The leading global sports apparel firm Nike has acquired Boston-based startup Celect, a predictive analysis platform, to boost its direct-to-consumer strategy. However, the terms of the acquisition have not been disclosed yet. Nike has recently been on the spree of acquiring companies strategically to get access to cutting edge technologies.
The company has made changes in its strategy and shifted its focus from acquiring apparel brands to tech-based companies. The recent acquisition adds to the long list of companies that Nike had already acquired.
Founded in 2013 by MIT professors Devavrat Shah and Vivek Farias, the startup uses AI technology to deliver data insights based on consumer behavior. The company helps retailers to optimize their inventory in stores and across the supply chain.
Celect has a total capital investment of $30.2 million from its four investment rounds with its latest Series C round, last December, witnessing $15 million led by NGP Capital and Fung Capital.
Through this acquisition, Nike plans to bring a personal touch and serve consumers on a personal level by anticipating the demand of the consumers within a span of 30 minutes.
Nike COO Erik Spunk revealed the company’s core strategy going forward, “As demand for our product grows, we must be insight-driven, data-optimized and hyper-focused on consumer behavior. This is how we serve consumers more personally at scale.”
Earlier in 2016, Nike acquired a digital design studio Virgin Mega that led to the design and launch of Nike’s SNKRS mobile app.
The apparel juggernaut continued its strategy to acquire data analytics startup Zodiac in March 2018 and AI-powered firm Invertex that empowered Nike to come up with Nike Fit mobile app. The app scans the user’s foot and displays shoe designs that are tailor-made.
Nike currently has a market capitalization of over $100 million. Nike’s digital wing witnessed a growth rate of 35% in the latest financial year. With the acquisition of tech companies such as Celect, Nike is sure to uphold its position as the undebated leader in the apparel industry.
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