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#136 – TikTok Kills Storefront, Shopify Cuts Perks, & DoorDash’s AI Voice Ordering

by | Aug 28, 2023 | Recent Newsletters

Huge week for IPOs and seed rounds! While venture capital has tightened up in the past year and companies have been too scared to go public, Instacart, Klaviyo, and Arm have decided to get the ball rolling again.

I also cover big changes to TikTok's e-commerce business, more cuts at Shopify, and a gloomy outlook for department stores that hopped on the marketplace train last year.

Plus an update to the UPS strike, changes to Amazon same-day shipping fees, and a look at DoorDash's new AI-powered voice ordering assistant for restaurants.

All this and more in this week's 136th Edition of Shopifreaks. Thanks for subscribing and sharing!

“I love Shopifreaks. Keeps me up to date with ecom news, easy to digest, and funny!” – Manny Flores

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Stat of the Week 📈

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway reported $1 trillion of assets for the first time last quarter. That's roughly 3x the assets of Apple, 10x Tesla, and 20x Nvidia's total. – According to Insider

Share this week's stat on X & LinkedIn.

1. TikTok to end Storefront integration

Big news this week from TikTok. Big, big news!

TikTok is sunsetting its Storefront feature, which launched in the U.S. and U.K. in August 2021. The integration will be removed on Sept. 12.

Storefront enabled merchants on Shopify, BigCommerce, Ecwid, Square and other platforms to sync their product catalogs to TikTok. 

The move comes as TikTok looks to bring the shopping experience to its own platform via its TikTok Shop offering.

TikTok wrote on its website, “TikTok Shop is entirely contained within the TikTok app. Product discovery, product details, checkout, and post-payment activity — is powered and performed all within the TikTok App, creating a seamless shopping experience from beginning to end.”

For clarification if you're confused: 

  • TikTok Storefront = display your store's products in a feed on TikTok for users to click on and complete their purchase on your website
  • TikTok Shop = TikTok's internal store where the transaction takes place completely within their app

TikTok wrote that it is discontinuing the feature because it is “committed to building native, engaging, and entertaining shopping experiences that empower you to meaningfully engage with customers and grow your business.”

Moving forward: E-commerce platforms like Shopify, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, etc can still integrate with TikTok — but now the company is pushing those integrations to their TikTok Shop feature instead. 

So for example, Shopify announced an integration with TikTok Shop during its 2023 Summer Editions. And in July, I reported that TikTok invited WooCommerce shop owners in the U.S. to its TikTok Shop program for early access. 

TikTok is continuing to allow store owners to sync their product catalogs and manage the actual orders through their existing Shopify / Woo / BigCommerce backends, but the sales themselves will have to happen within TikTok's app via TikTok Shop moving forward. 

That's fair. Everyone else seems to be doing it. 

Back in June, I reported that Facebook and Instagram began doing the same thing — forcing their checkout experience on merchants who list their products within their internal Shops feature, as opposed to being directed to the merchant's e-commerce website. The change took effect for new sellers earlier this month, and will be required for existing sellers by Aug 2024.

The big change for consumers? Get ready to hand over your payment info to TikTok (if you haven't already). 

I've also got another big TikTok story for you today. Scroll down to Story #2….

2. TikTok suspected to ban external e-commerce links

Here is another big, big, big TikTok story… although the validity of this news is still questionable. 

According to a report from The Information, TikTok is planning to ban outside e-commerce links to sites like Amazon and other retailers and marketplaces.

The report says that the move would be a way for the platform to force people to use TikTok Shop if they want to purchase an item, as I outlined in Story #1.

If TikTok were to implement a ban on outside e-commerce links, it would be taking a page out of Douyin’s playbook (TikTok's Chinese counterpart that is also owned by ByteDance), which banned external e-commerce links to Alibaba’s Taobao in 2020.

TikTok, however, denied the claim. 

Let's, however, imagine it's true for a minute and think about the repercussions: 

  • TikTok Creators, who earn significant revenue through affiliate programs like Amazon Associates, would be pissed and possibly begin focusing their attention on other platforms.
  • Amazon Inspire would be thrilled, and welcome those creators, as would Meta.
  • TikTok Shop wouldn't be able to keep up with the product discovery demand on its platform because it hasn't onboarded enough merchants yet.

Plus, given how many U.S. creators send traffic through LinkTree and other mobile landing page builders, I don't know how TikTok would effectively enforce the ban either way. So I'm going to speculate that these rumors are not true.

