R|T: The Retail Times – Shopify wants to give you an AI Sidekick

Sampler founder and CEO Marie Chevrier standing in front of product samples her company helps brands distribute.
Sampler founder and CEO Marie Chevrier.
Plus: Sampler acquires Admass's tech to integrate UGC and AI into platform.

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Sampler acquires AdMass’s tech, founders to add AI, user-generated content to its product sampling platform (BETAKIT)

Sampler, which matches large packaged-goods firms with consumers seeking samples by mail, has acquired fellow Toronto tech startup AdMass.

To start, Sampler plans to give its clients the ability to incorporate user-generated content (UGC) campaigns into their sampling programs, leveraging AdMass’s tech to streamline the curation of UGC and assess consumers’ influence.

How B.C.’s UniUni went from local concern to last-mile powerhouse (THE LOGIC)

In 2019, UniUni co-founder Peter Lu received a life-altering call. Would his company be interested in becoming the last-mile hauler for Shein, an e-commerce firm in the midst of global expansion? To call it good timing for the British Columbia-based last-mile delivery startup would be an understatement.

Elevate Festival offers 50% off for Startups until July 30, 2023

Elevate Festival was built to amplify and connect startups, so this summer, Elevate and Moneris have teamed up to offer a limited-time deal for startups.

Until July 30th, startups can take advantage of 50% of Elevate Festival Startup passes. That means that if you run or work at a startup, you will have the opportunity to get a 3-day Startup pass for only $125!

Hear from the world’s most innovative minds, meet with Canada’s leading investors, source leads, pitch on stage, network in the Startup lounge, connect with fellow founders at evening socials, and more!

Book Now!

Oco partners with Adidas to launch shoes sporting carbon-captured ink (BETAKIT)

German athletic clothing and shoes brand Adidas is launching 400,000 pairs of its trail running footwear line, TERREX, with carbon-captured ink from Calgary-based startup Oco.

Shopify fuels meeting purge by shaming employees with cost calculator (TORONTO STAR)

Time is money, and Shopify wants its workers to understand that maxim applies to pointless meetings, too.

Shopify has rolled out a calculator embedded in employees’ calendar app that uses average compensation data across roles and disciplines, along with meeting length and attendee count, to put a price tag on the event.

Shopify teases AI assistant for entrepreneurs, Sidekick (BETAKIT)

As the market applications for artificial intelligence continue to grow, Shopify has unveiled its own AI assistant for entrepreneurs, Sidekick.

This AI assistant is Shopify's latest effort in its broader AI play and its bet on the generative AI market that has dominated the tech industry for the past year.

How Amazon is Losing to Shein and Temu (YAHOO)

Shein and Temu’s rapid adoption by U.S. consumers appears to be chipping away at Amazon’s massive market dominance.

Mobile app data gathered by the analytics firm GWS suggests the retail behemoth has experienced a “significant” drop in users in recent months while Temu and Shein see increased users and screen time.

Alberta Technology Minister's mandate letter appears to support reducing restrictions on title 'software engineer' (BETAKIT)

In her mandate letter, Alberta Premier Danielle Smith appears to task the provincial Minister of Technology and Innovation, Nate Glubish, with ensuring "appropriate governance of software engineers that will not hamper the efforts of tech companies to attract these needed-professionals from competing jurisdictions.”

Indian food delivery giant Swiggy acquires LYNK in retail distribution push (TECHCRUNCH)

Swiggy has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire LYNK, a retail logistics startup with a network of over 100,000 stores, the latest in a series of purchases by the Indian food delivery giant in the last two years.

Swiggy, valued at $10.7 billion in its previous funding, last year acquired restaurant tech platform Dineout.

Report: Canada saw over 30,000 tech workers immigrate while losing nearly 1,700 to the US (BETAKIT)

Canada saw an intake of over 30,000 tech workers from abroad within the last year, a new report from the Technology Councils of North America (TECNA) and Canada’s Tech Network (CTN) found.

Additionally, the report found that Canada “largely” benefits from investment of American tech companies as they expand or relocate to Canada.

Flexport Founder Ryan Petersen Is VC Firm Founders Fund’s Newest Partner (FORBES)

A decade after launching the $8 billion-valued logistics startup, Flexport founder Ryan Petersen is turning venture capitalist.

Petersen is joining one of Flexport’s leading backers, Founders Fund, as a partner. Petersen will continue to serve as the San Francisco-based company’s executive chairman.

Waterloo tops global list of enrolment for computer science students (BETAKIT)

Three Canadian universities have made a list of the top-25 highest ranked computer science universities globally.

The list is part of the QS World University Rankings. This year’s marks the 20th edition of the list, which features 1,500 institutions across 104 locations.

Domino’s Pizza Is Soon Coming to Uber Apps for the First Time

Domino's, the world’s largest pizza company by sales and stores, reversed its stance against last-mile food delivery companies with a signed Uber Eats and Postmates deal, bringing its menu to apps across the U.S., U.K., and Canada.

Tapping into Vaughan's emerging world-class healthcare hub with Mayor Del Duca (BETAKIT)

The Cortellucci Vaughan Hospital sits on more than 80 acres of undeveloped land.

Vaughan Mayor Steven Del Duca—along with Council colleagues, Mackenzie Health, York University, and ventureLAB—has a plan to turn that land into a world-leading medical innovation hub.

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Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl is a staff writer and newsletter curator at BetaKit with a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University. He's interested in tech, gaming, and sports. You can find out more about him at alexriehl.com or @RiehlAlex99 on Twitter.

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