Dec 11, 2018

Startups aim at "QVC for millennials"

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

No one has yet built a “QVC for millennials,” but that’s not stopping entrepreneurs from trying to put a uniquely tailored twist on home shopping.

The bigger picture: A slew of companies are working to marry millennials’ affinities for online video and shopping — and capitalize on their arrival as the most populous generation.

  • Millennials love watching video online: 61% of young adults in the U.S. primarily use a streaming service to watch TV, according to a 2017 Pew Research report, and 35% of millennials picked YouTube as their preferred video provider for long and short-form content, according to a recent Comscore survey.
  • Millennials love to shop online: In 2016, millennials made 54% of their purchases (excluding groceries) online, and 63% complete transactions on their smartphones, according to UPS.

A number of startups are tackling the challenge of marrying these trends, each from a different angle.

But, but, but: Home shopping giants QVC and HSN aren’t giving up on millennials just yet. The companies, both owned by Qurate Retail Group, are making changes to the products and brands they sell and adopting streaming and social media to reach younger audiences.

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Situational awareness

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Catch up on today's biggest news:

  1. Scoop: New White House personnel chief tells Cabinet liaisons to target Never Trumpers
  2. Trump misrepresents 2020 Russia briefing as Democratic "misinformation"
  3. Bernie Sanders takes aim at Bloomberg: "Trump will chew him up and spit him out"
  4. Nearly half of Republicans support pardoning Roger Stone
  5. Scoop: Lyft acquires cartop advertising startup Halo Cars

Sanders takes aim at Bloomberg: "Trump will chew him up and spit him out"

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Bernie Sanders told CBS "60 Minutes" that he was surprised by Mike Bloomberg's lackluster performance at Wednesday's Democratic debate.

What he's saying: "If that's what happened in a Democratic debate, you know, I think it's quite likely that Trump will chew him up and spit him out."

Scoop: Lyft acquires cartop advertising startup Halo Cars

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Lyft has acquired Halo Cars, a small startup that lets ride-hailing drivers earn money via ad displays mounted atop their cars. Lyft confirmed the deal but declined to share any details.

Why it matters: Ride-hailing companies are increasingly eyeing additional ways to generate revenue, and Lyft rival Uber has been quietly testing a partnership with New York-based Cargo that gives it a cut of the advertising revenue, as I previously reported.