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  • Express Checkout #62 - the latest in CPG, Retail, and eComm

Express Checkout #62 - the latest in CPG, Retail, and eComm

Commerce and CPG news from the week of 2/19/24

Hello hello, this time from….Palm Springs! 🌴🌞 

I’m out here for eTail West, if you’re in let me know! I’ll be hitting the show Tuesday and Wednesday. And will hopefully see you at Kustomer’s Valley House party on the 27th!

🎉 Also, brands! Don’t forget to sign up for my ExpoWest event on March 14th! - RSVP

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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 🔥

  • Walmart buys some TVs - Walmart acquired VIZIO for $2.3 billion. The acquisition will enable Walmart to enhance its Walmart Connect media business through VIZIO's SmartCast Operating System, offering innovative television and in-home entertainment experiences. (source)

  • Creators + Brands - Marques Brownlee (MKBHD), a popular YouTuber and tech reviewer, has joined Ridge as an Executive Board Member, Equity Investor, and Chief Creative Partner. Brownlee has been working with the brand since around 2020. (source)

  • Pinterest streaming - Pinterest has launched its first-ever streaming TV show called "Deliciously Entertaining" in partnership with Tastemade. The show, inspired by Pinterest trends, features host Danni Rose and her guests cooking, creating, and gathering based on Pinterest inspiration. Each episode includes on-screen QR codes linking to shoppable Pins. (source)

  • Not big news, but big shoes - Pepsi, Shaq, and Reebok have collaborated to create the Pepsi 'SNEAK'ER, a custom shoe designed to carry Pepsi Mini cans. The shoe, a modified version of the Reebok PUMP Shaq Attaqs, features a special chamber in the sole that can hold a Pepsi Mini can. (source)

    • apparently Shaq likes the mini cans, as if he didn’t look huge already

🗞️ News from the week (2/19/24 - 2/25/24)

🛍 Retail

  • Kim Kardashian’s brand, Skims, is planning to launch a storefront at Lenox Square in Atlanta. (Source)

  • Target has launched a collaboration with Diane von Furstenberg for an affordable spring collection. The collection includes over 200 pieces of apparel, accessories, beauty, and home items, with most items priced under $50. (source)

  • Wawa, a c-store with a cult following, plans to open 70 new stores in existing and new markets, including its first stores in Alabama, Georgia, and North Carolina. This is part of the company's aggressive growth plan, aiming to open up to 280 stores over the next decade. (source)

  • Big Lots has acquired the entire inventory of Hearthsong brand of children's toys, valued at over $22 million. The inventory will bring more than 500 new SKUs to Big Lots stores across the country. (source)

  • The United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 555, representing grocery store workers in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Wyoming, has endorsed the proposed $24.6 billion merger between Kroger and Albertsons. This is the first known support from a union representing grocery workers and contradicts the national UFCW's opposition. (source)

  • Amazon Fresh has introduced a new feature called Recurring Reservations, allowing customers to schedule weekly grocery pickup and delivery orders up to a week in advance. (source)

  • J Crew has partnered with recycling tech and reverse logistics platform SuperCircle to launch a swimwear takeback program called Second-Life Swim. (source)

🛒 CPG & Consumer Goods

  • Keystone Light (yes that Keystone) and Fishwife have collaborated to create the Fishwife X Keystone Light Smooth Snackle Pack, a specially designed tacklebox that includes an insulated section for keeping beer cold, a compartment for holding a tin of Fishwife smoked salmon, and an Uber Eats gift card. (source)

  • Beyoncé's hair brand, Cécred, has officially launched. The was line developed with hairstylist Neal Farinah and Beyoncé's mother Tina Knowles. (source)

  • Kacey Musgraves has collaborated with Boy Smells to launch a new candle and scent called Deeper Well, inspired by her new song. (source)

  • Haircare brand Mane has partnered with Sephora to launch its collection of hair tools in Sephora stores across the US and Canada. (source)

  • SKU has announced the seven brands selected for its Spring '24 Track. The 12-week program will provide support and connections to help these emerging brands scale and culminate in a Showcase Pitch event in May 2024 (source):

    • Curation Beverage Co.: Disrupting the alcohol space by curating premium beverage experiences with a focus on transparency and quality of ingredients.

    • Heather's Choice: Offering tasty dehydrated meals for the outdoor adventure market with an emphasis on health and quality.

    • I Love Micheladas: Rooted in L.A.'s culinary scene, it has become the city's go-to michelada brand.

    • Kelsi's Kitchen: Producing delicious and better-for-you chocolate using only five core, nutrient-dense ingredients.

    • Ohh! Foods: Creating a line of snacks that are vegan, gluten-free, and free from the top 10 allergens.

    • Sanara: Providing luxurious mind and body care rituals crafted with indigenous Latin American botanicals for the spa and beauty markets.

    • Wellnergy Pets: Offering a unique line of premium preventive care and supportive care products for a wide range of pet ailments.

