Google acquires retail technology start-up

Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) has bought Rangespan, a U.K. start-up that uses data science to help retailers manage product listings and determine which products to sell and when.

The move comes as the company expands its Google Shopping Web portal and e-commerce offerings to more closely compete with Amazon and eBay. Rangespan could help Google Shopping work with more retailers and suppliers in managing products and inventory, further expanding on an initiative Google launched in 2011 when it partnered with Edgenet, a retail data provider, to improve the accuracy of its product listings from manufacturers and suppliers.

Rangespan was founded in 2011 in London by two former Amazon employees. The platform keeps a database of around 200 million products that are ranked according to forecasted future sales and provides these data to suppliers and retailers in the UK.

Rangespan is the third UK start-up to be acquired by Google this year. Google will absorb the company and its technology, and Rangespan will no longer sell services to clients. Rangespan has previously helped retailers such as Tesco and Asda use real-time sales data to better predict which products will be popular with customers and to better manage supply chains.

The terms of the purchase were not made public.

This is the second major announcement for Google's retail initiatives in recent months. In April, the tech company signed a deal with The Luxottica Group, owner of the Sunglass Hut, Ray-Ban and Oakley sunglass brands and retail stores, to design and distribute a new kind of eyewear for Google Glass. Google is also reportedly planning to open up its first-ever retail store in Manhattan's SoHo neighborhood.

For more:
-See this Rangespan announcement
-See this Ecommerce Bytes article

Related stories:
Domino's Pizza now accepting Google Wallet payments
Sunglass Hut teams up with Google Glass for virtual fitting room
It's time: Google unveils 'Android Wear' watch
Google to open first US retail store in NYC
Google's SlickLogin acquisition buys sound authentication technology