Etsy, the online marketplace for handmade goods, has acquired artificial intelligence start-up Blackbird Technologies for an undisclosed sum.
Blackbird Technologies analyses user behaviour and data to provide shoppers with relevant and personalised search recommendations. Etsy plans to integrate the technology to suggest products to customers and to help search functionality.
The entire Blackbird team – including co-founders, chief executive Nikhil Raghavan and chief technology officer Manju Rajashekar – have joined Etsy.
Etsy chief executive Chad Dickerson said: “Buyers come to Etsy.com for items they can’t find anywhere else and our goal is to help them discover exactly what they want among our 40 million unique listings. Leveraging Blackbird’s technology, we believe we can enhance the buyer experience by making search quicker and easier and by surfacing even more relevant, tailored product recommendations.
“Leveraging Blackbird’s technology, we believe we can enhance the buyer experience by making search quicker and easier.”
Etsy chief executive Chad Dickerson
“Our team has already made substantial enhancements to the search & discovery process on Etsy, especially through features like Exploratory Search, and we are excited for Blackbird’s world-class team and technology to accelerate our progress in this key area.”
It comes as the Brooklyn-based retailer is facing intense competition after Handmade, Amazon’s marketplace for crafts, expanded into Europe this month, rolling out across Germany, France, Italy, Spain and the UK. Handmade already features over 30,000 handcrafted items.