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#181 – TikTok Shop’s £1Million Club, Facebook Sponsored Notifications, & the Neiman Marcus acquisition

by | Jul 8, 2024 | Recent Newsletters

Hi Shopifreaks!

I hope you had a Happy 4th of July and took a nice long weekend — even if you aren't in the USA!

“It's Independence Day somewhere,” said folks around the world taking a 5-day weekend at the beach. LOL

Before we get started today, I'd like to share my most recent What's Next Interviews, where I feature founders of notable startups in our space:

Thank you to everyone who has participated in my interview series. If your e-commerce tech startup would like to be featured, fill out this short interest form and I'll be in touch.

And now onto this week's edition of Shopifreaks where I cover:

  • Where most of Shopify's revenue comes from
  • Saks Fifth Avenue, Amazon, & Salesforce acquire Neiman Marcus
  • TikTok Shop's new £1Million Club
  • Sponsored Notification Ads on Facebook
  • Automatic positive seller feedback on eBay
  • New features for Wix app developers
  • EU says no to Meta's pay-for-privacy model
  • A brand new social app going viral
  • Happy birthday to Amazon and Threads
  • The EU considers scrapping its de minimis rule
  • Target says goodbye to checks
  • Brazil blocks Meta's AI training

All this and more in this week's 181st Edition of Shopifreaks. Thanks for subscribing and sharing!

Stat of the Week

Shopify’s “Merchant solutions” — almost entirely Shopify Payments — produced roughly 70% of revenue in Q1 and 56% of gross profit. Over 70% of 2023 revenue came from the U.S. (66%) and Canada (5%). — According to PracticalEcommerce

Shopify Revenue

1. Saks Fifth Avenue, Amazon, & Salesforce buy Neiman Marcus for $2.65B

HBC, the parent company of Saks Fifth Avenue, entered into a definitive agreement to acquire luxury competitor Neiman Marcus Group for $2.65B, funded with a combination of equity capital and debt facilities from investors including Amazon, Salesforce, Rhône Capital and Insight Partners.

When the deal closes: 

  • HBC will establish “Saks Global,” a combination of luxury retail brands and real estate assets including Saks Fifth Avenue, Saks OFF 5th, Neiman Marcus, and Bergdorf Goodman.
  • Each company will continue to operate under their own respective brands.
  • Saks Global will also include HBC’s U.S. real estate assets and Neiman Marcus Group’s real estate assets, collectively valued at $7B.
  • Current CEO Marc Metrick will become CEO of Saks Global.
  • The combined company would have about $10B in annual sales.
  • Amazon will be an investor in and work with Saks Global to innovate on behalf of customers and brand partners.
  • Salesforce will also become an investor at closing and will assist with the adoption of AI (which Salesforce can't get enough of).
  • There are 39 Saks Fifth Avenue stores, 95 Saks Off 5th discount stores, and 36 Neiman Marcus department stores, with no current plans to close any stores once the deal is completed.
  • HBC’s Canadian business will be recapitalized as a standalone entity with significantly reduced leverage and enhanced liquidity.
  • HBC will continue to wholly own its $2B Canadian retail and real estate assets, including Hudson’s Bay.

Amazon has tried in the past to enter the luxury retail market, but leading brands owned by LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton said that Amazon's business model does not align with their brand values and consistently turned the company down. As a result, LVMH, owned by Bernard Arnault, the world's 3rd richest person, sells exclusively through its stores, its own website, and select retailers like Neiman Marcus, which Amazon now owns a piece of. 

An Amazon spokesperson said, “I told you we'd get you Bernie! All roads lead to Amazon, b*#ch!” 

Okay, well, Amazon didn't actually say that obviously, but I'm sure executives at the company are thinking it. 

The acquisition and investment by Amazon brings into question whether LVMH will continue its retail partnership with Neiman Marcus, or focus exclusively on other non-Amazon owned retailers moving forward. It also makes me wonder whether we'll start seeing luxury brands currently sold at Neiman Marcus appear next to products in Amazon's new discount Temu-competitor shop that I covered last week (story #1).

The merger is likely to face scrutiny from federal regulators, who've recently moved to block several high-profile deals between market leaders such as Kroger and Albertsons, Tapestry and Capri, and most recently Tempur Sealy and Mattress Firm (more on this today in section 10).

