Before you get excited about the weekend, check out our ecommerce news roundup.

1. Lazada To Join For 2017 Asean Expansion

Lazada, a leading e-commerce platform in Southeast Asia owned by Alibaba Group, is gearing up to tap into the burgeoning cross-border e-commerce market next year, in a move set to create greater opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises in Asean and China. Read the rest of story here.


2. Unilever said to be the early frontrunner to acquire The Honest Company

The Honest Company sells a number of consumer products like diapers, baby formula, bath and body care, and even laundry detergent. It’s also known for its high-profile co-founder, actress Jessica Alba. Read the rest of the story here.


3. Flipkart is still leading India’s ecommerce scene

Amazon India is still second to Flipkart (and is likely to stay so) despite a fast-growing market share, a recent Bank of America, Merrill Lynch report said. Read the rest of the story here.


4. Adyen, a payment platform that works with both Uber and Grab might outlast them

Adyen is huge. It processed US$56 billion in payments in 2015, doubled its revenue to US$371 million, and made US$45 million in profit. Read the rest of the story here.


5. Image recognition startup ViSenze gets $10M to power ecommerce in Singapore

Oliver Tan, ViSenze co-founder and CEO points out how rare it is these days to raise series B, as not a lot of players in Singapore writes these checks. Read the rest of the story here.


Computer vision startup ViSenze has raised series B round of funding worth $10.5 million, reports Tech in Asia.

The round is led by existing investor Rakuten Ventures, Rakuten’s investment arm. It was also co-led by WI Harper Group, which specializes in cross-border investments between the US and China, and early-stage venture capital firm Enspire Capital.

Oliver Tan, ViSenze co-founder and CEO points out how rare it is these days to raise series B, as not a lot of players in Singapore writes these checks.

Oliver attributes investor interest to the startup’s tech and the traction it has achieved in the last couple of years.

It’s one thing to have cool technology, but you also have to show it translates to a product that solves problems and that clients are willing to pay money for.

What does ViSenze do?

ViSenze builds visual search and image recognition software, specializing in ecommerce and retail applications. Its tech combines computer vision, machine learning, and artificial intelligence to provide image-based search and item recommendations.

The company’s tech is used by ecommerce providers in several markets like Rakuten, Lazada, British fashion marketplace Asos, Indian fashion e-tailer Myntra and Flipkart.

The company says its revenue has grown more than 300% year on year. Oliver declines to provide specifics, but states that search volume increased tenfold in the last year compared to the previous one.

Funding money put to use

The funding will enable ViSenze to build up its research and development team, in order to increase its scale and capacity to deal with global search volumes.

ViSenze is working toward new applications of its technology, including visual recognition search on video – which is in prototype stage for now.

The team will open more international offices. Headquartered in Singapore, it also has an office in San Francisco. It wants to add London, India, and China to that list. “China is a very different market, our strategy is more driven by partnerships, but our long term goal is to build market presence through local tie-up.”

A version of this appeared in Tech in Asia on September 15. Read the full version here