Ad Targeter eXelate Promotes Zagorski To CEO

Just a week after securing an add-on investment to its second round funding, behavioral ad targeting marketplace eXelate is promoting Chief Revenue Officer Mark Zagorski to CEO, replacing Meir (Iri) Zohar, the company’s founder, who is returning to his native Israel.

Last week, New York-based eXelate completed the second round it raised in August with the addition of Trident Capital as a new investor. In August, Menlo Ventures and Carmel Ventures invested $11 million with a commitment to invest an additional $4 million if needed, but Trident was willing to add $5 million, giving eXelate a total of $16 million for the second round.

The company, which was started in Israel, has become more internationally focused and is now firmly planted in New York.

Zagorski has been part of reorienting the company and building its U.S. operations since arriving at eXelate in April 2008. Before eXelate, Zagorski was EVP, CMO at MediaSpan, a software and online ad tech firm. Prior to that, he was president of WorldNow, the leading online network of local television news media properties.

The change at the top comes as eXelate and other businesses in the ad targeting space are facing more challenges from regulators, as consumers are starting to push back a bit more on ad targeting. At the same time, as online advertising continues its comeback, more marketers, especially in the travel and financial services industries, are looking to spend more on targeting. Plus the trend of marketers in general “buying audiences” as opposed to “content brands” like specific publisher sites, is also continuing apace, making services like eXelate’s and its competitors more in demand.