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Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for Financo

Imran Khan, former chief strategy officer at Snap Inc., has raised $17.5 million for his new e-commerce startup, according to a source familiar with the deal. Lightspeed Venture Partners was lead investor, with Khan's friends and family also participating.

Why it matters: Khan is launching a multi-brand retailer aimed at millennials, with an eye toward someday taking on Amazon.

Khan's wife Cate, who recently stepped down as head of retail for Amazon-owned Quidsi, will join the startup as a co-founder.

Jeremy Liew, a Lightspeed partner and early investor Snap, sees big potential in the multi-brand retailer model that Khan is going after, pointing to a slew of billion dollar-plus e-commerce exits in the last five years.

“Like the alumni of PayPal and other great companies, Snap employees will go on to build a new generation of startups. We are thrilled to partner with Imran and Cate Khan to fund the first of the Snap mafia.”
— Jeremy Liew

The Los Angeles-based business is expected to launch in time for next year's holiday shopping season, with Khan using the money to build out his team.

  • He recently announced a slew of new high-level hires, including Jason Bosco, former VP of engineering at Dollar Shave Club to lead engineering, Alex Barinka, former deals reporter at Bloomberg to lead communications, and Matthew Terry, former VP of fulfillment at Thrive Market to lead fulfillment.
  • Khan hopes to hire another 20-25 employees in the next six months, according a source familiar with his plans. Many of the hires will focus on product and engineering.
  • We still don't yet know the startup's name or what product verticals in plans to begin with.

Go deeper

3 hours ago - Technology

TikTok drives new nostalgia economy

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

Older brands, trends and technologies are making a comeback as younger consumers desperately chase slower, less chaotic times.

The big picture: TikTok's algorithm makes it easy for flashback items to resurface and quickly go viral both on its platform and eventually on other social networks.

Updated 6 hours ago - World

Reports: Up to 17 U.S. missionaries kidnapped in Haiti

Haitian soldiers guard the public prosecutor's office in Port-au-Prince earlier this month. Photo: Richard Pierrin/AFP via Getty Images

Children were among up to 17 American Christian missionaries and their relatives kidnapped by a gang in Haiti on Saturday, the New York Times first reported.

Details: The missionaries had just left an orphanage and were traveling by bus to the airport to "drop off some members" and were due to travel to another destination when the gang struck in Port-au-Prince, Haitian security officials said, per the NYT.

8 hours ago - World

Melbourne, "world's most locked-down city," to lift stay-at-home orders

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews during a news conference in Melbourne, Australia, on Sunday. Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Melbourne's stay-at-home orders will end five days earlier than planned, officials in Australia's second-biggest city announced Sunday.

Why it matters: The capital of the state of Victoria has had six lockdowns totaling 262 days since March last year. That means Melbourne spent longer under lockdown than "any other city in the world" during the pandemic, Reuters notes.

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