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#158 – Apple’s big upset, biometric checkouts, & MrBeast

by | Jan 29, 2024 | Recent Newsletters

Hi Shopifreaks!

I’ve got a quick announcement for you this week before we get started.

Our much anticipated Shopify Apps report is published!

We used Charm’s data and proprietary growth scores to analyze the tech stacks of the top 1,000 fastest-growing Shopify brands in the U.S. to discover which apps they're using from growth-focused categories including:

  • E-mail marketing apps
  • Loyalty and referral apps
  • Subscription apps
  • Affiliate apps
  • Upsell/cross-sell apps
  • Review apps

We then interviewed industry experts to see how their app preferences aligned with the data.

The report offers a unique opportunity to peek behind the scenes of the top performers, offering valuable insights into the tools and strategies that drive their growth.

➡️ Click Here To Download The Report ⬅️

Feel free to use this data in your articles or social posts, although credit is appreciated. You can link back to the report page on either or

If you’d like a quote for your article, hit reply and I’d be happy to answer your questions and/or connect you with the Charm team to learn more about their growth scores.

One other note this week…

Shoutout to Jonathan Kennedy for including me on his list of top newsletters for Shopify Partners to stay in the loop. Thanks for that, Jonathan, and a big welcome to all new subscribers who found me through that post.

And now on to this week’s regularly scheduled content…

In this week's edition I cover:

  • Apple’s big changes to the App Store & payments
  • PayPal’s new checkout system
  • Bold Commerce’s biometric checkout
  • Temu welcomes US & EU sellers
  • Instacart gamifies grocery shopping
  • MrBeast's experiment on X
  • The FTC's probe into big tech and AI
  • Mailerlite’s big blunder
  • Ety's new Gift Mode
  • Layoffs at Microsoft and eBay

All this and more in this week's 158th Edition of Shopifreaks. Thanks for subscribing and sharing!

Stat of the Week 📈

Temu’s traffic grew by 700% in 2023, according to Similarweb. The site reached an average of 92.2M monthly visits, coming in second in growth only to OpenAI, which saw its traffic grow by 2,690% in 2023.

Share this week's stat on X & LinkedIn.

1. Apple forced to compete in its own app ecosystem, so it unlevels the playing field

In compliance of the upcoming Digital Markets Act, Apple is being forced to make some big changes in the EU that could have a major impact on its app ecosystem.

Here’s what’s going down with Apple in the EU:

1) Apple is finally opening the iPhone to third-party app stores in the European Union, but they aren’t making it easy or cheap to compete against their App Store.

For a new third-party app store to be allowed on an iPhone:

  • Developers must provide a €1M “letter of credit” from an A-rated financial institution.
  • Developers will also be required to pay a €0.50 “Core Technology Fee” for each first annual installation of their marketplace app.

2) Apple is now allowing developers to use their own payment service providers within their apps.

In addition, apps in the EU can allow users to purchase digital goods and services on a developer’s external website.

The caveat is that apps that see more than 1M installs per year must pay Apple a 50 euro cent fee for every new installation over that first million, paid once per user each year (including inactive and free users).

3) Apple is now giving users default browser choice.

Safari users in the EU will be presented with a new choice screen when they first open Safari that will allow them to choose a default browser from a list of options.

In addition to the above changes, Apple released more than 600 new APIs, expanded app analytics, and functionality for alternative browser engines, which you can read about in their blog post.

🍎 Apple vs Oranges 🍊

In regards to the first two changes outlined above, basically the choice for app developers in the EU has become whether to pay Apple up to 30% of all revenue derived through their app, or pay Apple €0.50 per install per year to keep their apps on users’ phones — regardless of whether the user is active, inactive, a free user, or a paid user. Given that most freemium apps only have a single-digit percentage of users subscribe to their premium / paid tiers, the latter can get costly quickly.

For a large platform like Spotify, it could make sense to switch to a €0.50 per install model, as they already have an existing user base, and it sure beats paying Apple 30% of their revenue. The savings would most likely outweigh the new costs.

