Artificial intelligence

Softbank-backed AI firm expands into behaviour prediction

The acquisition by Taiwan’s Appier is the latest in a drive to expand AI marketing services for consumer-facing businesses

Taiwanese AI software firm Appier announced its acquisition of Tokyo-based online consumer behaviour predictor Emin Wednesday in a primarily cash deal of undisclosed size.

In addition, Appier has brought on several of Emin’s early stage investors as shareholders.

Emin - short for Emotion Intelligence - uses AI to determine which customers will make a purchase and provides additional incentives to encourage faster transactions.

“Shopping cart abandonment is a big problem for online retailers - if not the most challenging of all - and one we are committed to solving,” said Appier chief executive Chih-Han Yu.

The Japanese startup, launched in 2011, tries to solve this problem by offering time-sensitive discounts to online consumers with items in their checkout carts.

Partnering with Appier will enable the company to “continue to bring our customers AI solutions that ensure they stay competitive,” explained Emin chief executive Asami Ota, who will continue in her current role.

Emin services more than 800 brands and as part of Appier, it will be able to offer a larger selection of AI-powered marketing tools to clients.

Founded in 2012, Appier has raised more than $80 million for a range of AI marketing solutions and counts Sequoia Capital and Softbank among its investors.

The company’s last acquisition was of India-based QGraph in 2018, which came shortly before the launch of customer engagement platform AIQUA.

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