  • Base Culture has launched a new line of shelf-stable, gluten-free Simply Breads, offering a clean, nutrient-dense, and gluten-free option in the bread aisle. (source)

  • Diageo has launched a range of malt-based RTDs under its Captain Morgan brand in the US. The Captain Morgan Sliced line-up includes four cocktail-inspired malt beverages. (source)

  • Unilever has partnered with Perfect Day to launch a lactose-free chocolate ice cream under the Breyers brand. The dessert uses whey protein made in fermentation tanks by microbes, rather than cows. This collaboration marks the first multinational ice cream and frozen dessert brand to offer a product with whey protein from fermentation. (source)

  • Goodles, the boxed mac and cheese company co-founded by Gal Gadot, has added a gluten-free product to their product line up. (source)

  • BEAM be amazing has partnered with Dole to expand its reach in the health and wellness sector. The collaboration will begin with the launch of a new flavor of BEAM's Super Greens product. (source)

💻 eCommerce

  • Vêtir is a new shopping and styling app aimed at luxury's top-tier clients. The app, launched by former ELLE editor and LVRMagazine Editor-in-Chief Kate Davidson Hudson, provides a platform for customers, stylists, and sales associates to manage and grow fashion portfolios. (source)

  • Shein is planning its second shoppable livestream event to showcase its spring and summer fashions. The three-hour event, called "Shein Live: Front Row," will feature six Shein collections and can be watched on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram. (source)

  • Klarna is launching "Sign in with Klarna," a service that allows consumers to quickly log in to eCommerce sites and apps by providing personal data with their consent. (source)

  • eBay is hosting a one-day auction called "Catch 151" on Pokémon Day, February 27. Collectors and fans will have the opportunity to bid on 151 ultra-rare Pokémon collectibles. (source)

🏭 Supply Chain

  • Flexport has launched the Convoy Platform, a new platform that connects shippers and brokers with a trucking capacity marketplace of small carriers and owner-operators. (source)

  • ShipBob has announced that it is offering Amazon Shipping as a new delivery option for eligible U.S. orders. This move could provide a volume boost for Amazon's emerging delivery service, as ShipBob has shipped over 100 million orders through its fulfillment network. (source)

  • Skechers has partnered with Hai Robotics to launch a new distribution center in Japan. The HaiPick System, operated by autonomous robots, covers a large area and integrates with a cloud-native warehouse management system. (source)

  • Walmart has achieved its goal of cutting 1 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions from its supply chain, known as Project Gigaton, six years ahead of schedule. (source)

💸 Funding news

  • Bluestein Ventures, a leading early-stage VC firm, has announced the closing of its 3rd fund, a $45 million vehicle that includes external investors. Bluestein has already invested in companies such as Factor, Foxtrot, FourKites, and Meati. (source)

  • Society Brands, a tech-enabled consumer products company, has acquired Cleanomic, a DTC sustainable cleaning brand. This acquisition, along with the recent acquisition of Clarifion, brings the total number of companies acquired by Society Brands to 11, representing over $100 million in annual revenue. (source)

  • The Lip Bar has launched Bawse Ventures, a grant program aimed at supporting BIPOC entrepreneurs in the CPG industry. Founders can apply for grants of up to $25,000 along with a year-long mentorship. (source)

  • Havenly has acquired home decor brand The Citizenry, adding it to its portfolio that includes The Inside and Interior Define. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. (source)

  • CrossAmerica Partners and its subsidiary Lehigh Gas Wholesale Services, Inc. have acquired 59 c-stores from Applegreen Midwest LLC and Applegreen Florida for $16.9 million. CrossAmerica Partners operates over 250 convenience stores across 10 states. (source)

  • Sprout Beverage, the startup accelerator arm of InvestBev, has announced its winter 2024 cohort, which includes 11 spirits brands. The program offers education, mentoring, and resources in product strategy, marketing, finance, and leadership development. The cohort competes for a chance to secure $100,000 in investment and a place in the InvestBev brand portfolio. (source)

  • Distill Ventures, backed by Diageo, has invested in two female-owned drinks businesses, Jackson McCrea Whiskey and Ume Plum Liqueur. The startups will receive up to $500,000 in investment and 9 to 12 months of acceleration. (source)

  • Harwood Private Equity has acquired Crest Foods, a provider of dairy stabilizers, co-packaging, and branded and private label dry food manufacturing. (source)

  • Date Better Snacks has been named the winner of Brazi Bites' second annual Latino Entrepreneur Accelerator Program. As the winner, Date Better Snacks will receive a $10,000 business grant, a 12-week mentorship with Brazi Bites' co-founder, and support from various partners. (source)

  • Brewsy, an easy way to make wine at home, has been officially acquired. Congrats Neal!! (source)

  • AddGlow, a community-building software for e-commerce brands, has raised $1.7 million in pre-seed funding. Stellation Capital and Precursor Ventures co-led the round. (source)

    • I’ve seen a demo of the product, it’s sick! Any brand with a strong community should really reach out to them! Happy to make an intro!

🧐 Interesting reads

💡 Data, reports, and trends

😋 Brands and things I’ve tried this week

I got to try a really interesting, and delicious, new bevvie. Chaser! It’s a electrolyte infused soda! It definitely lived up to it’s name of being an excellent chaser

Thanks for reading! If you have any suggestions, feedback, or stories I missed, let me know!

Nate :)

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