative, versatile thinker who has a successful track record of launching impactful products and leading best-in-class engineering teams,” said Outbrain’s co-founder and CEO Yaron Galai. “He joins the company at a pivotal moment in our advancement and we couldn’t be happier with the result of our CTO search.”

As the CTO at AVG Technologies, Ben-Itzhak established AVG’s leading position in the mobile security market, demonstrated by more than 100 million downloads of its mobile products. In 2015, AVG surpassed the mark of 200 million active users. Ben-Itzhak was also a key member of the leadership team that took the company public in 2012.

Prior to his tenure at AVG Technologies, he spent over four years as CTO of the cybersecurity company Finjan, where he was in charge of six international groups: security research, intellectual property, new products, competitive analysis, business development and marketing.

“I decided to join Outbrain because it’s an incredible business that has the audacity to tackle hard problems. Helping people discover relevant content online is extremely difficult, but Outbrain has the technical prowess to do it well,” said Ben-Itzhak, who will divide his time between Outbrain headquarters in the U.S. and Israel. “I hope to work with this incredible team to create even better experiences for publishers, marketers and, of course, consumers of online content.”

Ben-Itzhak is a graduate of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel and a holder of 11 U.S. patents. He is a frequent commentator in outlets like USA Today, the Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, CBS News, BBC and Sky News. He also speaks regularly on the future of mobile, security, privacy, consumer dynamics, and disruptive innovation.