- Express Checkout
- Express Checkout #44 - the latest in CPG, Retail, and eComm
Express Checkout #44 - the latest in CPG, Retail, and eComm
Commerce and CPG news from the week of 9/25/2023
Last week was a fun one. I co-hosted a DTP (Direct-To-Pizza) party with Jess Cervellon and Patrick Johnson (founder of Progress Labs). Thank you again to our amazing sponsor's Recharge, Brij, Superfiliate, Archive and Littledata!
We’ll be hosting more in the future, so if you want to sponsor or attend let me know! My next one is in Austin, check out the details are below.
FounderMade’s Innovation Show x Hawkefest on October 19, 2023 in Santa Monica
The Consumer Council: NY #TechWeek on October 16th in NYC.
We found a SICK space, got Michelin Star sushi chefs, and a HUGE swag bag of cool CPG products!
ASK: We’re looking for alcohol brands to sponsor, preferably RTDs! email me at [email protected]
BevNet Live on December 4 - 5, 2023 in Marina Del Ray
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(If you’re reading this email in gmail it might get clipped! You can always view full issues here.)
🔥 Big News - 10 items or less 🔥
🗞️ News from the week (9/25/23 - 10/1/23)
They sell monopoly and might be one - The FTC and 17 state attorneys general have filed a lawsuit against Amazon, accusing the company of illegally maintaining its monopoly power through anticompetitive strategies. The complaint alleges that Amazon engages in exclusionary conduct to prevent competitors from growing and emerging, stifling competition on price, product selection, and quality. (source)
EU bans greenwashing, US next? - The European Parliament has reached an agreement to ban greenwashing practices and improve consumer information on product durability. The new rules will prohibit misleading marketing practices, such as generic environmental claims without proof, false sustainability labels, and presenting goods as repairable when they are not. The deal still needs final approval from the Parliament and the Council before becoming law. (source)
MIRROR mirror on the wall no more - Lululemon is discontinuing MIRROR and is shutting down its digital content arm Studio. The company has entered into a 5 year strategic partnership with Peloton, making Peloton its exclusive digital fitness provider and becoming Peloton's primary activewear partner. Peloton will acquire existing MIRROR members. Lulu bought MIRROR for for $500M just a few years ago. (source)
Shopify wholesale - Faire, a leading B2B retail marketplace, has partnered with Shopify to become their wholesale marketplace. Shopify has also become a Faire shareholder. (source)
Shopify actually acquired it’s own wholesale marketplace, Handshake, in 2019. It looks like they will be shutting down the service end of October 2023 per an internal FAQ page.
Meal kit brand acquired - Blue Apron has announced that it will be acquired by Wonder Group for $13.00 per share, approximately $103 million. Wonder plans to continue Blue Apron's operations under its current brand and enhance both companies' abilities to deliver high-quality meals to customers across the country. (source)
Rite-Aid in trouble - Rite Aid is planning to shut down hundreds of stores as part of its upcoming bankruptcy plan. The company is negotiating with creditors to liquidate a substantial portion of its more than 2,100 stores. (source)
🛍 Retail News
Dick's Sporting Goods is closing 11 out of 14 Moosejaw stores as part of its strategy to focus on its Public Lands stores. The closures, including Moosejaw's headquarters in Michigan, are scheduled for February 2024. Dick's will continue selling outdoor gear through Moosejaw.com. (source)
Toys R Us' has announced a partnership with Go Retail Group to open up to 24 flagship stores in the U.S. starting next year. The partnership will also include opening stores in airports and on cruise ships. (source)
Showfields has closed its NYC store in NoHo as part of its efforts to secure profitability and future expansion. The closure follows the retailer's decision to close its Miami store in July. (source)
StockX, the resale marketplace known for selling sneakers and other collectibles, is testing out physical retail with its first "shoppable experience" in NYC. The store will offer ~50 SKUs. (source)
Amazon has opened its 3rd suburban Amazon Go store. This is the first new location since the company closed nearly a third of its brick-and-mortar stores earlier this year. (source)
Maiden Home, an online DTC furniture brand, has opened its first flagship store in NYC. The 4,100-square-foot store aims to grow the company's design services and increase brand awareness. (source)
Maiden is not the first, nor the last traditionally DTC brand launching in retail. They follow the footsteps of brands like Parachute, Cuts, and Our Place building out physical locations.