2. TikTok Shop launches £1Million Club

TikTok Shop launched its new £1Million Club to help UK merchants hit £1M in revenue on its platform through a series of special incentives and support at no extra cost.

‘The £1Million Club' plan brings five benefits to new merchants:

  1. Up to 90 days 0% commission free sales.
  2. Free storage and fulfillment through Fulfilled by TikTok.
  3. Seller support priority service.
  4. Dedicated training for merchants to help their products get more exposure and attention through campaigns, creator, content and traffic support.
  5. Enhanced marketing support to accurately reach target consumer groups.

Jan Wilk, Head of Operations at TikTok Shop UK, said, “Through launching our new ‘£1Million Club' plan, we hope this package of e-commerce solutions and resource support will help UK businesses to grow rapidly by putting their products in front of new audiences. There really is no better time to launch your business on TikTok Shop with 0% fees and our unparalleled support to help grow members of TikTok Shop's £1Million Club.'”

The move follows make-up artist Mitchell Halliday, founder of Made by Mitchell, becoming the first ever brand in the UK to hit £1M in sales in one day on TikTok Shop during a 12-hour live marathon that saw one product sell every single second. 

UK merchants can register their interest in joining The £1Million Club here.

3. Facebook “Sponsored Notification” ads headed your way

Meta is testing a new “Sponsored Notification” ad placement that delivers native-looking notifications directly to users' notifications tabs. 

Rob Pegoraro of PC Mag reported seeing notifications like:

  • Wealthfront shared: “You want to get more from your money. We're here to make it happen with multiple ways to save and i…”
  • Datadog Content shared: “Learn about the top 5 ways IT leaders can optimize spend.”
  • Los Angeles Rams shared: “Enjoy watching the Rams take on the NFL's best in a luxury suite! Rent yours for the 2024…”
  • Prospect Bacon shared: “Most Solar companies see upwards of 200+ solar leads and 20+ appointments per w…”

He wrote that all of the notification ads had a few things in common: 

  • The menu text included an option to hide that advertiser, but not an option to block all sponsored notifications.
  • The ads didn't appear to be very personalized, as Rob doesn't work in IT or own a solar panel installation company.
  • The ads so far only appeared on mobile, and not within his iPad app or in Facebook's desktop website.
  • None of the sponsored notifications appear in his notification history.

Meta confirmed that there are doing a small-scale test of this new ad placement, but did not provide any other details.

Last month I reported (story #8) that Instagram began testing a new feature called “Ad Breaks,” which are unskippable ads that interrupt the user's browsing and requires them to view an advertisement for at least 3-5 seconds before they can continue scrolling the feed.

I wrote at the time, “Who's horrible idea was that? LOL. Instagram might as well just say, ‘Use TikTok instead.'”

So with today's news about Facebook Sponsored Notifications, it seems that Meta is actively hunting for ways to bring more interruptive forms of advertising to its platforms, perhaps as part of a long-term strategy to give users more incentive to subscribe to their premium ad-free experience (which is currently only available in the EU). 

Apparently having every 5th post in your News Feed be a sponsored post, two ads on the sidebar, story ads, video ads, Messenger ads (did I miss any?) aren't enough, and Meta is looking to shove an ad down your throat every direction you look. 

Then again, it could just be a test that goes nowhere. If you recall, Facebook launched Sponsored Messages in 2016, but recently sunset the feature. So, I guess, a test that could last 8 years?

Are Sponsored Notifications a good idea for advertisers? Or just a way to piss off Facebook users and create ill will towards your brand? Hit reply and share your thoughts or join the convo on my LinkedIn post.

4. eBay launches automatic positive feedback for sellers

eBay launched a new pilot feature in the UK that automatically leaves sellers a positive feedback rating if the buyer hasn't left feedback within 7 days of delivery, hasn't reported an issue with their transactions, and if the seller has a feedback score of 10 or less.

A seller commented on eBay's discussion board that they noticed two unusual feedback comments left for a UK seller, both which read, “This seller successfully completed an order.” Next to the comment was a label that read, “eBay automated feedback.”

The eBay UK help page explained:

“We do this to provide more information to eBay users and help them buy and sell with confidence. Automated feedback from eBay will remain visible unless there are signals that the buyer's experience was less than positive e.g. the buyer opened a return, item wasn't received, or the order was canceled. Buyers can still leave feedback about their experience which replaces any automated feedback already left relating to the transaction.”

