‘A monstrous market’: Whatnot co-founder Grant Lafontaine on what’s next for the livestream shopping unicorn

In less than two years, Whatnot has become the most valuable independent livestream shopping company in the U.S. The platform for collectible trading cards, comic books and toys just raised $150M in a Series C round from venture capital firms, valuing it at $1.5 billion. Whatnot co-founder Grant Lafontaine spoke with Modern Retail about the future of livestream e-commerce, what draws investors to the space, and how his company plans to preserve its identity even as it plots its live video takeover.

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  • SEP 14, 2021

    Singapore’s Shopee eyes global expansion with a gamified approach to e-commerce

    Southeast Asia’s biggest e-commerce company Shopee is reportedly headed to Poland, India and Argentina — three markets that fit squarely into its focus on rapidly digitizing economies. But the Singapore-based company may have difficulty scaling.

  • SEP 10, 2021

    ‘A solution in search of a problem’: Facebook’s Ray-Ban Stories are the fashionable smart glasses that consumers still might not want

    On Thursday, Facebook rolled out its first smart glasses model, Ray-Ban Stories, in partnership with glasses design house, EssilorLuxottica, for $299. While Facebook’s partnership may fix one issue formerly plaguing the wearable tech industry – clunky, ugly styles – analysts are still skeptical that iteration will drive widespread consumer adoption.  

  • SEP 09, 2021
    The header image shows a puzzle with each piece spelling out Amazon.

    Amazon Briefing: The B-to-B marketplace opportunity

    Amazon aggregators are beginning to turn to B-to-B sellers for growth. But in focusing on this segment, aggregators are also underscoring just how big of an opportunity B-to-B has quietly become for Amazon -- and Amazon sellers -- writ large.

  • SEP 07, 2021

    Brands are tiptoeing into Discord

    A closed, decentralized ecosystem like Discord might not seem like a place for brands to flock to. But in recent months, a growing number -- including those outside of the gaming world -- have begun testing the platform. Resale site StockX debuted a Discord server in June, and brands like AllSaints, Chipotle and Jack in the Box have all hosted events and Q&As in their own Discord servers.

  • SEP 03, 2021

    For food delivery services, private label is the next battleground

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  • SEP 02, 2021

    Amazon Briefing: Tightening inventory limits continue to make sellers nervous

    In its quest to become everything to its customers and its sellers -- the company that both controls the plurality of retail sales in the U.S. and manages shipping and fulfillment for an ever-larger share of its millions of sellers -- Amazon might, in some ways, have over-promised what it can handle.

  • SEP 01, 2021

    Feeling a profit crunch, buy now pay later services bet on advertising

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  • AUG 31, 2021

    Galaxy Live is betting on influencers and resale to stand out in the crowded livestream shopping space

    For years, creators and influencers have relied on ad-based revenue and sponsorship deals to earn an income on social platform, such as Instagram and YouTube. This has resulted in a select few influencers becoming sought-after, while many micro-influencers struggle to monetize their content without big brand deals. Now, new live streaming resale platform Galaxy wants to attract these creators with a revenue-sharing model.

  • AUG 27, 2021

    How Walmart’s new DSP aims to take on Amazon

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    Amazon Briefing: The great physical retail pivot

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  • AUG 26, 2021

    Hot tubs and hardcore gamers: How Twitch is trying to stay brand-friendly as it expands beyond gaming

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  • AUG 24, 2021

    StockX CMO on how Gen Z is shaping the platform’s growth strategy

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  • SEP 13, 2021

    Back to school 2021: What happened and what it means moving forward

    Watch this on-demand webinar where experts discuss the changes to the back-to-school season and what it means for retailers now and in the future.

Modern Retail Summit
Oct 12–Oct 14, 2021

At the Modern Retail Summit, retail executives will come together to discuss effective strategies for driving sales by building a loyal customer base both online and offline.

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