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One-click checkout company Fast is closing its doors, CEO Domm Holland announced on Tuesday.
"After making great strides on our mission of making buying and selling frictionless for everyone, we have made the difficult decision to close our doors," Holland said in a statement. "While you'll no longer see the Fast button at checkout, we are incredibly proud of the team we assembled and our work to democratize commerce through Fast's one-click checkout experience."
Launched in 2020, Fast offered a one-click checkout software for internet purchases that did not require a login. This was designed to allow checkout to be embedded in online stores, as well as in email and within social media. In doing so, it held the promise of expanding the digital locales where shopping could take place, and reversing cart abandonment rates that occur when shoppers don't have payment information already on file.
"Amazon, Shopify, Apple Pay, and PayPal offer one-click checkout, but they’re closed ecosystems,” Holland told Fast Company in 2021. “With Fast, we’re available on any device and with any product.”
The announcement comes a week after Fast team members attended ShopTalk in Las Vegas, and had a presence on the tradeshow floor. But news also surfaced during the week that served as a prelude to the closure announcement. On Thursday, a report in The Information indicated the company was seeking a buyer after it was unable to raise a new round of funding.
Previously, Fast raised $120 million from investors and payments company Stripe. It hired 400 employees in 2021 while generating just $600,000 in revenue that year, The Information reported.
In the announcement this week, Holland said, "I will be forever grateful to the Fast team, our investors and the sellers who shared our vision for improving the system of buying online."
"Sometimes trailblazers don't make it all the way to the mountaintop. But even in those situations, they pave a way that all others will follow," Holland wrote. "Fast has done that with bringing one-click and headless checkout into the mainstream. Buying online has been forever changed by the incredible team at Fast. The dedication, brilliance and spirit of this remarkable team is unparalleled and will forever be the legacy of Fast."
It appears some of Fast's employees will have a landing spot following the closure. According to Business Insider, Holland sent an internal email stating that the company entered an agreement in which the "vast majority of engineers from Fast" will have the opportunity to join Buy Now Pay Later company Affirm.
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This week, there are new investment funds for QR codes and ecommerce software. Plus, Purple rejects a takeover bid, and a tennis star gets a voice with a beverage startup.
Tennis star Nick Kyrgios took an equity stake in Alive, a no-sugar probiotic soft drink developed by Australia’s Gen U Brands. Kyrgios will help the startup brand raise its profile, and is also offering business advice. “As an international citizen, so to speak, he brings a different perspective to the business,” CEO Andrew Blew told Business News Australia.
Beaconstac, a QR code customer engagement platform, raised $25 million in a Series A round. Telescope Partners led the financing, with participation from existing investor Accel. Over the lat year, the company helped businesses create 1.8 million QR codes, which were scanned over 150 million times by consumers. It is used by Revlon, Nestle, FedEx, and Marriott. The company is planning to increase its 75-person workforce by 200% in 2023.
Boxed, the bulk delivery service and ecommerce software provider, raised $20 million as it seeks to either become profitable, or sell itself. The company received $10 million upfront from an unknown lender, and could receive another $10 million upon completion of certain milestones. “This new financing will provide greater flexibility for us to continue to execute on our strategic vision and the strategic alternatives process,” said Boxed CEO Chieh Huang.
Food Should Taste Good, a natural tortilla snacks brand, was acquired by Real Food From the Ground Up from General Mills, Just Food reported. It comes about a decade after General Mills acquired Food Should Taste Good. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Purple rejected a bid to be acquired by Coliseum Capital Management in a takeover bid that was submitted in September. Purple announced last week that it declined the offer in November after Coliseum proved unwilling to $4.35 per share. In a statement, Purple Chairman Paul Zepf said the proposal “undervalues Purple and fails to recognize the strength of our business today as well as our compelling future prospects.”
Tinuiti, a performance marketing firm, acquired Ampush, a growth marketing agency. It’s a move that is designed to expand the paid social capabilities of Tinuiti. Ampush offers performance creative, optimization and analytics. Founded in 2010, Ampush works with ecommerce and subscription businesses such as Instacart, Blenders Eyewear and STARZ. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Founder Jesse Pujji shared these lessons over 13 years building the business.
\u201cI just sold my company for life changing $.\n\n13 years later, I'm an overnight success.\n\nHere are 13 lessons from the journey, by year:\u201d— Jesse Pujji (@Jesse Pujji) 1674583389
Henkel completed its acquisition of outlets in Malaysia and Taiwan from Shiseido Professional. It’s the final piece of an acquisition that began in January. Subsequently, Henkel closed on deals to acquire the haircare business in China, Japan, Singapore, South Korea and Thailand. Shiseido joins a portfolio at Henkel that also includes Schwarzkopf Professional, Authentic Beauty Concept, Bonacure and Igora Royal.
WeCommerce and Tiny are combining to form a single technology holding company. The combined company will be known as Tiny, with WeCommerce operating as a software and services group inside the business. The combined company will be valued at about $910 million. Tiny cofounders Andrew Wilkinson and Chris Sparling will serve as co-CEOs, while WeCommerce CFO David Charron will serve as CFO. Tech investor Bill Ackman will own 15.4% of the company through his firm Table Holdings, and is the largest non-management shareholder.WPF Holdings acquired ecommerce assets of KPOP 1004, which is a specialty store for K-POP and K-Beauty speciality store. With this, WPF Holdings is set to form a subsidiary called K-Shop. This will include the online shop, and kiosks at KPOP1004 in-store locations that provide shopping beyond what is offered in-store. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.