Daniel Sodkiewicz of GeekSeller wrote, “As much as I love the idea of helping sellers and assisting them, I feel that automatic reviews might be a bit too much. It reminds me of websites that give companies four or five stars by default, even if there are no reviews yet.”

However I disagree and think it's an interesting idea. I feel that in the majority of cases — the absence of feedback is positive feedback. People are quick to leave a negative seller review if there's a problem but apathetic to leave a positive review if the status quo is a satisfactory experience, which should be the majority of the time on Marketplace platforms like this.

What are your thoughts? Is automated feedback a positive or negative thing for buyers and sellers? Hit reply and let me know or join the convo on Daniel's LinkedIn post.

5. Wix announces new features for app developers

Wix announced new features for developers to build apps more efficiently within its ecosystem at DevStudio Con, its annual developers conference held in Bangalore, India this year.

Here's what's new for Wix developers: 

  • Wix Command-line interface (CLI) – supports a streamlined development process with TypeScript and React on the front-end and Node.js powering the back-end logic.
  • Wix Design System – include reusable components and Figma kits and helps ensure that apps appear native to Wix, just like those developed by Wix's in-house team.
  • Wix Pattern – a library that allows for rapid development of admin screens with just a few lines of code.
  • Wix Blocks – pre-designed templates tailored to different use cases so that developers don't have to start from scratch.
  • Expanded Functionality – developers can now create plugins that seamlessly integrate with Wix's business apps including Wix Stores and Wix Bookings, without building an entire logic framework from scratch.
  • Wix Choice – a new Wix App certification program that rewards high-quality apps with a certified badge.

Shahar Talmi, GM Developer Platform at Wix, said, “We are continuing to open the Wix no-code and low-code platform with reusable, customizable apps and AI tools, all while providing more revenue opportunities. We aim to build the best solution for agencies and developers by delivering a platform that offers a wide range of out-of-the-box business functionality and welcome the addition of custom functionalities and apps to break boundaries within the Wix ecosystem.”

Shots fired at Shopify! 

Shopify President Harley Finkelstein recently shared that the Shopify App Store now boasts over 12,000 apps, whereas Wix's App Market sits around 800 apps.

It sounds like Wix wants to attract some of those Shopify app developers to its platform, which is a timely move. Shopify app developers are actively looking for ways to diversify their revenue streams, as to not have all their eggs in Shopify's basket. 

Whatever Wix can do to attract these developers to their platform (as opposed to diversifying over to BigCommerce or Magento) — the better. 

6. EU says that Meta's pay-for-privacy model won't cut it

EU regulators made a preliminary finding that Meta violates the Digital Markets Act by requiring Facebook and Instagram users to choose between accepting personalized ad targeting or paying subscription fees for ad-free versions of the services. If Meta is ultimately found to be noncompliant, it could face fines of up to 10% of its global revenue — which was $134B in 2023.

Now you might be wondering: Wait, isn't it normal for tech companies to offer ad-free premium memberships? Doesn't Spotify, Hulu, and practically every other streaming service offer an ad-supported and ad-free experience to choose between?

Yes, you would be correct, but here's the difference: The EU's issue isn't that Meta offers a paid ad-free experience. The issue is that paying is the only way to opt-out of having Meta track you across the web, create a persona based on your browsing history and platform engagement, and deliver personalized advertisements. The Digital Markets Act requires that ALL users be able to opt-out of this type of tracking, whether on a free or paid plan. 

That doesn't mean that free users can opt-out of receiving ads entirely. It just means that they have the option of sharing their data to receive personalized ads (like the kind that track you around the web) or simply receiving general ads based on their demographics. 

The commission wrote that Meta's model “does not allow users to exercise their right to freely consent to the combination of their personal data. Users who do not consent should still get access to an equivalent service which uses less of their personal data, in this case for the personalization of advertising.”

Meta contends that its pay-for-privacy model complies with the Digital Markets Act and “follows the direction of the highest court in Europe” following a June 2023 decision by the European Court of Justice. However despite last year's ruling, privacy officials at the European Data Protection board recently cast doubt on Meta's approach saying that to either consent to behavioral advertising or pay for service “should not be the default way forward for controllers.”

