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Exclusive: Lily AI lands $20M Series B extension

Mar 14, 2024
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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Lily AI, an e-commerce product discovery platform, raised a $20m Series B extension to expand into new geographies and use-cases, CEO Purva Gupta tells Axios exclusively.

Why it matters: Leveraging new consumer trends and vernacular, Lily AI wants to translate data into language customers actually use.

Zoom in: The round was led by Conductive Ventures, with new investors Counterpart Ventures, Cendana Capital and Transform Capital joining.

  • Existing investors Canaan — which led its $25 million Series B in 2022 — Sorenson Capital and NEA participated.
  • The company has raised $62 million to date.

How it works: The company uses AI-powered image recognition and natural language processing to extract attributes from a retailer's product catalog. The company then ascribes common search terms to those products.

  • For instance, if a shopper searches a phrase like "statement blazer," they can find relevant products on a retailer's website.

What's next: Funds give Lily AI at least two years of capital runway, Gupta says.

  • Lily AI is expanding into international markets, including the UK, where it's already seeing traction.
  • "The retail stack will be where you have to infuse the language of the consumer into different applications. And so they want those integrations built in," she says.
  • Eventually, Lily AI's use cases could extend into recommendations, filters and facets, and "all the way upstream into demand forecasting," Gupta says.

Lily AI's training data is proprietary and has been collected over several years, Gupta says.

  • "All of the private data of a retailer can be leveraged to distinguish them," she adds.
  • Lily uses different types of data — like what a consumer wants when searching for an item, or attributes needed for better SEO — and tailors that to specific use cases.
  • "There's a lot of change that's happening in how the consumer is describing things and what they are doing," Gupta says.
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