However for a small music streaming startup app, it leaves them in a precarious situation, stuck between a rock and a hard place of giving up 30% of their revenue to Apple or paying €0.50 for inactive users — both which make it difficult to compete against Apple’s own music streaming services.

Are those changes really in the spirit of the Digital Markets Act? Or is Apple simply restructuring their app revenue model in a way that inevitably keeps the cost of doing business in the Apple ecosystem the same (or more) for developers and third-party marketplaces?

The European Commission hasn’t yet decided, and will review Apple’s new rules once enforcement of the DMA goes into effect in March. If regulators feel that something in Apple’s plan violates the law, they could push back.

What are your thoughts? Hit reply and let me know or join the convo on my LinkedIn post.

2. PayPal announces six new innovations at First Look

PayPal CEO Alex Chriss announced six new innovations the company is piloting and bringing to market this year during his First Look keynote last week, which I’ll recap below.

1) Redesigned Checkout – a completely new PayPal checkout experience that speeds up checkout for consumers and helps merchants convert more transactions, as well as integrates passkeys to enable customers to log in with their face or fingerprint.

2) Fastlane by PayPal – a new one click guest checkout experience that doesn't require shoppers to sign in or sign up while browsing. Through their tests with BigCommerce, PayPal found that Fastlane can recognize 70% of guests and accelerate checkout speeds by nearly 40%.

3) Smart Receipts – a dynamic receipt that allows customers to not only track their purchase, but also harnesses AI to predict what they may want to buy next from that merchant. This increases the opportunities for merchants to re-engage directly with their customers via receipts, which almost 45% of PayPal customers open every day.

4) PayPal Advanced Offers Platform – allows merchants to provide relevant, personalized real-time offers to consumers, based on what their customers have previously bought. Merchants will only pay for performance, not impressions or clicks.

5) New PayPal Consumer App – offers shoppers new ways to earn cash back and more reasons to use PayPal. PayPal is also introducing CashPash to their app, which gives customers access to hundreds of personalized cash back offers.

6) Venmo Enhanced Business Profiles – The next evolution of business profiles will add subscribe buttons, profile rankings, and the ability to offer promotions to consumers, offering businesses the ability to drive traffic, generate sales, and grow their business through increased visibility in the Venmo app.

All of these new experiences will begin rolling out in the United States throughout 2024.

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3. Bold Commerce introduces biometric checkout

Not to be outdone by PayPal this week, Bold Commerce also brought a new innovation to its platform.

Its new biometric checkout offering, powered by Wink, lets customers make a purchase using only their face and voice to prefill the information needed to checkout.

Now, instead of having to manually fill out details like login credentials, delivery details, loyalty accounts and payment preferences, retailers can enable shoppers to use their face and voice to pre-fill all the information necessary to complete a purchase on any mobile or desktop device or in-store.

Bold Commerce says that while many consumers currently use biometrics to make purchases, current capabilities are limited to certain devices and to the payment portion of checkout. With shoppers expecting a faster checkout, biometrics can make them less dependent on passwords to access store accounts.

This all sounds pretty cool, as long as they don’t add dark patterns to their checkout flow. Imagine this:

Bold: “Would you not like to complete this purchase? Say yes or no.”

You: “Yes, I mean, no! Wait, which one means I don’t want to buy this?”

Bold: “Success! Your purchase is complete using your stored payment information. Goodbye!”

You: “Wait, cancel! I meant to say that I don’t want to complete the purchase.”

Bold: “Your voice said no, but your face said yes. We know you’ll like this item. Goodbye.”

Everyone’s getting in on the biometric checkout game lately.

Amazon is using your handprint to checkout via its Amazon One technology, available at some Whole Foods stores. Bold Commerce is now using your face and voice with this new release. I’d hate to see which biometric PornHub starts using to confirm your identity…

4. Temu opens its marketplace to US & EU sellers

Temu, which since launching in Sep 2022 has only catered to Chinese sellers, is now opening its platform to US and EU sellers.