Target has made the decision to close 9 stores across 4 states due to theft and organized retail crime. (Source)
Wawa, an amazing convenience retail chain, has announced plans to expand into the state of Indiana. Over the next 8-10 years, Wawa plans to open approximately 60 stores in the region, with the first locations expected to open in mid-2025. (source)
RaceTrac, a convenience store chain, has partnered with ICE Cobotics to integrate autonomous floor scrubbers in its Travel Center store locations. (source)
Robots are really taking over. Stores like Costco, Stop & Shop, and Giant are all implementing robots to either clean or take stock of store inventory.
🛒 CPG & Consumer Goods News
Fenty Beauty is expanding into Ulta Beauty at Target, offering a curated assortment of best-selling products in minis and sets. (source)
Actor Woody Harrelson and entrepreneur Amy Holmood have co-founded the Holistic Spirits Company, a plant-based spirits brand. (source)
Guinness has opened its 2nd US brewery in Chicago, housed in a 15,000 sq. ft. old railway depot. The facility includes a 10-barrel brewery, taproom, restaurant, and bakery. (source)
Actor and producer Dave Bautista has joined the ownership group of Texas-based Devils River Whiskey. (source)
ZENB has launched ZENB Cracker Crisps, a new snack made from yellow peas, olive oil, and seasonings. These grain-free and gluten-free crackers offer 5 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber per serving. (source)
TiNDLE Foods has launched its first domestically-made product in the US, a savoury Breakfast Sausage. The plant-based sausage will be available at selected restaurants in Los Angeles and New York City, and it marks TiNDLE's first collaboration with Just Egg. (Source)
Jared Leto has shut down Twentynine Palms, a beauty brand launched in a year ago in October 2022. Leto terminated his relationship with the parent company due to a breach of contract and mismanagement. Sales have ceased, and plans for expansion into other categories have been halted. (source)
Dassai, the brand of Japanese-made sake, has opened a new sake brewery in Hyde Park, New York. The facility offers tastings and tours, and its first sake, Dassai Blue 50, is now available. The company has partnered with the Culinary Institute of America to educate about sake. (source)
About 300,000 Onewheel electric skateboards have been recalled due to reports of injuries and four deaths. Future Motion, the manufacturer, received incident reports of traumatic brain injuries, fractures, and paralysis. (source)
Three Spirit Drinks has launched new bottles for their award-winning elixirs. The rebranding aims to catch the attention of sober-curious shoppers and features triangles on each bottle that represent the intended effect of the drink. What do you think? (source)
Humane, a secretive software and hardware company founded by former Apple employees, is set to unveil its inaugural product, the AI Pin, at an event on November 9. The device, described as a screenless, standalone wearable, uses sensors to enable natural and intuitive compute interactions. The AI Pin recently made a public appearance on supermodel Naomi Campbell during a fashion show in Paris. (source)
Popeyes has partnered with TRUFF hot sauce brand to launch a new line of TRUFF Chicken Sandwiches at select locations in Connecticut and North Carolina. (source)
The last big collab for Truff was Taco Bell, this brand has something going for it!
