Il Makiage Acquires Israeli AI Company

  • American tech-driven beauty brand IL MAKIAGE has acquired Israeli deep-tech AI-based computational imaging startup Voyage81 for $40m.

    IL MAKIAGE, which is based in New York City’s Soho area, was relaunched in 2018 by brother and sister duo Oran Holtzman and Shiran Holtzman-Erel. Two years later, the company became the fastest-growing online beauty brand in the United States.

    Voyage81 developed the only patented software in the world that gives smartphones hyperspectral imaging capabilities. Where a normal smartphone photo detects three wavelengths of color, Voyage81’s software can detect 31.

    The acquisition of Voyage81 was the result of a long-running search for specific technology, according to IL MAKIAGE CEO Oran Holtzman.

    “For the past two years, we have been searching for computational imaging solutions that can work in beauty and wellness to further advance our existing AI capabilities,” said Holtzman.

    “I have met dozens of computer vision startups but could not find a technology that can fit our industry and was strong enough to fulfill our goals. Bringing on Voyage81’s patented technology and exceptional team to our tech and data science departments is a HUGE win for our company’s future, our users, and the industry at-large.”

    The software developed by Voyage81 can analyze skin and hair features from a photograph taken with a smartphone and use that data to create maps of blood flow and melanin. This information can in turn be used to create personalized skincare.

    Voyage81’s founder and CEO Niv Price is the former head of R&D at Unit 81, described by the Jerusalem Post as “the most elite technological unit in the Israeli Defense Forces.”

    Price said that when he met with IL MAKIAGE, he had no intention of selling the company he founded in 2019.

    “But after meeting Oran and learning about the company’s long-term vision, we realized that under the IL MAKIAGE platform, Voyage81 technology will serve and benefit hundreds of millions of consumers, fulfilling our founding goal,” said Price.

    Voyage81 isn’t the only tech company to be snapped up by IL MAKIAGE. In 2019, the beauty brand acquired NeoWize, a Y Combinator-backed data science startup that develops advanced active machine learning algorithms.