US sellers will be welcomed to the platform in March, followed by European sellers soon after.

The news was confirmed by a company spokesperson, who declined to provide additional details, only adding that, “many of the business details are still in the process of being finalized.”

More than 100,000 Chinese sellers populate Temu’s marketplace today, based on Marketplace Pulse research. Currently Temu requires sellers to agree on wholesale pricing and ship goods in bulk to its warehouses in China. Temu then handles listing, marketing, fulfillment, customer service, and pricing.

However in the western markets, new sellers will not ship goods to Temu’s warehouses in China, and the sellers will instead handle fulfillment from their domestic warehouses. Temu will also not manage pricing or marketing, mimicking the Amazon, eBay, and Walmart marketplaces.

That’s unfortunate. Personally I was hoping Temu would extend their fully managed Chinese marketplace model to the US. It would differentiate Temu from every other major marketplace in the US, and effectively cut out the unscrupulous listings and rigamarole that plague Amazon and other 3rd party marketplaces.

However the reason Temu is leaving fulfillment up to the sellers in these markets is because they want to add quick delivery as an option, which currently doesn’t exist on Temu today. Sellers with domestic warehouses are able to offer 1-2 day shipping options, which brings a whole new fast delivery option to the marketplace. Whereas previously the tradeoff for better prices on Temu was slower delivery.

Will Temu’s marketplace resonate with US sellers?

In attempting to do so, it will face the same upbill battle as its predecessors like Wish and AliExpress did when they tried to grow beyond Chinese sellers, both which were largely unsuccessful at it.

Even Shein, which is also trying to extend its marketplace to US sellers, is having trouble doing so, but maybe Temu will be different.

What are your thoughts? To my US & EU merchant and brand owners reading this, would you bring your products to Temu? Hit reply and let me know.

5. Instacart gamifies grocery shopping with its smart carts

Instacart is attempting to gamify grocery shopping through its Caper smart carts, which can display games on its touch screens that encourage customers to buy more, such as spinning a wheel to earn a coupon.

Instacart's VP of the connected stores division said, “Ultimately, where we want to take it is Pokémon GO.”

Starbucks, which lets customers who are part of its loyalty program win prizes, including a lifetime supply of Starbucks drinks, is a source of inspiration for Instacart, McIntosh said.

McIntosh told Grocery Dive that customers spend around 30 minutes in front of the cart's screen during a visit, which he described as “an amazing opportunity” to show them ads, discounts, or other offers as they shop.

Are smart carts the answer to grocery shopping becoming an amazing interactive experience? Or just a dumb gimmick?

What I question about the technology is why it’s necessary to gamify the cart itself? Every shopper already has a connected device in their hands at all times when grocery shopping. At best, build some of these gamification features into the Instacart app and outfit a plastic phone holder on existing shopping carts. (BAM! Just saved you $5,000 per cart Albertsons.)

Plus, grocery stores have enough issues with carts being damaged, wheels locking up, and even cart theft. Not to mention kids spilling food and drinks all over them. Do grocers really want to add an expensive touch screen to the mix?

Brittain Ladd made a great post that questions whether smart carts really are the next big thing, or just Instacart trying to create hype around its $350M acquisition of Caper.

He posed several poignant questions including:

  • What percentage of Instacart’s grocery clients have expressed an interest in the carts?
  • How many Caper Carts are in use today?
  • What retailers use Caper Carts and how many carts does each retailer have?
  • How much additional revenue did the carts generate?
  • How much does it cost a retailer to use a Caper Cart? Are they charged monthly or annually?
  • How much money does Instacart lose on every Caper Cart?
  • What is the ROI for a Caper Cart?

Personally, I get in and out of a grocery store as fast as possible. I’m not looking to interact with a touch screen on my cart or extend my visit any longer by playing games  in the store, but then again, maybe I just don’t get it.

