Axios Pro: Retail Deals

July 22, 2022

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Good morning — it's Friday!

🏪 Situational awareness: 7-Eleven cut approximately 880 corporate jobs about a year after closing its $21 billion acquisition of rival Speedway.

1 big thing: Precipitous drop in e-commerce funding

Funding to e-commerce startups
Reproduced from CB Insights; Chart: Axios Visuals

E-commerce funding in the second quarter fell by 60% from the first quarter to $4.3 billion, according to CB Insights, Kimberly writes.

Why it matters: The pandemic demonstrated the importance of a robust e-commerce business, but it also potentially sapped future investment in that area — and we now may be nearing the market's ceiling.

What's happening: The data shows investors were eager to jump on the e-commerce bandwagon during the height of COVID but began pulling back once economies reopened and people began enjoying leisure activities away from screens.

Of note: Most e-commerce investing is in early-stage companies (around 60%, CB Insights says), which indicates a steep drop-off in overall market activity over the last quarter.

Yes, but: There were some standouts in Q2 with whopping valuations, per CB Insights. Notably, many were late-stage companies.

  • Salsify raised a $200 million Series F, at a valuation of $2 billion.
  • Bucketplace raised $182 million in a Series D, valuing it at $1.4 billion.
  • Material Bank's Series D netted it $175 million, with a valuation of $1.9 billion.
  • SoftBank-backed Firework took in $150 million in Series B funding, valuing it at $750 million.

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