R|T: The Retail Times – Temu and Shein’s success = air freighters’ stress

Plus: Shopify’s green strategy gamble, DeliveryHero abandons Foodpanda sale talks.

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Rise of fast-fashion Shein, Temu roils global air cargo industry

The rapid rise of fast-fashion e-commerce retailers such as Shein and Temu is upending the global air cargo industry, as they increasingly vie for limited air-cargo space to woo consumers with rapid transit times, more than ten industry sources said.

And their growing popularity – Shein and Temu together send almost 600,000 packages to the United States every day, according to a June 2023 report by the U.S. Congress – is boosting air-freight costs from Asian hubs like Guangzhou and Hong Kong, making off-peak seasons almost disappear and causing capacity shortages, the sources said.

“The biggest trend impacting air freight right now is not the Red Sea, it’s Chinese e-commerce companies like Shein or Temu,” said Basile Ricard, director of Greater China operations at freight forwarder Bollore Logistics

The Information also reported: A number of U.S. lawmakers are pushing for a ban on imports of goods sold on Temu. Congressional committee called out Temu as a likely violator of forced labor laws.



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BC’s tech companies stand out in 2024 TSX Venture 50 list

The TSX Venture Exchange (TSXV) has released its yearly list of the 50 best-performing companies for 2024, and tech companies out west made a particularly strong showing.

Victoria-based Tiny, which ranked fifth on the technology list with a share price increase of 26 percent, invests in or acquires majority stakes in businesses such as its recent acquisition of B2B e-commerce marketplace WholesalePet.com.


Why Shopify is gambling millions on a decades-long green strategy

Shopify is backing nascent carbon-removal technologies as part of its green strategy, laid out by CEO Tobias Lütke in 2019.

In order to ensure the strategy has tangible environmental benefits, it’s willing to intentionally overpay for those credits in the hopes it can help establish a genuine market for carbon.

(The Logic)

Canadian late-stage VC funding continued to slip in 2023

For the second consecutive year, venture capital investment in Canada fell as investors remained cautious, according to new data from the Canadian Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (CVCA).

The CVCA tracked $6.9 billion invested across 660 deals during the year. Investment fell by 34 percent compared to 2022, whereas deal volume remained relatively flat year-over-year, declining by six percent.


Dead silence among the shareholders of Panier Bleu

Le Panier Bleu has been on life support since Quebec announced its imminent demise on Tuesday. The company’s shareholders – Investissement Québec, Desjardins, and the Fonds FTQ – are maintaining a deafening silence and refusing to reveal what comes next.

“We will make a decision [about our future] in the coming weeks,” Le Panier Bleu said through an agency on Tuesday regarding the bombshell dropped by Pierre Fitzgibbon.

The Minister of Economy had just declared the death of Le Panier Bleu live on national radio. The e-commerce platform has “reached the end” and a decision about its future “will be made in the coming days,” he said.

Often mocked, rarely used, Le Panier Bleu was supposed to be the place where all Quebec SMEs sell their products online without going through Amazon.

(La journal de Montréal)

BEKH, Volta and Tribe launch new initiatives to support Black Canadian founders

Tribe Network has partnered with Atlantic Canada accelerator Volta to launch a new residency program for Black founders, while the Black Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub (BEKH) is developing a new ecosystem mapping tool for Black entrepreneurs.

The new joint program between Tribe and Volta, called Accelerate Black Tech, will combine Volta’s startup mentorship model with Tribe’s network to support Black tech entrepreneurs and their startups.

Meanwhile, BEKH is developing an ecosystem mapping tool meant to help users tap into a network of resources, support, and opportunities.


Delivery Hero Says Talks to Sell Foodpanda Have Failed

German food delivery group Delivery Hero SE said negotiations to sell part of its Foodpanda business in some markets in Southeast Asia have failed after it couldn’t reach a final agreement on deal terms.

The company had confirmed on Feb. 2 that talks to sell the business in Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and other countries were continuing. Those discussions have ended, Delivery Hero said Wednesday in a statement.

(BNN Bloomberg)

Golden Ventures closes nearly $140 million CAD for fifth seed-stage VC fund

Toronto-based Golden Ventures has secured about $103 million USD ($139 million CAD) for its fifth venture capital (VC) fund focused on seed-stage technology startups across North America.

Golden will focus on leading or co-leading rounds across the seed spectrum, companies in Toronto, Kitchener-Waterloo, Montréal, and Vancouver, with initial cheques of $500,000 to $3 million.


Sequoia Retracts Request to Oust Moritz From Klarna Board

Sequoia Capital has retracted its request to remove Michael Moritz as chairman of Klarna’s board, according to emails reviewed by The Information. Sequoia partner Matthew Miller, the director who in recent days had asked Klarna shareholders to remove Moritz, is instead leaving the Klarna board.

In an email, Sequoia’s chief Roelof Botha told Klarna shareholders that the firm realized in recent days that their “understanding of the situation was wrong” and that the firm is in full support of Klarna CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski.

(The Information)

BuzzFeed sells Complex for $108 million, announces job cuts

BuzzFeed has sold Complex, the entertainment media brand it acquired for $300 million in 2021, to livestream shopping platform NTWRK for $108.6 million, the companies announced Wednesday.

The deal gives NTWRK an engine to accrue customers for its live shopping platform and a broad digital audience to sell products, like sneakers and clothes.

More media companies are looking to commerce as a way to diversify their businesses, especially amid a weaker ad market.


Feature image courtesy Eric Masur on Unsplash.

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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