Instagram Is Building a Standalone App for Shopping (The Verge)
"Its development is still ongoing, and it could be cancelled before it is released. But sources familiar with its development say Instagram believes it is well positioned to make a major expansion into e-commerce. More than 25 million businesses already have Instagram accounts and 2 million of them are advertisers."
Amazon Will Dethrone Walmart as the No. 1 Retailer of Apparel This Year, Predicts Wells Fargo (CNBC)
"The e-commerce behemoth's apparel and footwear gross sales is expected to top $30 billion this year and leapfrog longtime incumbent Walmart for the top spot. With chief executive Jeff Bezos at the helm, Amazon shares have rallied more than 22 percent in the past six months and 100 percent over the past year."
VC Money Is Pouring into E-Commerce — but Are Women Getting a Fair Share? (Retail Dive)
"Just 2 percent of the $85 billion invested by venture capital firms last year went to female-founded businesses, according to data provided to Retail Dive by Pitchbook. Last year female-founded retail businesses still raised only about half of the amount of VC funding given to male founders."
Alibaba and the Future of Business (Harvard Business Review)
"Digital-native companies such as Alibaba have the advantage of being born online and data-ready, so their transformation to smart business is quite natural. Now that they have proven the model works and are transforming the old industrial economy, it is time for all companies to understand and apply this new business logic."
Some Luxury Brands’ WeChat Services Aren’t Quite Luxurious (Jing Daily)
"As more Chinese travellers shop in time zones across the globe, they demand a real-time answer from brands no matter where they are. For as much as customers rely on WeChat for information, however, one-on-one customer service for 10 luxury brands that ranked top on digital fluency is sometimes unsatisfactory."