May 19, 2020

ThredUp’s expansion into Canada is the natural next step, says CEO

Retail
Ecommerce
ThredUp
Mohammed Mestar
2 min
ThredUp’s expansion into Canada is the natural next step, says CEO

ThredUp co-founder and CEO James Reinhart says the online retailer is meeting demands after opening its doors to the Canada market for the first time.

The San Francisco-based second-hand apparel specialist began accepting orders earlier in June and plans to open two distribution centres if sales reach expectations.

“Canada is the top market we’ve received interest from outside the U.S. so we are excited to finally bring ThredUp’s unrivaled value and convenience to our neighbors,” said Reinhart.

The development comes after ThredUp announced plans earlier this week to open its first bricks-and-mortar store in Texas.

Specializing in used women’s and children’s apparel with huge discounts on recognisable brands, it processes up to 100,000 orders per day working in 26 different countries worldwide.

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It is backed by investors such as Goldman Sachs, Highland Capital and Trinity Venture.

While enjoying rapid growth globally, online retail is still a small part of the business in Canada with Stats Canada revealing last year that only 2% of total retail purchasing is done on the web.

Retail analyst Sally Seston says buyers of second-hand apparel in Canada may now be more encouraged to increase their purchasing online rather in-store.

"People who are going to shop at a retail mall quality resale clothing store are more about the financials of being able to dress and look current on a very restricted budget," she told CBC News.

"By bringing it online, it eliminates the stigma of walking into a second-hand store to buy things."

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Jun 18, 2021

Microsoft: Building a secure foundation to drive NASCAR

NASCAR
Microsoft
3 min
Racing fans can expect the ultimate virtual experience as a result of the partnership with Microsoft and NASCAR

Microsoft is a key partner of The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) and together they are driving ahead to create an inclusive and immersive new fan experience (FX).

These long-term partners have not only navigated the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic with the use of Microsoft Teams and Microsoft 365, but are now looking to a future packed with virtual events to enhance the FX, well beyond NASCAR’S famous Daytona racetrack. 

“Together, we've created a secure environment that's allowed for collaboration, but the future is all about the fans”, said Melinda Cook, General Manager for Microsoft South USA Commercial Business, who cited a culture of transparency, passion, adaptiveness, and a growth mindset as to why this alignment is so successful.”

“We've partnered to create a fluid, immersive experience for the users that is supported by a secure foundation with Microsoft in the background. We are focused on empowering and enabling customers and businesses, like NASCAR, to reach their full potential. We do this with our cloud platform which provides data insights and security.”

“Our cloud environment allows NASCAR to move forward with their digital transformation journey while we are in the background,” said Cook who highlights that Microsoft is helping NASCAR

  • Empower employees productivity and collaboration
  • Improve fan engagement and experience
  • Improve environment security and IT productivity
  • Improve racing operations

 

Microsoft Teams, which is part of the Microsoft 365 suite, enabled employees to work remotely, while staying productive, during the pandemic. “This allowed people to provide the same level of productivity with the use of video conference and instant messaging to collaborate on documents. Increased automation also allows the pit crews, IT, and the business to focus on safety, racing operations, and on the fan experience,” said Cook.

“We have started to innovate to create a more inclusive fanbase, this includes using Xbox to give people the experience of being a virtual racer or even leveraging some of the tools in Microsoft Teams to have a virtual ride along experience.”

“These environments are how we create a more inclusive and immersive experience for the fans. We're working on a virtual fan wall which allows people from new locations to participate in these events,” said Cook, who pointed out Microsoft was also helping bring legacy experiences alive from NASCAR’s archives. 

“At Microsoft we can take it one level further by letting fans know what it's like to see the pit crew experience, the data and all the behind-the-scenes action. We will continue to improve automation with machine learning and artificial intelligence, from marketing to IT operations to finance to racing operations,” said Cook.

Christine Stoffel-Moffett, Vice President of Enterprise Technology at NASCAR, said: “Microsoft is one of our key partners. They have been instrumental in helping the NASCAR enterprise technology team re-architect our Microsoft systems to ensure an advanced level of security across our environment, contribute to our business outcomes, and focus on fan experience.”

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