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Daydream Secures $50 Million In Seed Funding to Launch New AI-Powered Search and Discovery Shopping Platform

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NEW YORK, June 20, 2024-- Today e-commerce tech and retail veteran Julie Bornstein along with co-founders Matt Fisher, Dan Cary, Lisa Green and Richard Kim announce they raised a $50M seed round co-led by Forerunner Ventures and Index Ventures with participation from GV (Google Ventures) and True Ventures to launch Daydream, a powerful new, AI-powered platform that will change the way people shop online.

Launching in Beta this fall, Daydream will introduce its first shopping category, a highly personalized shopping experience powered by a built-in, superhuman search engine that offers a better way to find and discover women's and men's fashion. Daydream will also have the largest high-quality branded fashion catalog found anywhere.

Daydream is building an entirely new platform from the ground up, leveraging the latest developments in generative AI, machine learning, and computer vision to change the end-to-end shopping journey and experience starting from search and discovery. Bornstein, as co-founder and CEO of Daydream, has recruited a world-class founding team with former leaders from Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Nordstrom and Farfetch, who have spent decades at the intersection of online shopping, technology and artificial intelligence. This combination of shopping and technology expertise, led by Bornstein – who herself has spent more than 25 years transforming the e-commerce experience – makes this team uniquely qualified to pioneer a new conversational commerce experience.

"I have always been particularly obsessed with search and personalization and could not be more excited for the massive gains in AI over the past year," Bornstein said. "We can finally build an intelligent online shopping platform that will make it easy and fun for consumers to find products they love among the best selection of brands and retailers in the world."

In its pre-launch phase, Daydream already has close to 2,000 brands in its catalog through partnerships with both multi-brand and mono-brand retailers.

While existing shopping and e-commerce sites are trying to retrofit their experience to incorporate AI into their legacy systems, Daydream will be the first business that was conceived and built to take advantage of the latest advancements in AI and apply them directly to a new and improved consumer experience that is both intuitive and highly personalized. Daydream was created to remove many of the pain points of online shopping and help consumers find what they need and love from all of their favorite brands in one place.

"For decades, search has been the prevailing entry point to the internet, but it's increasingly fraught and ineffective when people are looking for personalized, specific answers that meet their unique needs. With AI, we believe we can do so much better than the chaotic, cluttered experience that search has become," said Kirsten Green, Founder and Managing Partner at Forerunner. "We believe that search will transition to service, with the search giants dominating the space losing market share to new entrants providing personalized, AI-driven services that work in collaboration with consumers to meet their end goals and delight with a fundamentally new level of value. Daydream is leading this shift in commerce, with the opportunity to reimagine the way we shop and discover things we'll love."

"Fashion has been an anchor investment sector for us, at Index, for decades. We've been very bullish about the potential of applied AI to disrupt this sector, so when Julie and Daydream came along, we worked on convincing them to partner with us. The depth of experience across the founder team, combined with a rare understanding of the relevant technology, gives them a strong foundation to transform this enormous industry." said Danny Rimer, Partner at Index Ventures.

"Eighty-eight percent of shoppers are more likely to visit sites that personalize their experience. Daydream takes a new AI-driven approach to create a better shopping experience online with highly-curated product recommendations," said Frédérique Dame, General Partner at GV. "We believe the winners in this new technology chapter will be those who deeply understand consumer AI and search trends, and the Daydream team has unparalleled domain expertise in this area. We're thrilled to partner with Julie Bornstein and the team as they build a category-defining AI platform that changes how people shop online."

Before launching Daydream, Bornstein held leadership roles at startups including Stitch Fix, where she served as the Chief Operating Officer and Board Member, helping to scale the company to $1 billion in under six years. She built and led e-commerce at multi-channel retailers including Sephora as the Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Digital Officer, Nordstrom and Urban Outfitters. Most recently, Bornstein was the co-founder and CEO of THE YES, an AI-powered shopping platform startup for women's fashion that was acquired by Pinterest in 2022 for its groundbreaking technology and extensive brand partnerships roster, two years after launching.

The seasoned executive team also includes:

• Dan Cary as Chief Product Officer, formerly at Google including Google's AI Research Group
• Matt Fisher as Chief Technology Officer, who led Data and Applied Science at Microsoft and oversaw measurement and marketing science at Amazon for Prime Video
• Lisa Green as Chief Commercial Officer, who has spent her career at the intersection of fashion and technology, leading partnerships and business development for Google, THE YES, and Condé Nast
• Richard Kim as Chief Strategy Officer, most recently Head of Shopping Strategy and Operations at Pinterest, Chief Growth Officer at THE YES and VP of Strategy at TMON, who has spent his career in scaling dual-sided marketplace startups

Daydream's private beta launches today and will launch publicly this fall. To learn more about Daydream or sign up for the waitlist, visit https://daydream.ing/. If you're a brand or retailer interested in joining Daydream, visit https://partners.daydream.ing/.

Contact:
PRESS CONTACT
JBC
daydream@jbc-pr.com

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