Furniture retailer La-Z-Boy has partnered with 3D Cloud by Marxent to introduce 3D product configuration and WebAR OnDemand technology on its website. (source)
Discount eComm app, Wish, has partnered with Pudo to offer click-and-collect options at over 1,200 locations in the U.S. and Canada. This move aims to improve Wish's shipping experience and regain market share from competitors like Shein and Temu. (source)
🏭 Supply Chain & Distribution News
FedEx has introduced a two-armed robot called DexR that uses AI to automate the task of loading delivery trucks with packages. (source)
ShipBob has partnered with TikTok to launch "Fulfilled by TikTok," a logistics program that enables brands and merchants on TikTok Shop in the US to sell more easily. Through ShipBob's fulfillment engine and network of centers, sellers can benefit from nationwide inventory storage, efficient order fulfillment, and fast shipping. (source)
UPS has announced its agreement to acquire MNX Global Logistics, a global time-critical logistics provider. This strategic move aims to expand UPS's capabilities in healthcare and time-sensitive logistics solutions. (source)
Amazon and Maersk have renewed their partnership to ship goods using biofuels throughout 2023 and 2024. This eco-delivery service will reportedly save 44,600 metric tons of CO2 emissions and now includes the use of Maersk's methanol-enabled fleet. (source)
💸 Funding news
Non-alcoholic beverage retailer Boisson has secured $5 million in funding and appointed Sheetal Aiyer as the new CEO. The funding, supported by Convivialité Ventures and Connect Ventures, will enable Boisson to expand domestically and internationally. (source)
Private equity firm Paine Schwartz Partners has raised $1.7 billion for investments in the food and agribusiness sectors. The firm's sixth and largest fund, Fund VI, is focused on sustainable investments across the food value chain. Paine Schwartz has already allocated 40% of the fund to growers and agtech businesses. (source)
Whipnotic, a company specializing in flavored whipped cream, has raised $2.5 million in funding to expand its distribution into retail and food service. (source)
Manna Beverages & Ventures, an affiliate of Manna Capital Partners, has announced it has acquire Nor-Cal Beverage Company, the largest independent co-packer of teas, juices, waters, and energy drinks in California. (source)
Bayer is expanding its Fruits and Vegetables business to include strawberries through the acquisition of the strawberry assets of UK-based NIAB. (source)
Apparel retailer Chico's will be taken private by Sycamore Partners in a ~$1 billion all-cash deal. Shareholders will receive $7.60 per share, a 65% premium to the stock's last close. (source)
Arc, a Los Angeles-based electric boat producer, has raised $70 million in Series B funding led by Menlo Ventures and included participation from existing investors such as Eclipse, Andreessen Horowitz, Lowercarbon Capital, and Abstract Ventures. (source)
Yaysay has raised a $10.3 million Series Seed investment led by Lightspeed Venture Partners. The platform aims to build a personalized, online, off-price channel for global fashion consumers. (source)
Slope, a B2B payments platform, has raised $30 million in a venture round led by Union Square Ventures and backed by Sam Altman. The funds will be used for product development as the company aims to digitize the $125 trillion B2B payments market. (source)
Lumi has secured seed round funding for their LumiCup, a product aimed at revolutionizing the disposable packaging industry. (source)
🧐 Interesting reads
Girlhood is easy to sell, womanhood is a bitter pill to swallow (Nikita Walia of Blank)
💡 Data, reports, and trends
Founder Salary Report 2023 - Pilot
New Research Highlights How Brands Can Capture Today’s Always-On Shopper (Retail Touch Points)
Saks Luxury Pulse Survey (Saks Fifth Avenue)
57% of enterprise marketers use AI in email campaigns, survey says (Marketing Dive)
US Consumer Confidence Fell Again in September (Conference Board)
Holiday Preview 2023 (Pitney Bowes)
The state of grocery in North America 2023 (Mickinsey)
Global Wellbeing report 2023 (lululemon)
😋 Brands and things I’ve tried this week
And if that wasn’t enough, I tried some snacks. This week we got jerky from the fine folks at Boozy Jerky. This stuff was good.
We also got sachet’s of Macadamia nut milk! Super excited to try these out. House of Macadamia is a fascinating company I’m looking forward to diving deeper on.
Thanks for reading! If you have any suggestions, feedback, or stories I missed, let me know!
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