6. MrBeast publishes videos to Twitter and shares his revenue results

At this point, given MrBeast’s relationship with Shopify and the fact that he’s the world’s most popular YouTuber with over 235M subscribers, what he does has become genuine e-commerce news. So let’s dive into some MrBeast news.

Here’s the story of MrBeast publishing his first video on X:

  • At the end of December, MrBeast posted on X that his newest video was out on YouTube, to which one user wrote, “Upload on this platform too,” and Elon Musk replied, “Yeah.”
  • MrBeast hit Elon back with this reply, “My videos cost millions to make and even if they got a billion views on X it wouldn’t fund a fraction of it :/ I’m down though to test stuff once monetization is really cranking!”
  • Flash forward a few weeks into January and MrBeast decided to experiment by uploading his content to X for the first time and pledging to publicly share details of how much revenue the platform pays out for the video.
  • The catch being that he's not debuting his new content on X right away, but instead reuploading a video he first published on YouTube four months ago where he tests a $1 car versus a $100M car.
  • A week later he followed through on his promise and revealed that the revenue created from the weeklong post on X was $263,655.
  • A screenshot of his analytics page shows his video had more than 156M impressions and more than 5M engagements.
  • However MrBeast dismissed the revenue and engagement, calling it a “bit of a facade.” He explained, “Advertisers saw the attention it was getting and bought ads on my video (I think) and thus my revenue per view is prob higher than what you’d experience.”
  • He immediately pledged to give away $250k of the earnings to 10 random people that repost and follow him.

In other MrBeast news… the creator made a surprise debut on the Chinese video service Bilibili on Tuesday, where he quickly got more than 3M views and over 27k likes for a 90 second collage of some of his most viral clips.

“It’s going to be a fun ride,” he said in the video, asking Chinese viewers to tell him what they’d like to see.

MrBeast picked Bilibili for his Chinese online debut because it shares many similarities with YouTube, but he plans to launch on other sites including Douyin, Kuaishou, Weibo, and Xiaohongshu in the coming months.

7. FTC questions big tech’s investments in AI

The US Federal Trade Commission, which regulates competition, is investigating big tech's partnerships with AI companies.

The agency is specifically looking at three separate multi-billion dollar investments including:

  • Microsoft and OpenAI ($13B investment)
  • Amazon and Anthropic ($4B investment)
  • Google and Anthropic ($2B investment)

Lina Khan, the FTC chair, said in a statement, “History shows that new technologies can create new markets and healthy competition. As companies race to develop and monetize AI, we must guard against tactics that foreclose this opportunity. Our study will shed light on whether investments and partnerships pursued by dominant companies risk distorting innovation and undermining fair competition.”

The FTC is seeking information on specific investments or partnerships, including:

  • Agreements between the companies.
  • The strategic rationale behind the deals.
  • The practical implications of specific partnerships.
  • Analysis of the deals competitive impact.
  • Competition for AI inputs and resources.

Why the deals make sense: The partnerships provide generative AI developers access to tech giants’ resources like expensive GPUs and cloud computing to train and run advanced AI models.

Why the deals hurt competition: These startups provide big tech companies a “land grab to secure their position” in market share and the ability to showcase their own products, like in the case of Microsoft and copilots.

The FTC said companies will have 45 days from the date they receive the order to respond.

8. Mailerlite gets hacked, results in $3.3M crypto heist

MailerLite confirmed that hackers gained access to accounts of large Web3 companies including Cointelegraph, Decrypt, WalletConnect, De.Fi, and Token Terminal to carry out phishing email scams that drained an estimated $3.3M from subscribers, according to the Blockchain analytics platform Nansen.

The breach was caused by a hacker conducting a “social engineering attack” on one of MailerLite’s support managers, ultimately gaining access to the internal admin panel.

A total of 70 Mailerlite accounts were impacted by the breach, but the phishing campaign only targeted a handful of crypto-related lists.

