A weekly podcast with the latest e-commerce news and events. Episode 6 covers Commerce in Korea, a Holiday Update including the shape of holiday peaks and the risk for holiday shipments, Gilts potential sale and the overall state of Daily Deal Sites, Nordstrom E-commerce investment strategy, Hoverboard fire problems, and a few Amazon and Alibaba tidbits.
This weeks episode was recorded across the international dateline, with Scot at home in the US, and Jason in Seoul, S. Korea. Jason shares an update on the e-commerce market in South Korea, which is the 3rd largest e-commerce market in Asia, and the 7th largest in the world. Being the home of Samsung, Seoul has very robust adoption of Samsung Pay. Interestingly, the Seoul e-commerce scene is dominated by local players. KakaoTalk is the local chat system favored by Koreans which features a robust ecosystem of chat commerce features. Naver is the local search engine with close to 70% share (vs. Google’s 4% share). Coupang is the largest e-commerce site, while Alibaba, Amazon, and E-Bay do not have a strong presence. Coupang received a $1B US investment from Softbank this year, at a reported $5B pre-money valuation.
Scot shared the Holiday 2015 Same Store Sales December Week 2 Results, and it appears that this holiday season is taking a “U-Shape” with an early peak around the cyber-5 and a late peak just before Christmas. That late peak will put extra pressure on the shipping firms as they struggle to keep up with holiday demand. UPS expands its fleet by renting U-Hauls for the holidays, but apparently this year some customers are calling 911 on suspicious looking UPS drivers getting out of U-Hauls.
There is a rumor that Saks Fifth Avenue parent Hudson Bay Company is in talks to acquire Gilt Group, and make it part of the Saks Off Fifth brand. If true, Gilt will be selling for considerably less than its previous $1B valuation, but it is worth remembering that Gilt was a pioneering e-commerce site in many ways, and many of its former employees have gone on to other prominent positions in our industry. We also discuss the overall state of the Daily Deal industry, and Jason mentioned his favorite daily deals site meh.com by Mediocre Labs (founders of woot.com).
We discussed Nordstrom’s latest investment in Shoes of Prey and discuss Nordstrom’s previous investments in Bonobos, Trunk Club, Hautelook, Wantful, and Sole Society.
Episode 6 of the Jason & Scot show was recorded on Tuesday December 16th, 2015 (December 17th in Korea).