Reading List - Week of August 1
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This week in the eCommerce and technology world GrubMarket raised $20 million to expand its online farmers market so that foodies everywhere can place orders for organic, healthy food, and have it delivered straight to their door. Facebook is looking to make friends with advertisers in high growth regions by allowing small businesses in emerging eCommerce markets to use their Pages to sell products for free. Online subscription beauty retailer, Birchbox, just announced they've raised $15 million and is looking to make a comeback after a very tough year.
Spotify will have you grooving all weekend long with its new Release Radar playlist that uses an algorithm to serve you up personalized jams. Magento eCommerce announced it had purchased RJ Metrics earlier this week believing the analytics will help their clients gain a better understanding of their business and customers. Deliveroo, an on-demand restaurant delivery service just raised a Series E round worth $275 million.
GrubMarket raises $20 million to expand its online farmer’s market
Organic grocery, home delivery services in the U.S see annual sales of over $40 billion. While some delivery companies have died out, such as Farmigo, others like Good Eggs are growing lightning fast. Another such example is GrubMarket, as the company has announced they’ve just raised a Series B round of $20 million. CEO Mike Xu says that GrubMarket is perfect for customers who like and want nutritious, mostly organic food from small producers but don’t have the ability to shop at a farmer’s market or other specialty grocers. GrubMarket also enables farms to increase their sales and revenue through the use of marketing and other online tools. They connect farms to shoppers, then charge the farms a small commission on sales which in turn goes towards the cost of delivery. The San Francisco based company recently expanded it’s services to Los Angeles.
Read more about GrubMarket at TechCrunch
Facebook Takes Important First Step Into eCommerce in Emerging Markets
Facebook is looking to engage possible advertisers in regions of high growth by allowing small businesses in emerging markets to sell to customers through Facebook Pages for free. Last year Facebook released a service that allowed select merchants to sell products through paid items, but this service will be free. The social media giant hopes the service will entice retailers to become more dependent on Facebook and that they’ll return later to use Facebook for paid ads.
To read more about the expansion at TechVibes
Subscription service Birchbox raises $15 million
Source: Internet Retailer
Online beauty subscription retailer, Birchbox, has raised $15 million in financing “to bridge the company to profitability,” a company spokeswoman says. Investors have not yet been identified, but the same spokeswoman did have this to say “Birchbox’s investors are very supportive of its ambitious long-term vision, and continue showing their confidence in the business through this round of financing.” While Birchbox declined to comment on when it is expected to once again be profitable, a close source has stated that they expect to turn a profit by the start of 2017, after a very rough year. In January the retailer laid off 50 members of their staff and then again in June, when another 30 workers were let go.
To read more about the company go to Internet Retailer
Spotify’s Latest Algorithmic Playlist Is Full of Your Favorite New Music
Starting today, Spotify released a new hyper-personalized playlist called Release Radar. Every Friday it will offer up two hours of music they think you'll be interested in. Release Radar is a direct offshoot of Discover Weekly, which is a playlist that is released and updated with 30 new tracks every Monday based on algorithms. With over 40 million people using Discover Weekly, it’s become a massive hit. Release Radar is a little different though. The tracks are new, so Spotify has no listening data. However, the company is relying on their vast knowledge of the music itself, coupled with your listening data, to create a playlist they think you’ll love.
To learn more about how the algorithm works go to Wired
Magento Commerce buys RJMetrics
Source: Internet Retailer
Earlier this week Magento announced they had purchased eCommerce analytics RJMetrics. The terms of the deal have not been disclosed. The eCommerce platform says they want to give retailers more tools they can use to target promotions, improve merchandising, and strengthen inventory management. In the next couple of months, Magento plans to incorporate some basic reporting metrics into the core platform so that merchants may examine their customers’ histories, analyze churn rate, and calculate a simple CLV metric right in the platform. CEO Mark Lavelle believes that Magento Analytics will help their clients by providing them with more in-depth information that they cannot get from Google Analytics.
To read more about the Magento Analytics go to Internet Retailer
Food startup Deliveroo raises $275M as Uber eats into its European market
Deliveroo, an on-demand restaurant food delivery service in Europe, has raised $275 mission in a Series E round of funding, putting the company at an estimated worth of $1 billion. The investment was led by new investor Bridgepoint, as well as previous investors DST Global, General Catalyst. They also saw support from Greenoaks Capital. Deliveroo says they plan to use the money to grow its service offerings in new and existing markets. The money has come at just the right time as the competition is really starting to ramp up. Competitors include Uber Eats, Delivery Hero, Just Eat and even Amazon, who have a food delivery project in Europe called Hot Wheels.
To learn more about the delivery service head on over to TechCrunch