R|T: The Retail Times – Voice-activated retail

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Digital Main Street

Ritual raises $90 million CAD Series C (BETAKIT)

The round included participation from existing investors Greylock Partners, Insight Ventures, and Mistral Venture Partners.

DMS Recommends: Get Ready for a 5G World: Wireless Innovation and Business Value (DIGITALMAINSTREET)

Join IDC and Rogers on June 14th for a stimulating discussion about the future of wireless in Canada and how it will impact your business.

Patreon acquires Kit to let creators bundle merch in subscriptions (TECHCRUNCH)

Kit is building a merchandise logistics backend so creators don’t have to fiddle with spreadsheets and stuff envelopes themselves.

Target expands curbside pickup and same-day delivery services (ENGADGET)

Target is determined to win over shoppers in a hurry — the retail giant is expanding its Drive Up curbside pickup and Shipt same-day delivery services across the US Midwest and Southeast.

Flexiti Financial acquires $250 million of TD’s private label credit card portfolio (BETAKIT)

Flexiti’s transaction is financed by $350 million in credit facilities led by Credit Suisse AG, Cayman Islands Branch, and a syndicate of mezzanine lenders.

Casper launches a $35 nap pillow for sleeping on-the-go (TECHCRUNCH)

While the startup remains best-known for its mattresses, it’s expanded to offer not just pillows and sheets, but also dog beds. It also partnered with American Airlines to provide sleep products to higher-end flyers.

H&M tests voice-activated mirrors at NYC flagship (RETAILDIVE)

The voice-activated mirrors “wake up” through facial recognition when someone looks at it long enough, and also offer selfies, style advice, and discounts via QR codes.

Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten acquires Silicon Valley startup Curbside (DEALSTREETASIA)

The acquisition will provide Rakuten’s customers with more ways to connect with shops and merchants, allowing them to order ahead using their mobile devices.

Element AI and SSENSE release dataset to help designers build AR for fashion (BETAKIT)

SSENSE and Element AI are jointly sponsoring a $2,000 text-to-image generation challenge at the European Conference on Computer Vision.

Sequoia Capital leads $11.5M funding in social commerce startup Meesho (INC42)

Meesho’s tools include an online platform that allows sellers to manage purchases and process payments, as well as a network of wholesale suppliers (its main categories are currently fashion and lifestyle items) and logistics providers.


Amira Zubairi

Amira Zubairi is a staff writer and content creator at BetaKit with a strong interest in Canadian startup, business, and legal tech news. In her free time, Amira indulges in baking desserts, working out, and watching legal shows.

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