Meta now has a chance to respond to the preliminary findings, and the commission will wrap up its investigation by March 2025.

7. There's no place like noplace for Gen Z

A new social media app called noplace has surged to the top of the App Store as it launched out of invite-only mode on Wednesday. The app had recently gone viral because of its colorful, customizable profiles that allow people to share what they're doing, listening to, watching, or reading — which reminded older users of Myspace back in the day. 

Here what you should know about nospace: 

  • It's currently a text-only platform. No pics or videos.
  • Users are meant to share what they're currently doing, not what they've already done.
  • There are two feeds: one with your friends and another global feed from everyone in the app.
  • Both feeds are in reverse chronological order.
  • Its algorithms don't edit the feed for you, but rather use AI to offer summaries of what you missed.
  • There are no private profiles.
  • Profiles feature “stars” which are interests or topics that the user cares about. Adding stars makes your profile discoverable to others.
  • There is a Top 10 Friends section, reminiscent of Myspace's Top 8
  • Users younger than 18 receive a moderated feed.
  • noplace is available on iOS and read-only mode on the web.
  • The company has raised $19M at a $75M valuation.
  • There are currently no monetization plans underway.

noplace's founder and CEO Tiffany Zhong told TechCrunch, “I think that part of the magical, fun part of the internet is gone now. Everything is very uniform.”

She said she's always loved social, but that social media doesn't feel social anymore. “Everything is just media. It feels very disconnected.”

See you on noplace! Just kidding, I'm an Android user so it's not available to me yet. But you can add me on LinkedIn.

8. Happy birthday Amazon & Threads

Amazon turned 30 a few days ago on July 5th, first launched in 1994 as an online bookstore in Jeff Bezos' garage to later become one of the few companies on Earth worth more than $2 trillion.

It only took 4 years for Amazon to become the largest online retailer in the world after expanding its offerings from exclusively books to other goods, such as electronics, toys and appliances. By the year 2000, Amazon had amassed 17M customers and its valuation skyrocketed to 50 times its IPO value. Jeff Bezos was even named the 1999 Person of the Year by Time Magazine, who labelled him the “king of cybercommerce”.

But Nasdaq peaked shortly after on March 10, 2000 and the dot-com crash hit Amazon hard (as well as every other tech company at the time). Within two years, Amazon lost more than 90% of its market cap.

However even if you had bought in at Amazon's peak in Dec 1999, you still would have 37X'd your money had you have held since then — which is pretty amazing returns given that if you had invested the same amount into a Nasdaq composite at the time, you would've only 3.5X'd your investment since then. I missed out on all these incredible gains because I was 15 years old at the time and only made like $5.25 an hour working at Planet Smoothie. Oops!

Meanwhile Threads turned 1 years old last week on the same day, first launched in 2023 as an answer to what Twitter had become. The app initially saw a massive spike in new users at launch, mainly due to interest in how it launched as a spinoff on Instagram, but the usage quickly dropped from above 100M monthly active users to below 50M by August 2023. 

Since then the app has slowly and steadily risen in popularity, reaching 150M active users in April 2024 and subsequently 175M users on its one year birthday, according to Mark Zuckerberg. 

Threads still has a ways to go to catch up to X. According to Elon Musk, X boasted 600M monthly active users as of May 2024, about half of which use the platform daily. 

Not bad though for a one year old app though!

9. Other e-commerce news of interest

The European Commission is considering scrapping its current €150 threshold under which items can be bought duty free, particularly targeting Temu, AliExpress, and Shein, according to the Financial Times. The commission already proposed scrapping the duty threshold last year, but could now seek to speed up the change to counter the surge of cheap imports. E-commerce imports have more than doubled in the region during the past year.

Rocksbox, a subscription jewelry rental business that charges member $21/month to send three pieces of jewelry that they could rent, swap, purchase, or return, is dropping its subscription rental service and rebranding as a traditional jewelry e-commerce website. Consumers can now purchase new and pre-owned designer jewelry products on the company's online shop.

Tiptop, a startup that offers cash for electronics, launched an embedded trade-in service that provides instant credit for over 50,000 items at checkout on stores powered by Shopify, Magento, and Salesforce, with BigCommerce and other e-commerce platforms coming soon. Tiptop runs the entire program for merchants including handling the trade-in, payment, shipping, and logistics. 