However if you have any more information about the validity of The Information's report, please hit reply and let me know.

The Information report also shared that:

  • Consumers in the U.S. are currently spending around $3M-$4M a day on TikTok Shop, up from around $500k-$1M a day in June.
  • TikTok expect this number to exceed $10M by the end of the year.
  • TikTok Shop is more successful in Southeast Asia, where it has been available since 2021.
  • TikTok Shop’s daily GMV is around $50M-$60M in SEA, and TikTok hopes to increase this number to $90M by the end of the year.

3. Shopify cuts success manager perk for 16k Plus merchants

A leaked e-mail revealed that Shopify is about to tell 16k of its Plus merchants, who pay upwards of $2k/ month for the service, that they will no longer have access to success managers, which was one of the key perks of the higher end subscription.

Here's the new breakdown:

❌ Plus merchants making less than $2M in annual sales = no more success managers.

❌ Plus merchants selling between $2M and $10M in annual sales = no more success managers, but will get access to success teams for specific, escalated situations relating to sales.

✅ Plus merchants selling over $10M in annual sales = continued access to success managers, and a kiss on the lips under the mistletoe each Christmas from either Tobias Lütke or Harley Finkelstein (merchant's choice).

Senior Lead AnnMarie Biss to the Plus Support organization wrote in the memo, “The goal is not to take away from the merchant's experience but to transform the Merchant Success craft to make it more efficient, effective, and provide a better merchant experience.” — however I don't see how reducing support in any capacity aligns with that goal.

Shopify's leaked e-mail also warned Support staff that they might receive a higher volume of inquiries due to the changes, but that the company plans to hire additional third-party contractors to help with the potential increase. (Didn't they just let a bunch go?)

What it comes down to is revenue.

Even at $2k/month, Shopify doesn't care much about the subscription revenue. They care about the transaction volume of the merchant, because that's how Shopify makes most of its income (roughly 70%). In other words, since Shopify is taking a cut of each sale, they prioritize the biggest sellers.

It's logical. I get it. However, I don't imagine that these changes will bode well with Shopify Plus merchants who have grown accustomed to having a dedicated success manager on call. 

If, that is, they even use them?

I shared this news on my LinkedIn last week along with my thoughts, and one of the questions that arose was — what percentage of those 16k merchants actually used success managers more than zero times or once?

Shopify hasn't shared these those stats, but it's possible that success managers were an underutilized perk that very few merchants will miss.

Shopify's COO, Kaz Nejatian, chimed into the comments and wrote, “To be very clear without it any equivocation: Shopify Plus merchants will continue to get access to Plus Exclusive Support, 24/7 on priority basis.”

This was in response to my commentary about how subscriptions at a $2k+ price point should get a higher level of support, even if they're at $0 in annual sales.

So now at Shopify there's:

  • Poor Merchant Support
  • Plus Exclusive Support
  • Success Managers for thee, but not for me. 
  • An AI chat bot that keeps harassing me in the Help dashboard.

It gets a little blurry from the outside looking in about what support is included for smaller merchants, what support is exclusive to larger merchants, and what support is disappearing altogether, especially after all the support layoffs in the past year, along with Shopify's push to AI.

And it feels to me like Shopify is still figuring out their new support equilibrium on their end too.

Understandably, support is a costly part of the e-commerce solution for a platform to provide and an area that they look to cut — but it's a very important part of the merchant equation. Some might argue that it's the most important factor when choosing an e-commerce provider.

As a merchant and developer on their platform, I hope that support continues to be a priority at Shopify for years to come.

4. Sharp sales declines for major department stores

Remember the era when every retailer and their brother hopped on the marketplace train?

Remember during the COVID pandemic when major department stores made bold moves towards e-commerce under the assumption that online revenue would remain that high forever?

Remember when department stores got so high on e-commerce that they split off their online presence from their brick-and-mortar business (and others considered doing the same afterwards)?

How's all that working out for them now?

  • Nordstrom Q2 net sales fell 8.2% YoY to $3.7B, while e-commerce, which represents 36% of total sales, fell 12.9%. Despite the declines, the company is pushing forward with its Rack expansion, having opened eight new Rack stores so far this year with plans to open 11 more by the end of the year.
  • Macy's also showed significant declining numbers, with online sales dropping 10% in the most recent quarter, and net sales declining 8% to $5.13B. However it's not just a matter of e-commerce returning to normal post-COVID. Sales were actually 7.5% lower than they were pre-COVID in Q2 of 2019!
  • Neiman Marcus is weighing a possible deal to sell itself to rival Saks Fifth Avenue.
  • However Saks Fifth Avenue, which declined to comment on the rumored acquisition, isn't doing so hot itself either, having reported an 8% decline in GMV in Q1 this year.

