These are the things that are giving me life today. I hope they give you the same kind of warm fuzzy autumn-in-Florida feeling.
- Charcuterie from the Boarderie folks. Stunning presentation, amazing meat and cheese boards for entertaining… and they’re members of the local South Florida eCom community (not sponsored).
- Popsters are a snack from the folks at Licorice.com. They are BONKERS good. (This is not sponsored.) Jon Packer and co from Goat Foods are part of our Future Commerce Breakfast Club here in West Palm. If you’re in South Florida, respond to this email and we’ll get you out to the next one.
- Coffee mugs by Second Chance give women in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction meaningful work while working a rehabilitation program. Their Etsy store helps power dozens of jobs for people who need a new lease on life.
- Synthesizer-nerd-chic is what Teenage Engineering must have been going for with their new merch collection and clothing capsule. They have made me want to revisit a capsule wardrobe with a bum bag at the center. (also not sponsored — are you sensing a theme?)
And finally, seeing our Archetypes event and 240-page print journal come to life has been extremely rewarding this week. Our small team of 10 people here at Future Commerce are pouring our heart and soul into this event.
I’d love to have you there with us to celebrate. December 1st at 8PM join us in Miami at the first public day of Art Basel. We’re fusing Art and Commerce together in a way that has never been done before.
And here’s a $50 off coupon for you: FCInsiders50. Register here or reply to this email for more information.
Downsizing. Despite the hubbub over Twitter’s RIF (that’s Reduction in Force for the non-HR-types), Stripe’s own CEO, Patrick Collison, sent an email out this week to employees announcing that the company will be reducing its team by 14%, citing over-hiring as one of the causes. The company seems to be handling departures with more class than most, based on the email sent out, but no layoff is ever easy.
- Our Take: The real question is how Stripe’s current trajectory affects the likes of Shopify. While the eCom giant depends on Stripe for its payment rails, Shopify also took an equity stake in Stripe, Affirm, and six other eCom-centric startups over the past 3 years. Those deals include the likes of Yotpo, and other mature late-stage SaaS businesses whose future IPO hopes are all but dashed for the time-being.
The $350M investment in Stripe has not been re-evaluated in the private markets since Stripe’s all-time-high $100B valuation in 2021. However, given the state of other investments such as Affirm (-83% YTD), the Shopify balance sheet may paint a fairly bleak picture; despite headlines that Shopify clocked a $2B net gain at the Affirm IPO.
That’s a Wrap(ped). It's wrapped season, so get ready for data-driven everything! Etsy-owned musical instrument resale marketplace Reverb has announced its best-selling guitars of the year, and we know many more such lists are coming our way.
More Sights & Sounds. Juan Meisel, the former head of logistics at ButcherBox has invested $2 million in pre-seed funding for DTC startup, Grip. Guaranteed just raised $6.5 million in a seed funding round. And Dropit raised $25 million in Series C funding. Square, Venmo and PayPal are all planning to support Apple’s Tap to Pay on iPhones.
Precious Cargo. Scandinavian travel brand, Db, has created a travel case for your sneakers to keep those Jordans poppin. The Ramverk System is a marriage of the rugged outdoors and Scandinavian minimalism, and uses the most technical and sustainable materials and components out there.
Artificial Intelligence, No Artificial Ingredients. This year, feed your loved ones with recipes inspired by… (*checks notes*)... artificial intelligence? The New York Times recruited an A.I. system to come up with a holiday menu which, upon reviewing the ingredient lists, seems like the flavors make sense together. The recipes are untested, so prepare them for your people at your own risk.
A Frothy Head. Beer collabs are coming in hot this year. Teenage Engeineering just collaborated with Stigberget for an okinawa-style clear lager. Run the Jewels did a beer with Brooklyn Brewery. New Belgium has done merch with Chaco and Burton. Aldi x Brewdog is a thing. And of course Tracksmith collaborated with Mystic Brewery for their Session Saison.
Give the Gift of Excrement. Goop is recommending poop as a great holiday gift in its latest holiday guide — the “finest poop in L.A.” to be exact. This is definitely not the kind of paper poo bag that should be set afire and left on the doorstep of an archnemesis. Nay, this $75 bag of Flamingo Estate Free-Range Composted Manure harvested from at least four animals (AKA some of nature’s most precious gifts) is meant to revitalize garden soil. We’re not knocking the value of a good compost tea for next summer’s tomato crop, it’s just not what we would expect to find waiting for us on Christmas morning.