Attorneys general in 30 states and the District of Columbia are urging a federal appeals court to rule that Shopify, which is headquartered in Canada and has two U.S. divisions based on Delaware, can be sued in California over alleged privacy violations stemming back to a 2021 class-action complaint that the company collected users personal data, created a profile of customers, and shared those profiles with other merchants, violating a California wiretap law. The attorneys argue that not being able to sue Shopify in California could potentially “immunize these companies from ever facing enforcement actions from state attorneys general seeking to protect their states' citizens.”

Amazon falsely flagged items like sporting goods, shoes, toys, and clothing as “Seeds & Plants,” causing sellers' listings to become deactivated. Amazon said that it is actively working on the issue, but in the meantime, many seller listings that were falsely flagged still remain deactivated. 

Target will stop accepting personal checks at its stores nationwide later this month due to extremely low volumes, according to the retailers. However customers will still be able to mail checks to make payments on their Target Circle Card credit balance. “This is an outrage!” said little old ladies across the country.

Amazon is bricking its Astro for Business robots on September 25th, which it first released eight months ago as a security device for SMBs for $2,350, to instead focus on the Astro for Home market. Amazon informed customers that their personal data will be deleted from the device and that any patrol of investigation videos recorded by the robot will be available in their Ring app until their storage time expires or subscription ends. All business customers will receive a full refund + a $300 credit “to help support a replacement solution for your workplace.”

Klarna CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski shared on a podcast episode of “The Logan Bartlett Show” his philosophy of raising younger employees to higher positions, why it's important to promote internal talent, and how the promotions have worked out well for the company. Siemiatkowski, who became a CEO at just 23, said that he thinks it's “critical” to allow younger employees to progress with the company — at least for a while, before he replaces them all with AI chatbots. 

Running Tide, a carbon removal startup that signed 25 customers including Microsoft, Shopify, and Stripe, is shutting down after failing to secure more financial backing. The announcement came just three months after the company touted a successful trial that sequestered 21,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide in biomass sunk deep in the Icelandic ocean, while giving offset credits to its clients for that work. CEO Martin Odlin wrote on LinkedIn, The problem is the voluntary carbon market is voluntary, and there simply isn't the demand needed to support large-scale carbon removal.”

Shoprite, Africa's largest supermarket retailer, launched a new B2B e-commerce platform for retailers in South Africa, marking its first venture into e-commerce. Bulk-buying customers can now browse and purchase a wide range of products through a fully automated online shopping system, with free delivery within a 50km radius. 

X is removing engagement buttons from posts such as the repost, like, and reply buttons, and instead turning the actions into left or right swipes, as discovered by researcher Aaron Perris of MacRumors and since confirmed by Elon Musk. Moving forward, the only viewable metric on a post in the timeline will be the view count, which is moving to the upper right hand corner of the post. 

Half of e-commerce scams in Singapore last year happened on Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, and the government doesn't feel that Meta is doing enough to curb scams on its platforms. The Ministry of Home Affairs has asked Meta and other service providers to implement user verification requirements and said that, “If the number of e-commerce scams reported on Marketplace does not drop significnicalty, MHA will require Facebook to verify the identity of al Marketplace sellers by March 2025.” Personally, I wish Facebook verified ALL sellers globally!

Klarna partnered with Adobe Commerce to enable merchants to easily implement its BNPL payment options. This adds Adobe to the list of e-commerce platforms that partner with Klarna including Shopify, Stripe, PrestaShop, Volusion, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, and more. Klarna was so thrilled about the late-bloomer partnership that it published a 171 word press release about it. LOL. 

21% of shoppers in the UK begin their search for products on social media, but only 7% finalize their orders through the channel. Most consumers surveyed said they finalize their purchase on a retailer's website or app, according to a report by Capterra. Consumers in the country that use social media platforms to shop most often do so on Instagram (69%), Facebook (54%) and TikTok (50%).

Mollie, a European fintech that offers payments and money management services to more than 200k businesses in Europe, partnered with Riverty, a BNPL provider, to offer 30 day invoicing to its customers. With the solution, Mollie customers in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, and Austria can offer users the option to pay up to 30 days later with Riverty handling the payment selection, invoice acquisition, payment reminders, and debt collection.

