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Welcome to Dealboard. In this weekly feature, The Current is providing a look at the mergers, acquisitions and venture capital deals making waves in ecommerce, CPG and retail.
This week brought new funding for CPG beverage brands putting a new spin on water. Plus, ecommerce roll-ups make acquisitions and received new investment
Check out all of the news:
Path water. (Courtesy photo)
Liquid Death, a canned water brand, raised $70 million in a new round of funding that valued the company at $700 million, Bloomberg reported. The round was led by Science Ventures, with participation from Live Nation Entertainment, Swedish House Mafia and comedian Whitney Cummings. The three-year-old startup built by selling canned water with standout branding and marketing, and has also added flavored beverages. It is on track for $130 million in revenue this year, Bloomberg reported. Following the funding round, it plans to expand into new beverage categories and the European market.
Path, a sustainable bottled water brand, raised $30 million in a Series A funding round. The financing was led by Altos Ventures, with participation from Blue Investment Group and Ninja. A trio of entertainment luminaries also participated: HartBeat Ventures, which is the venture fund of actor and comedian Kevin Hart, former American Idol host Ryan Seacrest and Food Network star Guy Fieri.
Caraway, a kitchenware and home goods brand, raised $35 million. The round was led by McCarthy Capital. The company manufactures non-toxic, non-stick ceramic cookware pieces, as well as bakeware and linens. The company recently launched a kettle line and smaller sizes of the cookware pieces. The funding will support its innovation pipeline, marketing and customer experience.. It is also planning to expand its retail presence, which already includes partnerships with Crate & Barrel, Amazon, Nordstrom, Zola, West Elm, Williams Sonoma and others. Founded in 2019, the brand now has more than 40 employees.
Stockly, a platform helping retailers sell out-of-stock items, raised $12 million in new funding, Techcrunch reported. Eurazeo, Daphni and undisclosed angels participated in the round. The company is building a network that allows retailers to fill an order for an out-of-stock item with an item available from another retailer. Clients include Galeries Lafayette, Jonak and Go Sport.
Flora, an ecommerce platform focused on sustainability, raised $9 million. Investors included Lux Capital, Correlation Ventures, Climate Capital and Google AdSense Gokul Rajaram. Also participating were D4 Ventures, Esas Ventures, Paragon Ventures, and the 23 Fund also participated in this round along with entrepreneurs Firat & Fatih Isbecer of Pozitron, Ramakant Sharma of Livspace, Rob Gabel of Tubular Labs, along with executives and investors from Amazon, Apple, Doordash, Goldman Sachs, Silverlake, and Softbank. Flora acquires brands based on sustainability impact and performance, then integrates them into its operating platform to grow sales and optimize operations. It is planning to launch a marketplace in the coming months.
Mergers and acquisitions
Pattern Brands has a new acquisition. (Courtesy photo)
Pattern, a family of brands focused in the home-life space, announced the acquisition of Onsen, a Utah-based towel and robe company. Onsen makes fast-drying towels in the ‘waffle-weave’ style that was popularized in Japan. Created by the founders of the agency Gin Lane, Pattern raised $25 million earlier this year with plans to acquire Shopify-based brands and scale them to reach a broader audience. The company has acquired four brands in the last 12 months.
Poshmark, the social commerce platform for secondhand goods, is set to be acquired by Naver, a South Korean internet company. The deal is valued at about $1.2 billion, which is a 15% premium on Poshmark's stock price at the close of trading on Oct. 3. Naver is a search engine and ecommerce platform that stands to gain a deeper foothold in shopping through the acquisition. It can also help Poshmark, which offers users opportunities to buy and sell fashion, home goods and beauty products, reach international markets. The companies said the acquisition will "create a global player in online fashion re-commerce by combining Poshmark’s unique discovery-based social shopping platform and deeply engaged community with Naver’s technological prowess in upleveling the ecommerce experience." The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2023.
Supply, a direct-to-consumer razor brand, was acquired by Foundry Brands, according to a Twitter thread from Supply founder Patrick Coddou. Starting with a single-edge razor that the cofounders pitched on Shark Tank, the brand built a cult following and added products for shaving and skincare. Following the acquisition, the seven-year-old brand’s team will remain with the brand as it pursues a “new phase of growth,” Coddou wrote, adding, “Literally nothing is changing except that we’re going to move faster, grow quicker, and get better.”
Society Brands, an ecommerce aggregator, announced the acquisition of three brands: Supplements and vitamins brand Capsule Supplies, children’s product company Yankee Toy Box and collegiate apparel retailer Barnesmith. Launched in 2020, Society acquires brands that primarily sell on Amazon and through DTC channels. It then encourages founders to stay on as brand presidents, joining a network of entrepreneurs that share best practices.
Beauty conglomerate Shiseido said its European arm will acquireGallinée, a brand that focuses on the skin microbiome. Founded in 2014, the brand offers a range of skincare products that include a complex of prebiotics, probiotics and postbiotics. Following the acquisition, Gallinée founder Marie Drago will join Shiseido’s EMEA team as the chief creative officer of the brand, delivering product innovation and support.
Trending in Economy
Dealboard has funding and M&A updates from ecommerce aggregators and forecasting software.
This week, the aggregator space is active with M&A, IKEA is ready to roll out newly-purchased warehouse management software and Authentic Brands Group acquired a boot icon. Plus, there’s new investment to report for YouTube influencer Emma Chamberlain’s coffee brand and retail forecasting.
