Search tech co Hooja raises $1.5m from Facebook investor

The company intends to open an R&D center in Israel.

Search technology start-up Hooja Inc. has raised $1.5 million from some well known-investors, including Peter Thiel, one of the founders of online payment processing company PayPal, and the first investor in social networking site Facebook. PayPal was sold in 2002 to eBay Inc. (Nasdaq: EBAY) for $1.5 billion. Thiel, who also invested in companies such as Friendster, LinkedIn and Slide, manages the hedge fund Clarium Capital, which manages $2 billion in assets. Thiel is considered a maverick in Silicon Valley. In contrast to the customary models he makes small investments, giving entrepreneurs a free reign.

Hooja was founded one year ago by Naama Moran, and it is currently operating in stealth mode. The company is developing a unique search technology that enables content providers to access personal and social information about users. Sources inform ''Globes'' that the company will use the finance to set up an R&D center in Israel and recruit local manpower.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes.co.il - on December 31, 2007

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2007

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