I understand the appeal of offering a marketplace — a larger selection for customers, more income for the retailer through seller fees, and less inventory liabilities for the retailer. 

However on the flipside of the coin of running a marketplace comes managing a network of third party sellers, keeping customers happy in regards to fulfillment and returns while simultaneously giving up control of both to merchant partners, and creating a new layer of quality control on products that the retailer no longer has in their hands, but are selling on its site.

It'll be interesting to see in a year if these department store retailers are seeing declines in online sales strictly due to the economy and the changing tide in consumer spending, or if the world of marketplaces has simply become too saturated with not enough consumer demand to go around for everyone. What's your prediction? Hit reply and let me know. 

5. UPS Workers Avert U.S. Strike

The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, which represents more than 340,000 UPS employees, ratified a new labor agreement with UPS, averting a strike that could've caused a major disruption this holiday season. Here's a quick backstory: 

  • The previous 5-year contract ended Aug 1st, 2023
  • UPS workers wanted better pay and working conditions
  • Negotiations went nowhere in April
  • By mid-June, they threatened to go on strike beginning Aug 1st
  • In early July, they resolved many key issues including eliminating a lower-paid category of full-time drivers and requiring A/C in new trucks, but the negotiations broke down over part-time pay.
  • In the final week of July, they reached a tentative agreement
  • 86% of voting members approved the contract
  • The agreement was officially ratified last week

Here's what the new contract will offer

  • Full-time and part-time UPS union workers will get $2.75 more per hour in 2023
  • New part-time hires will start at $21/hour and advance to $23/hour, and then increase $7.50 over the length of the contract
  • New worker protections including in-vehicle air conditioning and cargo ventilation
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day as a full holiday for the first time
  • No forced overtime
  • By the end of the five-year contract, UPS drivers will earn an average of $170k in annual pay and benefits

Teamsters general president Sean M. O'Brien said in a statement that the new contract “raised the bar for pay, benefits, and working conditions in the package delivery industry.”

He went on to say, “This is the template for how workers should be paid and protected nationwide, and nonunion companies like Amazon better pay attention.”

Not everyone feels that the negotiations went far enough. Jose Francisco Negrete, who has been working at UPS in Anaheim, CA for 25 years said the $21 an hour that new part-time hires will earn is “poverty pay” — and I can understand that in California.

A few more notes about the strike / agreement: 

  • UPS moves about 25% of the tens of millions of packages shipped in the U.S. each day.
  • UPS's adjusted net income rose more than 70% from 2019, reaching more than $11B last year.
  • All supplemental agreements were ratified as well, except for the Local 769 LAI supplement which covers 174 members in Florida.
  • Wage increases will keep UPS Teamsters the highest paid delivery drivers in the nation.
  • 7,500 new full-time Teamster jobs will be created at UPS along with the fulfillment of 22,500 positions, establishing more opportunities for part-timers to transition to full-time work.

6. Amazon to charge for same-day delivery in the U.K.

Beginning Sep 18th, Amazon will charge Prime members £1.99 for same-day delivery in the U.K. on orders under £20. Other delivery options will remain free for Prime members.

Amazon announced the change in an e-mail to its Prime users in the U.K., who previously enjoyed free same-day delivery on over 1,000,000 items of all order values.

Non-Prime members will still pay the same £5.99 fee for the same-day delivery service.

Amazon employs a similar structure in the U.S., where same-day deliveries are free for orders over $25, but come with a $2.99 fee under that amount. Non-Prime members pay up to $9.99 for same-day delivery.

Amazon and other retailers have been tightening up their fulfillment, delivery, and return expenditures: 

  • Zalando and H&M have limited free delivery and introduced paid returns.
  • About You introduced a minimum order amount of €30.
  • In March, Amazon raised the minimum threshold for Prime free shipping to $150 from $35 and added charges of $3.95 to $9.95 on orders below the new limit.
  • Amazon began charging a $1 fee in the U.S. to return drop-offs to UPS stores in April
  • Last week I reported that Amazon will begin adding a 2% fulfillment fee for members of its Seller Fulfilled Prime program, which allows merchants to ship their own packages, but still include the Prime badge on their listing.
  • The week prior I reported that Amazon going to begin delivering more products directly in the manufacturer's box, without an Amazon box wrapped around it (which is good for the environment, so I support it). 

