Kingfish was founded by two former Huffington Post employees, Rob Fishman and Jeff Revesz.
BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti was a cofounder of the Huffington Post.
Revesz will become a senior developer at BuzzFeed and the other two developers, Adrian Fraiha and Andrew Kelleher, will join BuzzFeed's engineering team.
Fishman won't be joining BuzzFeed. Instead, the former Huffington Post social-media editor will take some time to figure out what's next.
Kingfish Labs launched a product, Yoke, that used Facebook data to recommend potential romantic matches for people based on the information in their profiles. Unfortunately, the service never really took off.
"We had less expertise around online dating than maybe we should have," Fishman tells Business Insider. "We were looking at it through more of a Facebook lens than a dating lens. Someone will crack that Facebook dating nut; unfortunately it wasn't us."
Given the Huffington Post roots of both companies, Fishman says Kingfish Labs and BuzzFeed have been talking since Day 1. Peretti and Revesz worked closely while at The Huffington Post, and Kingfish Labs was incubated out of Lerer Ventures, an investment vehicle Peretti advises.
Besides hiring most of its talent, BuzzFeed has plans for the technology Kingfish Labs developed. It wants to use Kingfish Labs to jump on a big revenue opportunity: making Facebook Sponsored Stories—the hybrid mix of advertisements and content that Facebook advertisers pay to display in users' News Feeds—go viral.
BuzzFeed has proven it knows how to spread content. It's looking to expand that knowledge beyond its platform to Facebook and Twitter by helping advertisers create effective, viral sponsored stories.
"Kingfish developed unique techniques for understanding social data which is very relevant to BuzzFeed's business as a social publisher," Peretti told Business Insider.
"We are working on some big new projects with Facebook. In particular, we've had great success extending BuzzFeed social advertising campaigns into Facebook Sponsored Stories. Kingfish technology will greatly expand our targeting and optimization in this area. Kingfish will enable us to power the leading Sponsored Story buying solution and holds potential for Twitter buying as well."
Neither BuzzFeed nor Kingfish Labs would discuss the acquisition terms, but both said the merger was a win for investors. Kingfish Labs raised $500,000 and it shared many of BuzzFeed's investors.
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