Japanese flea market operator Mercari Inc. has hired a new team of AI engineers in the U.S. to predict the buying and selling behaviors of U.S. customers and give them more personalized experiences.

Mercari is battling Yahoo Auctions for the No.1 horizontal spot in Japan. Both sites are far ahead of competitors like Jmty.jp and Rakuten’s Rakuma. But Mercari operates in the red in the U.S.

The new engineering team, based in Cambridge, will be advised by professors from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

“Opening the Mercari engineering offices in Cambridge is an important addition to our global technology centers in Palo Alto and Tokyo,” Mok Oh, CTO for Mercari U.S. said in a statement. “The expectations of Mercari sellers and buyers are always evolving, so it’s vital that we harness emerging technologies to continuously improve our app and services.”

Tokyo-based Mercari was founded in 2013. It entered the U.S. market in 2014 where it has 45 million downloads and 150,000 new listings every day.

Mercari is also expanding its AI team in Japan.

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