Both clients and subscribers data, including full names, email addresses and personal information uploaded to Mailerlite, were compromised.

What infuriates me most about this totally preventable situation is that the words “sorry” or “apology” are nowhere to be found in Mailerlite's statement.

Instead, the company spun this as a learning experience and practically praised themselves for their quick response. (Not quick enough to save subscribers from getting scammed out of $3.3M though.)

Highlights from Mailerlite's blog post include:

➡️ “Today, at approximately 07:52 AM UTC, we identified a security incident involving unauthorized access to our internal admin panel.”

➡️ “They targeted accounts associated with cryptocurrency and initiated unauthorized campaigns from 4 accounts before we intervened and secured our systems.”

➡️ “In response to this incident, we've intensified our security training and are revising our internal processes to prevent similar breaches.”

➡️ “We’ve already notified the primary contacts of all affected accounts less than 8 hours after our initial discovery, providing them with the next steps for securing their accounts.”

➡️ “We are committed to learning from this experience and continuously improving our security measures to protect your data and trust.”

Would it kill them to say they’re sorry to their clients and subscribers who got scammed out of millions of dollars? Apparently so.

There is a lesson to be learned from all this. See my LinkedIn post about why it’s best to limit which platforms are authenticated on your domains to avoid issues like the above.

9. Other e-commerce news of interest

Klarna launched Klarna Plus, a subscription tool that offers users premium benefits and access to exclusive offers. For $7.99/month, users receive waived service fees on the company’s One Time Card, double rewards points, and exclusive discounts at select merchants.

Etsy launched Gift Mode, an AI feature designed to match shoppers with tailored gift ideas based on their specific preferences. The feature is essentially an online quiz that asks who you're shopping for, the occasion, and the recipient's interests, and then generates a series of gift guides.

JCPenney replaced its Sephora shops with JCPenney Beauty sections, a concept the company introduced in 2021 and rolled out to stores in 2023. The company is setting itself apart in the world of beauty with products from diverse founders, which is resonating with TikTokers, who are discovering JCP as an alternative to Sephora and Ulta.

Microsoft is laying off 1,900 employees at Activision Blizzard, Xbox, and ZeniMax this week, accounting for roughly 8% of the overall Microsoft Gaming division. Alongside the layoffs, Blizzard's president Mike Ybarra and chief design officer Allen Adham decided to leave the company after 20 years at Microsoft.

eBay laid off 1,000 employees, or about 9% of its full-time workforce, as part of its changes to position eBay for “long-term, sustainable growth.” In addition to the job cuts, eBay is scaling back the number of contracts it has with its alternate workforce in the coming months. The company filed an 8-K with the SEC revealing up to $110M in costs of restructuring, most of which is expected to be related to severance payments and post-employment benefits.

Gen Z Americans are three times more likely to get caught up in an online scam than boomers (16% and 5%, respectively), according to a Deloitte survey. Compared to older generations, younger generations have reported higher rates of victimization in phishing, identity theft, romance scams, and cyberbullying.

Netflix is taking away its Basic subscription, its cheapest ad-free plan which costs $11.99/month. The company is retiring the plan in countries where ad-supported plans are available, starting with Canada and the UK in the second quarter of this year, leaving subscribers with their $15.49/month option as its cheapest ad-free plan, or the option of downgrading to its $6.99/month ad-supported plan.

Major brands that have no authorized retail relationships with Shein are finding their products for sale on the marketplace anyway via Shein's “gray market,” which consists of name brand items sold by 3rd party sellers unaffiliated with the companies. Technically gray market goods are not illegal, and sellers can advertise the products as “100% authentic,” however, they can interfere with brand equity, reputation, and earnings, which is why many brands take action to curtail distributors who are part of the market.

Flexport is about to lay off 20% of its workforce in the coming weeks, after last year having made 20% reductions in both January and October. (That seems to be their favorite reduction number.) Flexport, which just received a $260M capital infusion from Shopify last week, says that the layoffs will allow the company to regain profitability and build upon its $1B net-cash stockpile, as well as regain its foothold without raising prices for customers.