The golden era of free delivery, free returns, and rock bottom delivery prices has officially come to an end. 

7. DoorDash launches AI voice ordering

DoorDash is launching an AI-powered voice ordering system for restaurants that will answer all of the calls they receive and allow customers to place orders with no missed calls or wait time.

DoorDash published a 2023 Restaurant Online Ordering Trends Report earlier this year which revealed that one in five customers prefer to order takeout via phone, but up to 50% of customer calls are left unanswered. This new AI system could resolve that issue and more.

Here's what it does: 

  • Couples AI with live agents to ensure that customer calls are answered with no wait
  • Enables restaurant owners to capture their full customer demand.
  • Customers will have a personalized voice ordering experience in multiple languages.
  • The system can attempt to upsell customers by offering “curated recommendations to complement their meal.” (Would you like fries with that?)
  • Live agents will be available to jump in to support customers at any time.
  • Restaurants can integrate the AI phone service with DoorDash Drive, the company's white label solution that powers direct delivery from restaurants.

The AI-powered voice ordering system is only available to select partners at the moment.

It sounds great, but to be honest, as a customer, I'm going to miss calling my favorite Chinese delivery restaurant and having no idea if the woman on the other end of the call understood my order. Receiving that surprise dish that I didn't order was simply part of the fun…

8. Get out of here ChatGPT!

70 of the world's top 1,000 websites have blocked GPTBot, the web crawler that OpenAI revealed two weeks ago that's being used to collect massive amounts of information from the Internet to train ChatGPT. 

Websites now blocking the bot include:

  • Amazon
  • NY Times
  • CNN
  • WikiHow
  • Shutterstock
  • Quora
  • Bloomberg
  • Scribd
  • Reuters
  • Business Insider
  • and more…

OpenAI promised not to crawl websites per their instructions in a decades-old web tool called robot.txt, which is a text file that tells bots whether or not they can crawl or index certain pages.

However robots.txt instructions are merely a request, not a rule. Companies are not legally bound to recognize the restrictions, which simply help search engines like Google determine which pages should and shouldn't be indexed.

Much of what is available on the Internet, particularly text and images, is technically under copyright, but crawlers have historically not asked for permission, licensed, or paid to use any data or information they've extracted.

The only way to avoid them at this point is through robots.txt or by marking the pages as “noindex” in the HTML — neither of which technically restricts the crawlers from scanning or scraping the info, but rather, simply makes a request not to do so. 

In the past several decades, websites have mostly had a positive relationship with crawlers. Sure it's been estimated that over 40% of web traffic derives from bots and crawlers, but for the most part, they've been a welcome addition to the Internet, allowing search engines, price trackers, and other tools to operate at will. 

However AI is changing the dynamic between websites and crawlers, because instead of crawling my site to later send traffic to it, the AI systems are building their models atop my copyrighted content, which they'll later use to bypass my work altogether. 

OpenAI has been under heat recently for trying to hide the fact that it trained ChatGPT on copyrighted content, but authors, publishers, and website owners are getting savvy to the truth.

The big question is — will OpenAI actually abide by the requests? Or just say they are and simply get better at hiding it? And is it already too late?

My guess is that better / modern bot and crawler blocking tools will be making their way to the mainstream very soon.

9. Other e-commerce news of interest

Solana Pay, a decentralized payment protocol built on top of the layer-1 blockchain Solana, integrated its plug-in with Shopify, allowing merchants to use it for payments. USDC, the second-largest stablecoin with a $25.9B market cap, will be the initial payment option for the integration

Alibaba Group Holdings is shifting its focus back to e-commerce in a push to revive earnings, and is looking to leverage content creators and its cheap prices to compete in a now crowded market. The push comes in response to the rise of Douyin and Xiaohongshu, Chinese apps similar to TikTok and Instagram respectively, which have taken advantage of user engagement to branch out into e-commerce and gain momentum among younger consumers. 

Belgian sellers on, a Dutch e-commerce marketplace, have complained about coercive contracts and the abuse of power by the platform, which allegedly asks for information about suppliers and a large revenue share. (Sounds like someone else I know.) A member of the federal parliament has called for a hearing to ensure that a fair and level playing field exists for all sellers. 