South Korea's Fair Trade Commission launched formal proceedings to sanction AliExpress for alleged violations of e-commerce laws in the country, including failing to report its basic business information to the government. The FTC is also looking into Temu and Shein for similar potential violations. 

Brazil blocked Meta from training its AI models on Brazilian personal data, citing the risks of serious damage to the fundamental rights of users in the country. The decision follows an update to Meta's privacy policy that grants Meta permission to use public Facebook, Messenger, and Instagram data from Brazil for its AI training. The country's data protection agency gave Meta five working days to comply with the order or face daily fines of around $9,000, to which Meta giggled.

Microsoft closed all of its physical shops in mainland China, leaving the sale of its hardware products to partners and online sellers in the country, including its own website. It's speculated that declining interest in Surface products and insufficient profit were responsible for the closures.

Multiple electric Rivian delivery vans caught fire at an Amazon fulfillment center in Houston, Texas last week, leaving authorities unclear how or why the vans caught fire. Crews struggled to extinguish the blaze, which is typical when EV batteries catch fire due to chemicals inside the battery degrading in an exothermic reaction that release more heat and subsequently sustains the burn. No injuries occurred as a result of the fire. 

10. Seed rounds, IPOs, & acquisitions

Heymax, a Singapore-based startup that helps users earn free vacations using rewards points, raised $2.6M in a round led by January Capital. The startup, which was founded in 2023 by four ex-Meta engineers, allows users to earn Max Miles through purchases from over 500 businesses, which they can convert into miles and points at 25 airline and hotel partners.

Vortex IQ, an AI automation platform for e-commerce, raised $1M in a round led by Sure Valley Ventures, which it will use to expand its market presence in the US and Europe, as well as hire additional AI specialists (if they can find any). The company has doubled its customer base over the past six months and formed strategic partnerships with BigCommerce and Adobe.

GLS, a parcel and freight delivery services provider serving Europe and North America, acquired iLogistic, a Hungarian e-commerce fulfillment company specializing in logistics service like pick and pack, inventory management, and returns, for an undisclosed amount. iLogistic has been a partner of GLS prior to the acquisition. 

ShipCalm, an e-commerce operations platform and third-party logistics provider, acquired River Source Logistics, an e-commerce prep and fulfillment company, for an undisclosed amount. The move allows ShipCalm to significantly enhance its third-party logistics offering with reduced shipping costs and increased scale, while more than doubling its customer base. 

Cocktail Courier, a US-based online retailer that sells and ships ready-made cocktail kits, acquired Thirstie, an e-commerce and data solutions company for beverage and alcohol brands, for an undisclosed amount. Cocktail Courier said that the deal will enable the combined entity to offer its merchant partners bottles and online-exclusive products like cocktail kits to consumers through their sites. 

Ascend Money, the fintech arm of Thailand's Charoen Pokphand Group that claims to be Thailand's largest digital financial solutions firm, raised $195M in a round led by MUFG Bank. The company serves over 30M users in Thailand and plans to use the funds to provide financial services to underserved consumers and SMEs in the country. In 2021, Ascend Money became Thailand’s first fintech unicorn after raising $150M at a $1.5B valuation.

Antom, a global merchant payment service provider owned by Ant International with a presence in over 150 markets, acquired MultiSafepay, an Amsterdam-based payment service provider. Through the merger, MultiSafepay will leverage Antom's technology and digital capabilities to further expand its product offerings and merchant coverage in the region.

Oasis, a South Korean grocery delivery platform, announced its plans to acquire 11Street Co, the country's leading e-commerce operator. If the deal goes through, Oasis will increase its customer base and directly deliver Korean groceries to overseas markets through the existing partnership between Amazon and 11Street.

The FTC voted to block Tempur Sealy's $4B acquisition of the Mattress Firm. Henry Liu, director of the FTC's Bureau of Competition, said, “Through emails, presentations, and other deal documents, Tempur Sealy has made it abundantly clear that its acquisition of Mattress Firm is intended to kneecap competitors and dominate the market. This deal isn't about creating efficiencies; it's about ripping the competition, which would raise prices on an essential good and could lead to layoffs for good paying American manufacturing jobs in nearly a dozen cities.”

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See you next Monday,


Paul E. Drecksler
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PS: What kind of shoes do ninjas wear? Sneakers!