Google took heat for allowing ads on its platform for keto gummies, which claim to be endorsed by Shark Tank famous entrepreneurs like Mark Cuban and Kevin O'Leary, but are actually not. Check My Ads, an adtech watchdog run by Nandini Jammi, found several different avenues in which Google played a role in perpetuating the scam including through its paid ads, organic search results, analtyics platform, and Adsense.

Twitter has limited searches for “Taylor Swift” after revealing AI images of the celebrity were circulating the platform this week. Twitter's safety account warned users of its zero-tolerance policy around fake nudes, and said that they were actively removing non-consensual nudity images, without mentioning Swift by name.

Speaking of nudes… Meta is launching a new safety tool to block children from receiving and discourage them from sending nude images, including in encrypted chats later this year. It follows criticism from the government and police after Meta started to encrypt Messenger chats by default, which authorities say will make it harder to detect child abuse. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, if the only way our government has to protect young citizens from danger is to invade our privacy, they’re doing it wrong!

MacKenzie Scott is giving away another $10.4B of Jeff Bezos' her money to charity, after trimming her stake in Amazon down to 1.9%. Since the split from Bezos, Scott has donated more than $16.5B to a wide range of charities, saying, “I have a disproportionate amount of money to share.” His money / her money jokes aside, keep it up MacKenzie! I support your endeavours. Alternatively it’d be hilarious if you used your Amazon money to beat Jeff in the space race.

Binny Bansal, the Flipkart co-founder who previously reserved the rights to stay on the board for as long as he preferred when the company sold to Walmart, resigned from the group's board, citing a conflict of interest with his new venture as the reason for the move. Earlier this month I profiled Bansal's launch of OppDoor (story #6), a B2B startup that helps emerging e-commerce brands expand globally.

Meta lost two lawsuits. The first loss was against Bright Data, which Meta claimed breached its terms of use by ingesting user data, but Bright Data successfully argued that it had only accessed publicly accessible information and had not breached any agreement. The second loss was against a small cafe owner in Somersworth, NH, who sued Meta (and represented himself) in small claims court for deleting his Instagram account six years ago without notice or reason. Despite Meta hiring several law firms to defend their case, the cafe owner successfully argued that the company committed a breach of contract and that they were not immune under the Communications Decency Act.

Now Meta might lose another lawsuit. The company has been accused of automatically enrolling Europe-based Facebook users into the ad supported version of the service if they haven't yet chosen between the free and paid subscriptions options.  A spokesperson explained that although users default to the ad supported version, Meta is not processing user data for EU-based accounts that have not yet explicitly chosen between the two options. However its uncertain how long this state of ad / ad-free limbo will persist.

Newegg began selling refurbished electronics through a program called Newegg Refreshed, which promises to offer “top pre-owned products at competitive prices.” The service is live and available in multiple product categories including laptops, gaming desktops, monitors, smartphones, and tablets. Super smart idea, since the customers that buy electronics and computer parts from Newegg would be the same ones who want to sell their old setups. Now they can through the same platform.

The Birthplace of Amazon, ie: the 1,540 bungalow in Bellevue, Washington where Jeff Bezos launched the company in 1994, is on sale for $2.28M, which surprisingly places it in the more “affordable” end of the street. The home last sold in 2019 for $1.5M, up from $620k ten years earlier.

Speaking of Amazon, the company was fined in France for using “excessively intrusive” surveillance systems to keep track of workers. The French Data Protection Authority said that the systems employed by Amazon to keep an eye on workers for various reasons, including to enhance productivity, were a breach of the EU's new privacy rules under GDPR.

Zilla, a Nigeria-based fintech, announced its decision to halt its BNPL services in order to focus on the development of cross-border payment solutions. So in other words, after deciding that the world doesn't need yet another BNPL service, the company has pivoted to developing yet another payment solution. I’m sure that’ll go well.