Squarespace unveiled its new Squarespace Courses platform, which aims to help entrepreneurs turn their knowledge and expertise into a new income stream. Examples of potential uses include chefs selling online cooking classes, wellness instructors creating meditation videos, and photographers teaching the basics of photography (like Udemy).

Shopify is being sued by DKR Consulting LLC for allegedly copying the ability to allow retailers to sell directly to customers via social media after initially cooperating with the function's patent holder. The patents cover the distribution of a web widget to facilitate online commerce directly from sites such as Facebook and X, according to the filing.

Judge Paul Says: I rule in favor of Shopify on that one. That's way too general of a function to patent in my opinion. That's equivalent to me having a patent on selling at a farmer's market. Where's my royalty on that tomato?! What's your verdict? Hit reply and let me know. 

Apple brought its Tap to Pay standard to the Netherlands. Dutch merchants can now allow their customers to pay for goods and services using their iPhones without the need for a separate external payments device.

Cuba is looking to expand its presence on, where Latin American products are now more widely accepted by Chinese consumers. China is a leading destination for Cuba's goods and services including tourism, sports, rum, coffee, and honey, and now the country hopes to add cosmetics and guayabera shirts to that list.

Meta launched the long awaited web version of Threads, which was previously confined to iPhones and Android phones since its launch in early July., a Slack replacement tool that launched in 2017, must be having the time of their lives from all the folks who instinctively go to the .com instead of where the social media platform is hosted — except for the exorbitant hosting bill they'll probably receive at the end of the month. (I'd send that bill straight to Meta.) I can't help but notice that little ® symbol next to the name Threads though. Hmm…

Meta launched a new search tool within their Ads Library that tracks branded content campaigns, which businesses can use to find posts, stories, videos and reels on Facebook and Instagram that include a Paid Partnership. The features gives advertisers the ability to gain deeper insights into competitors' strategies like their approach, creator-business relationships, and campaign frequency.

The FDA sent letters to Amazon and Walmart over the sale of bogus homeopathic products falsely claiming to be antiviral cures marketed to children, in violation of federal regulations. The FDA identified four products on Amazon that claimed to treat molluscum contagiosum, including Naturasil's “Molluscum Treatment Kit”, which was also sold on Walmart.

Starbucks is experimenting with scanless pay, a new contactless checkout method that leverages a customer's current geolocation to identify them in the drive-through lane via their Starbucks app, so that they don't have to pull out their phone to pay. The company says that the innovation could speed up drive-through times. Sounds good, as long as no-one tries to pay it forward on themselves. 

Amazon filed a lawsuit against a group of online stores that sell pirated DVDs of titles such as “The Rings of Power” and “The Peripheral”, which Amazon doesn't produce or sell DVDs for these Prime Video series. Before going to court, investigators conducted more than twenty test purchases of pirated DVDs, which the Motion Picture Association independently confirmed were pirated. (So next time you pirate something, you can just say you were investigating.)

Amazon, eBay, Meta, and Walmart are under investigation by the House of Energy and Commerce Committee for their alleged failure to stop the sale of recalled and banned goods. The lawsuit focuses on two specific child products: the Fisher-Price Rock ‘n Play sleeper and the Boppy Newborn Lounger, which have been linked to serious health risks, including the deaths of 100 infants.

Only 41% of shoppers in the U.K. think that AI is having a positive impact on their retail experiences, however 70% prefer brands with personalized recommendations, which are often AI-powered. This indicates that most consumers have no idea what's going on behind the scenes when it comes to e-commerce or technology in general.

Remember earlier this month (story #2) when WordPress offered free transfer for anyone who had their domains at Google Domains, in an attempt to intercept customers before moving to Squarespace (who bought Google Domains' portfolio of domains)? Well, Matt Mullenweg shared that so far, 44,000 free transfer have occurred — still a far cry from the one million domains they offered to foot the bill for, but a healthy amount of domains nonetheless.

Klarna announced that it now has more than 100M European users on its platform after achieving a 14% YoY GMV growth in the second quarter in Europe, and a 26% GMV growth in the U.K. Last year Klarna raised $800M in funding after its valuation dropped more than 85%, but the company hasn't slowed down despite the down round. 

