News Cart for June 5th

Hey ECF readers,

This week in the podcast version I share some important thoughts I hope you'll listen to first here followed by this week's eCommerce and tech headlines below.

– Andrew

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In the News

U.S. small firms leave $150 billion in coronavirus stimulus untapped

  • A total of $660 billion was allocated to the PPP program
  • Demand for PPP loans has significantly declined over the last few weeks since the start of the pandemic

‘Digital by default': Shopify is letting employees work from home permanently (Hat Tip to Forum Member Katrina McKinnon)

  • This shift will impact more than 5,000 employees
  • Shopify will keep physical offices closed until 2021

Social media giants take different approaches to presidential messages

Amazon plans summer sale for June 22 to ‘jumpstart sales’ after coronavirus crunch

  • Amazon’s “invitation only” sale is said to be in response to the pandemic and the subsequent delay of Prime Day
  • Sellers were asked to submit deals for items with at least a 30% discount

Slack partners up with Amazon

  • Slack will use Amazon AWS more broadly and replace its lackluster video conferencing tech by integrating Amazon Chime
  • Amazon agrees to roll out Slack to all employees

Amazon reportedly considering $2 billion stake in Indian telecom operator Bharti Airtel

  • Bharti Airtel is the third-largest telecom operator in India
  • Comes on the heels of Facebook and Google's interest in the Indian telecom space with previous talks and/or investments

Alibaba expands its US presence with new programs designed to help businesses struggling with COVID-19

  • Includes longer payment terms, a more unified shipping/fulfillment platform and and additional trade shows
  • U.S. buyers have increased by 70-100% year over year

Stitch Fix to Lay off About 1,400 Employees in California

  • Stitch Fix closed two distribution centers in march due to COVID-19.
  • The company says it plans on hiring 2,000 employees in lower-cost cities like Dallas, Austin, or Minneapolis.
  • All California-based employees will be given the chance to relocate and keep their job

Pinterest adds a ‘Shop’ tab to its Lens Camera search results to showcase matching in-stock products

  • Take a picture of something and see similar items that are in-stock and available for purchase on Pinterest
  • Pinterest reported seeing 3x the number of visual searches compared to 2019
  • Follows Pinterest’s announcement of its partnership with Shopify

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