X launched a new account called @XPayments in anticipation of Elon Musk's planned payment functions, but the account has yet to post anything. Regardless of its inactivity, the existence of the new account sent Dogecoin to the moon (okay, just up 12%) on Saturday, under speculation that Dogecoin could be incorporated into the service (which neither Musk or anyone at X have ever confirmed).

Vroom, an online used car sales platform that was once the top competitor to Carvana, has hit the breaks on its e-commerce business and is winding down its used vehicle dealership to instead focus on operating its vehicle financing business and analytics service for automotive retail. The company said it was unable to raise the necessary capital to fund its e-commerce operations.

Walmart is shuttering its Store No. 8, a flagship store created seven years ago to spur innovation. Walmart Chief Financial Officer John David Rainey said, “We’ve graduated capabilities from this operating approach that are now fully embedded in our organization. The responsibility to shape the future of retail is now shared by all segments.”

ReturnLogic and BigCommerce teamed up to introduce data-driven returns management for BigCommerce merchants. The integration provides merchants with features like automated return workflows and real-time analytics, allowing them to track return trends and identify common issues.

The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia filed a complaint alleging that Google monopolizes key digital advertising technologies that website publishers and advertisers rely on to buy and sell ads. The lawsuit alleges that as a result of this monopoly, Google garners more than 30% of the advertising dollars flowing through its products.

10. Seed rounds, IPOs, & acquisitions

Blueshift, a San Francisco-based startup that taps AI to help brands automate and personalize engagement across various marketing channels and unify and organize customer data from third-party sources to create richer customer profiles, raised $40M in debt financing from Runway Growth Capital. The loan will be used to refinance the company's existing debt, as well as expand sales, marketing, and general opreations.

Krepling, a no-code e-commerce channel management platform that targets mid-market or enterprise merchants, raised $3.3M in a round led by Bull City Venture Partners. The company will use the funds to ramp up hiring, aiming to double its 10 person team this year.

Mondu, a Germany-based B2B BNPL payments provider, raised 30M in debt financing from Vereinigte Volksband Raiffeisenbank, following its €20M investment in the company in Oct 2022. Mondu will use the funds to continue its expansion across Europe and support further development strategies.

Macy's rejected a $5.8B takeover offer on Sunday from Arkhouse Management and Brigade Capital Management, which would've been a 32% premium over its current share price. CEO Jeff Gennette said that the proposal was “not actionable and that it fails to provide compelling value to Macy's shareholders.”

Fantuan, a Vancouver-based Asian food delivery service, acquired Chowbus's delivery business line for an undisclosed amount. Chowbus ,a Chicago-based company, started out as an Asian restaurant delivery service in 2016 before pivoting to provide restaurant management software and POS services.

Genesys, a cloud specialist in AI-powered experiences, entered into an agreement to acquire Radarr Technologies, an AI-based social and digital listening, analytics ,and consumer engagement company. Following the acquisition, which i sexpected to close in Q1 2025, Genesys will use Radarr's social media insights as a source for its 360-degree customer view within Genesys AI.

Fin, a British last mile delivery startup founded by a former Google exec, acquired its rival Urb-It. The acquisition gives Fin access to Urb-It's tech, which it plans to use to bolster its position in London, as well as access to a pool of partners including Zara, Shein, and AliExpress.

Sorfeo, a Mark Cuban backed Amazon aggregator, filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and plans to liquidate. The company's secured claims total $3.84M and unsecured claims are $1.04M, per the filing.

Eco Inc, the crypto payments company behind the self-custody wallet Beamacquired Join, a shopping app that allows users to make purchases with stablecoins at major merchants like Amazon and Shopify. Users acn now spend their Beam wallet balance directly on in-app purchases.

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See you next Monday,


Paul E. Drecksler
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PS: My wife asked me if I wanted to get off the couch and go with her to yoga. I was like, “Namaste.”