Nvidia's CEO Jensen Huang predicted that $1 trillion will be spent in 4 years on upgrading data centers for API, much of which he says will be paid for by the leading cloud providers such as Amazon, Microsoft, Google, and Meta. As of June 30th, the four companies collectively had about $334B in cash and cash equivalents on hand, which makes Huang's prediction a bit aggressive to say the least. Don't spend that projected trillion too quick Huang. Let the checks clear first…

10. Seed rounds, IPOs, & acquisitions

Instacart filed paperwork to go public under the Nasdaq symbol CART. The company revealed net income of $114M, with revenue of $716M in the latest quarter, a 15% increase YoY. Instacart has been profitable for five straight quarters, and PepsiCo has agreed to purchase $175M in a private placement.

Klaviyo also revealed its plans on Friday to go public and list on the NYSE under the symbol KVYO. The company reported net income of $15.2M for the first six months of the year, compared to a net loss of $24.6M a year ago, with revenue of $321M vs about $208M last year. As of the end of 2022, about 77.5% of Klaviyo's annualized recurring revenue was derived from Shopify merchants. Here's a great LinkedIn post by Jeremy Horowitz that dives into Klaviyo's S1.

Arm, a Cambridge, England-based company that designs chips which are licensed by Apple, Qualcomm, and Nvidia, is the third tech company to file for an IPO last week. The company's revenue fell 1% to $2.68B for the fiscal year ending Mar 31, 2023, and its net income for the quarter that ended in June was $105M, less than half of last year's. Not a great direction in regards to numbers, but Arm is certainly capitalizing on the best time in a while to IPO as a chip company.

Shein is acquiring a one-third interest in Sparc Group, owner of Forever 21, as part of a new partnership agreement between the two companies. The partnership will expand Forever 21's reach by enhancing its brand distribution through Shein's online platform, while conversely allowing Shein to bring its products into Forever 21's physical stores across the U.S.

StoreConnect, an e-commerce AppExchange package for Salesforce that provides a single customer view of all transactions done through a merchant's store, raised $9M in a round led by Bellini Capital. The funds will be used to hire a sales team and expand its partner network, including its Salesforce solution integration partners. 

Ramp, a NY-based corporate card and expense automation platform, raised $300M at a $5.8B valuation, marking a 28% drop from its previous valuation, in a round led by Thrive Capital, Sands Capital, and other existing investors. The company, which currently services 15k customers, will use the funds for product development and hiring.

Pi-xcels, a Singapore-based company that offers a platform for powering paperless receipts via NFC-enabled devices without the need for apps, QR codes, or personal information sharing, raised $1.7M in a round led by Wavemaker Partners. Pi-xcels' tech was first launched in collaboration with a convenience store in Indonesia, and the company has since partnered with financial and payment entities in Spain, France, Japan, and Singapore, instead of directly engaging with retailers.

Active Ants, a Dutch fulfillment company, has been fully acquired by Bpost, a Belgian postal company. The acquisition was announced in 2018, but management remained in the hands of Active Ants, however now the company has sold its remaining stake to Bpost, who will take over management.

Hugging Face, an open-source AI model repository that acts like GitHub for machine learning and other AI models, codes, and datasets, raised $235M in a Series D round which included Google, Amazon, AMD, Intel, IMB, Nvidia, and Salesforce, at a $4.5B valuation. The company plans to use the funds to grow their team of currently 170 employees and invest in more open source AI and platform building. 

Reliance Retail, India's largest retail chain, secured a $1B investment from Qatar's sovereign wealth fund, who will secure a 0.99% stake in the company, valuing it at $100B. Reliance Retail operates 18,500 stores and was last valued at $62.4B in 2020, when it raised over $6B from investors. The company is considering going public.

1WorldSync, a Chicago-based provider of omnichannel product content solutions, acquired PowerReviews, another Chicago-based company that helps over 1,000 brands and retailers collect and syndicate ratings, reviews, Q&As, videos, and other UGC, for an undisclosed amount. In May, I reported that 1WorldSync acquired atrify, a subsidiary of Europe's largest GS1 certified product content technology.

Dipp, a platform that automates marketing, sales, and design workflows and allows marketing and design teams to collaborate more effectively, raised $1.5M in a round led by SparkLabs Taiwan, Palm Drive Capital, and Tezign. The company will use the funds to launch generative AI-powered features that help address gaps between marketing and design departments.

Beamer, a no-code platform to build tools for measuring and monitoring product engagement, raised $20M from Camber Partners in their first outside round of funding. The funds will be put towards building additional product lines targeted at product managers and marketers and driving the growth of their existing solutions.

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See you next Monday,


Paul E. Drecksler
[email protected]
LinkedIn | Reddit

PS: I knew a group of guys who thought they were really exceptional at statistics, but all together, they turned out to be average.