Ulta Beauty, the nation's largest beauty retailer, announced the launch of Prisma Ventures, a digital innovation fund set to invest $20 million in emerging technology start-ups.
WHO: Prisma Ventures is Ulta Beauty's digital innovation fund that provides capital investment, as well as access to the retailer's deep expertise and resources, to optimize and meaningfully deliver disruptive technologies. Fund participants will have access to Ulta Beauty's innovation team, unparalleled consumer insights, and in-market testing opportunities.
Prisma Ventures invests in early-stage start-ups that are primarily Series Seed and Series A technology companies within the innovation pillars of personalized and data-driven technology, AR, VR, and the metaverse, technology-powered custom beauty products, and in-store services and social commerce. The fund has made investments in Haut.ai, Adeptmind, Revea, Luum, and ReStyle.
WHY: Ulta established the fund to accelerate innovation through nurturing long-term, strategic partnerships. The fund pairs Ulta Beauty's size and scale with the agility and singular focus of tech start-ups.
IN THEIR OWN WORDS: "Launching Prisma Ventures is yet another way Ulta Beauty innovatively leads and delivers forward-thinking retail experiences. We believe this fund presents opportunities for creative disruptors to further propel the industry forward," said Prama Bhatt, Chief Digital Officer, Ulta Beauty. "We set out to build lasting relationships with startups, welcoming them into our ecosystem, co-creating and experimenting in ways that tap each other's expertise and ultimately leverage our resources to imagine—and reimagine—what's next for retail and beauty."
"Ulta Beauty's investment was a gamechanger, providing us both with an incredible opportunity to test, learn, deploy, and scale our low-code AI innovation platform. Ulta Beauty leveraged our platform to create engaging, differentiated experiences for beauty lovers nationwide, plus it added to Iterate's credibility," said Jon Nordmark, co-founder and CEO, Iterate.ai. "The collaborative spirit has been a constant throughout our six-year relationship which grew from a small agreement in 2016 into an eventual investment. Together, we're pushing the industry forward with incredible AI-, AR-, and IoT-related innovation."
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