Here’s a look at the latest deals:
Chamberlain Coffee raises $7M
Chamberlain Coffee, the consumer brand founded by YouTube influencer Emma Chamberlain, raised $7 million in new funding.
The financing included backing from existing investors including Blazar Capital, Chamberlain and United Talent Agency. New investors include Volition Capital, Electric Feel Ventures, L.A. Libations and Noah Bremen, founder of PLTFRM.
The new funding follows the launch of a Ready-to-Drink (RTD) product and coffee pods. Previously, the brand raised a Series A in August 2022.
"Creating a uniquely inviting coffee brand has been my dream for so long now, and having key investors back us allows us to build Chamberlain Coffee in ways that feel fresh and exciting,” said Chamberlain, in a statement. “There are so many products I am eager to develop and projects I'm excited to get working on. With such an incredible team and group of investors I am more excited than ever to see what the future holds for Chamberlain Coffee."
Impact Analytics raises new funding
Impact Analytics, a software company for retail supply chain and merchandise planning, raised new funding from Vistara Growth.
The new investment, the amount of which was not disclosed, comes after Impact raised funding in February 2021 and October 2022 from Argentum.
The funding will help Impact Analytics further develop its Impact Analytics SmartSuite product portfolio, which is designed to help optimize forecasting, merchandising and end-to-end lifecycle pricing. Rather than the traditional forecasting approach of basing decisions on the preceding year, Impact Analytics applies a model that includes 150 variables from internal and external sources, while combining recency and history. Clients include BJ's Wholesale Club, Dick's Sporting Goods, Puma and Tapestry.
Selva Ventures closes $34M Fund II
Selva Ventures, a venture capital firm focused on consumer brands that promote healthier living, closed its second fund at $34 million, TechCrunch reported.
With the new funding, Selva will invest in brands across categories including health, wellness, beauty and personal care. The fund expects to write checks of $1-2 million in seed and Series A startups, while assisting in areas like finance, operations and retail partnerships.
Backers of the second fund include Unilever Ventures, PagsGroup and Obelysk.
MERGERS AND ACQUISITIONS
Authentic Brands Group acquires IP of Hunter
Nautica and Forever 21 owner Authentic Brands Group acquired the intellectual property of Hunter, a 160-year-old British outdoor lifestyle brand known for its Wellington boots.
With the deal, ABG appointed longtime partners Batra Group and Marc Fisher to execute retail and ecommerce operations, as well as continue to expand the brand in the UK and U.S., respectively.
“At the intersection of fashion and outdoor, Hunter introduces another elevated global brand to Authentic’s diverse Lifestyle portfolio,” said Authentic CEO Jamie Salter, in a statement.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Cookware brand Great Jones acquired by Meyer
DTC cookware brand Great Jones was acquired by Meyer Corporation, a global company that also owns kitchen brands such as Farberware and KitchenAid.
Founded in 2018, Great Jones grew with stylish, colorful cookware that stood out on Instagram feeds. CEO Sierra Tishgart will remain in the lead role, and take on an expanded role as the creative director of Meyer. Previously, Meyer was both a supplier and minority investor in Great Jones through fundraising. Now, Meyer will support product expansion and international retail development.
"I have long admired Meyer's expertise in our category, and I've had the personal pleasure of getting to know the Meyer family and team over several years," said Tishgart, in a statement. "I am ecstatic about the opportunities their support will unlock for Great Jones. We've operated as a small team of less than 10 throughout the company's four-year history, and this collaboration will strengthen our technical capabilities and secure our reach for many, many years to come."
IKEA owner acquires supply chain software
The investment arm of IKEA parent Ingka Group acquired the warehouse management software platform Made4Net.
As a result of the deal, Made4Net’s software will be deployed across IKEA’s 482 stores and fulfillment centers. Made4Net will continue to operate as an independent subsidiary of Ingka, with a headquarters in New Jersey. CEO Duff Davidson will remain at the helm of the company.
“Our business currently requires a better fulfillment operations system with more accurate data that better supports handling for our customers,” said Tolga Öncu, head of retail at Ingka Group, in a statement. “Our goal is to become leaders of life at home, serving more people in an omnichannel reality, whenever and however customers choose to meet us.”
SellerX acquires Elevate
European ecommerce aggregator SellerX acquired Elevate Brands, a U.S.-based aggregator.
The combined companies will be known as SellerX Group. It will comprise a portfolio that includes 80 Amazon-native private label consumer brands in categories including sports and outdoors, home, mobile accessories, pets and consumables. The portfolio will span over 40,000 products.
With the deal, SellerX Co-CEOs Philipp Triebel and Malte Horeyseck will lead SellerX Group, while Elevate Brands cofounders Ryan Gnesin, Jeremy Bell and Robert Bell will remain in key leadership positions.
“This acquisition combines our know-how and diversified portfolios of strong brands with a market-leading technology platform and strong operational infrastructure,” said Triebel, in a statement. “By leveraging our combined strengths, I am convinced we are well-positioned to drive further consolidation in the industry.”
Society Brands acquires Wolf Tactical
Ecommerce aggregator Society Brands acquired Wolf Tactical, a tactical gear company.
Founded in 2017 by Tim Wu, Wolf Tactical makes products including DC belts, range belts to weighted vest and tactical backpacks.
"I started Wolf Tactical by myself as a side hustle with very limited knowledge of business and entrepreneurship. A combination of hard work and relentless learning allowed me to build it into a multi-million-dollar business," said Wu who will remain as brand president, in a statement. "With the help of Society Brands, I have access to untapped potential that I would not be able to achieve by myself.”