Till a few years ago, flash sales sites were the darlings of e-commerce. But soon, as the fad passed, so did their valuation. One of the recent sites to have fallen off the plank is Zulily (Nasdaq: ZU). The Billion Dollar Unicorn club member went public a little over a year ago in a rather successful IPO. But the tables have turned since and the company has seen its valuation crash as the company continues to miss the market’s expected financial metrics.
Last fall, we had three VCs participate in our 1M/1M roundtables to discuss their Web 3.0 and e-Commerce investment thesis. These interviews cover as well as build upon the themes discussed in my two recent books, Billion Dollar Unicorns and From E-Commerce to Web 3.0. If you are looking to build a Unicorn company in the Web 3.0 / e-Commerce domains, I strongly recommend you listen to these three interviews. In each case, listening to just the first 30 minutes would be adequate.
There are hundreds of thousands of people in various niches who have built followings online. Now comes the question: how can they monetize this following?
Sramana Mitra: Let’s start by introducing yourself as well as CampusBooks.
Jeff Cohen: I currently live in Chicago, Illinois. I was born and raised in St. Louis. I went to the University of Missouri and got my first job out of college doing marketing internship where I was involved in developing websites for the B2B market. They were basic websites from a communication standpoint. I went on to run the corporate website of a large distributor of college textbooks. >>>
You have heard me talk about a vision for Web 3.0 since 2007, when I first published my Web 3.0 = (4C + P + VS) equation. In this interview, we discuss how the systems behind the scene are coming along to make a full Web 3.0 user experience possible.
Sramana Mitra: Let’s start with some introduction about your company CoreMedia. Let’s introduce our audience to yourself as well as to the company.
Gerrit Kolb: CoreMedia has been in business for about 19 years. At the very beginning of the Internet, CoreMedia started to develop software that was related to the management of structured content. That was quickly picked up by most of the media and telco companies in Central Europe. CoreMedia became, I would say, the heart and soul and the backbone of most of the media sites operating in Central Europe. As I said, our roots are media and telco, which is typically where the leading edge >>>
According to a recent comScore report, the total online retail spending for the November–December period in 2014 was estimated to grow 16% to $61 billion. The researcher expected sales through mobile devices to see higher growth rates. Desktop generated e-tail sales were projected to grow 14% to $53.2 billion and mobile commerce was expected to grow 25% to $7.9 billion. According to the ChannelAdvisor Same Store Sales (SSS) report, during the November-December period, holiday sales did report the expected 16% growth.
As you know, I am deeply interested in personalization as it applies to e-commerce & Web 3.0. In this interview, Darren Hill and I discuss the subject at length, especially as it pertains to fashion e-commerce, another area of significant interest for me.
Sramana Mitra: Let’s start with introducing our audience to yourself as well as WebLinc. Tell us what you do and what you’re focused on.
Darren Hill: I started WebLinc with my brother in 1994 when I was 18 and a freshman at college. Before we started WebLinc, we owned a small mail-order business, which was a traditional mail-order business for mailing out catalogs. >>>
E-Commerce is a global phenomenon today, and over the next decade and more, it will become more so. Eugene talks about the trend from the perspective of one of the top logistics vendors.
Sramana Mitra: Welcome to the Thought Leaders in E-Commerce series. Why don’t you introduce yourself to our audience and tell us what you’re working on. We’ll take it from there.
Eugene Laney: I’m the Head of International Trade Affairs for DHL Express here in the US. I have two responsibilities. One is to represent DHL Express here in Washington DC before Congress as well as US embassies. The second part of my role is export promotion where I work with our sales, marketing, and media as well as operations team to develop products and services to help SMBs as well as large corporations to >>>
Suchit has bootstrapped a very interesting e-commerce platform company using services that today caters to the B2B e-commerce needs of backwater industrial customers. It’s a fascinating window in to a world we don’t hear much about.
Sramana Mitra: Let’s start with introducing our audience to Unilog. What do you do? What trends do you align with?
Suchit Bachalli: I’ll start by talking a little bit about the Unilog journey and how we’ve come to be where we are. I think it sets the stage for where we think we’re going. Unilog is a 16-year-old company. For the first 13 years of our life, we were a knowledge process outsourcing outfit out of Bangalore. >>>