Find Commerce seeks funding
Find Commerce, an AI-powered e-commerce platform that bridges product discovery with a retailer’s inventory, is seeking to raise $2.5 million in a pre-seed round, CEO Akeil Cange tells Axios exclusively.
Why it matters: Retailers globally have lost about $1.75 trillion in annual revenue due to overstocking, out of stocks and returns, according to retail analysis firm IHL Group.
The latest: Find Commerce is looking for strategic partners that can help the company bolster its valuation and scale, Cange says.
- “I want people who have been to the promised land, and have helped build those companies and sat with executives that are great at what they do or exited companies,” he says.
- He hopes to close the round on Dec. 1.
What’s next: Once closed, Cange hopes to finalize a minimum viable product within six to nine months that he can then roll out to clients or prospective pilot programs.
- He plans to start raising another round within a year that will support its going to market.
How it works: The company’s platform scans photos and content from publishers, influencers and regular people to identify the brand of clothing that they’re wearing.
- The software then connects consumers to a retailer’s full scope of inventory using an API that scours the globe to find where the product is in a retailer’s inventory.
- The customer will then be able to buy the product and get it shipped directly to their home.
The big picture: Retailers have struggled with excess inventory for several months now, as geopolitical uncertainty and shifting consumer habits have made forecasting demand more difficult.
- The result? Retailers have had to slash prices to clear their inventory glut.
- The discounts will likely continue into the holiday season, industry participants say.
Of note: Cange has tapped a team that has retail chops and the know-how of scaling a business.
- Annie Huang brings her experience at Fendi and Louis Vuitton to the company as its marketing and consumer behavior consultant.
- Advisers include Isaac Vaughn, a board member of digital legal tech company Rocket Lawyer and ex-CEO of video content workflow management company Ooyala, and Lord & Taylor vet Tasha Blackman.
The bottom line: The platform will “enable the company to operate as one centralized inventory unit to optimize their supply chain, and, ultimately, to be able to monetize excess inventory that may sit in alternative [geographies]," Cange says.
- This taps into demand that may be elsewhere but ensures that excess inventory gets cleared in retailers' supply chains, he adds.