The clothing retailer giant Gap Inc. is pursuing its transformation towards tech retailing. The company just announced the acquisition of Context-Based 4 Casting (CB4), an Israel-based startup focused on artificial intelligence and retailing. The amount of the deal was not disclosed but CB4 had previously raised $30 million from Sequoia, Pereg and Octopus, and the Israeli newspapers Calcalist estimated the acquisition around $150 million.
Context-Based 4 Casting was founded in 2013 by two Israeli scholars, Irad Ben-Gal and Gonen Singer, and officially launched in 2014 with a first round of investment worth $6 million. Its technology is used by other clothing’s retail players such as Levi’s, Urban Outfitters, Lidl, PriceRite and Kum & Go. In 2020, 1,500 stores worldwide were using the CB4’s technology to optimize sales. CB4’s technology provides predictive tools to anticipate customers’ demand on a store-per-store basis.
All the 60 employees of the startup will become Gap Inc.’s employees. Gap Inc. owns and manages 3,000 stores worldwide, and recently migrated its technology to the cloud to make it more agile and growth-ready. The Gap is maintaining its goal to become a connected retailer, having recently acquired Drapr (3D virtual try-on tools) and invested in the fitness platform Obé Fitness.