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Stripe's 20 Yards & Four-Star Retailers

This week’s Dose highlights: Startup Stripe's 20 yards, four-star shopping, and a new vision for online search.

Stripe raises $245M, valued at $20B

Stripe raises $245M, valued at $20B

This week, mobile payment tech company, Stripe, raised $245M. This new funding increased the company's valuation to $20B—up from $9B. This $20B figure places Stripe in the same ranks as other elite startups like Airbnb and Uber. Speaking of Uber, Stripe listed the ride-sharing platform along with several other large companies as new customers on its site this week.

What stood out to us? Stripe may not be a household name, but 84% of U.S. online shoppers made a purchase using the platform last year. The new funding may help with name recognition—Stripe plans to use the capital to finance international expansion and handle larger client accounts.

What we heard? Founder John Collison denying IPO speculation.

New Amazon-4 Star opens in SoHo

New Amazon-4 Star opens in SoHo

This Thursday, Amazon opened Amazon-4 Star in New York City's SoHo neighborhood. The new store will serve as a physical location to sell the ecommerce site's most popular or best-rated merchandise. Inventory will rotate on a weekly basis based on changes in product ratings on the site.

What stood out to us? Compared to Amazon's tested pop-up shops, Amazon-4 Star has a longer-term real estate deal. While Amazon is not new to brick-and-mortar, the new store's permanence strengthens Amazon's place in this space along with the ecommerce giant's line of bookstores, convenience stores, and Whole Foods locations.

What we heard? Grocery stores, drug stores, and QSRs hurting from the popularity of the ecommerce giant's brick-and-mortar stores.

Companies' vision for visual search expands

Companies' vision for visual search

Google Lens. Insta-Shopping. Shop the Look. Visual search has slowly, but surely grown in popularity as an ecommerce option. This week alone, Google announced plans to integrate Google Lens with Google Image Search and Snap is beta-testing a new way to search for products on Amazon using Snapchat. These two giant's aren't alone in announcing new features, Bing and eBay recently released visual search tools as a way to improve the digital shopping experience.

What stood out to us? Even though visual search only amounts to 1B monthly searches, companies have seen significant growth in the space. Pinterest alone observed an increase from 250M to 600M visual searches in a matter of a year.

What we heard? Marketers' excitement for a tool to improve UX.

In the Headlines

  • Another acquisition: Adobe Systems buys marketing automation platform, Marketo, for $4.75B
  • Pat 2.0: Amazon invests in homebuilding start-up, Plant Prefab, making a play in the smart home space
  • Oooh scandalous: Qualcomm accuses Apple of stealing confidential information for rival, Intel
  • The Home Delivery: The Home Depot rolls out express home delivery for 20,000 items to 35 cities across the U.S.

Because we can

Read this if 📖

you're wondering if 90's fashion is in again. Hint: it is.

Teen shopping habits, explained by teens

Listen to this if 🔊

your podcast queue is growing stale.

New Mix: Jeff Tweedy, Allen Tate, Charly Bliss, Bad Moves, More

Heard it through the headline 🍇

"I bet you're wonderin' how I knew / 'Bout your plans to take over the small-business market"

Shopify CEO Says Amazon is Encroaching on Its Turf

New Black Mirror concept 🍷

No way, Rosé. We'll never say no to a free trip to the ice cream museum.

The Existential Void of the Pop-Up 'Experience'

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See you next weekend! ✋

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