The importance of unwritten knowledge

Having grandma’s kitchen and recipes doesn’t mean you can reproduce her cooking. Practical experience and unwritten knowledge are important components in how science advances and how companies operate.

Simple, Not Easy

Pierogies are a simple food. The dough has four ingredients: flour, butter, egg, and salt. The filling has five: potatoes, onions, butter…

When Covid-19 hit, the marketplace had already been making foundational enhancements to search for three years

Life is all about playing the hand you’re dealt. Covid-19 dealt a lot of shitty hands. Yet Etsy came out of the worst of the pandemic holding a royal flush. CEO Josh Silverman referred to 2020 as “a time when opportunity met preparedness.” …

The creator economy is hot right now, but the gains aren’t evenly distributed.

While technology has made global distribution effortless, discovery remains challenging. Below, a look at music streaming, Gini coefficients, and platform business models.

Distribution vs. Discovery

If the press releases are to be trusted, technology is democratizing everything. It’s never been easier for someone to start a newsletter, podcast, or teach an online class…

Why Casper bleeds cash while Purple makes money

Failure is a great teacher. In late November, mattress-in-a-box firm Casper announced that it was being taken private at a valuation roughly 25% of its last private funding round. Some lessons from Casper’s failure.

Coke Pepsi Challenge

Casper’s gross margins are a few percentage points higher than Purple’s. Higher gross margins means more…

Unlike other ultrafast grocery delivery startups, GoPuff aims for the gap between the supermarket and the bodega

While Amazon is raising grocery delivery prices, investors are throwing billions at startups offering ultrafast, cheap grocery delivery. A look at GoPuff, one of the pioneers in the space.

Inflation Is Real

On October 25th, Amazon raised prices for Whole Foods grocery delivery, to the consternation of yuppies everywhere. Two-hour delivery, formerly free…

Sweetgreen’s S1 reveals how hard it is for restaurant chains to compete against delivery aggregators like DoorDash and Uber Eats

Existential Threats

Sweetgreen is a thoughtful company. It prioritizes sourcing produce from local, organic, and regenerative farms. It’s in tune with seasonality and mindful of its carbon footprint. Instead of managers, it has assistant coaches and head coaches. Flooded with sunlight and filled with succulents, its stores are Instagram worthy:

By automating drink preparation and operating tiny shops, the NYC coffee upstart could be the biggest threat to Starbucks yet

There are 4,000 coffee shops in New York City. Blank Street thinks they’re all doing it wrong. The company just raised $25 million from Tiger Global and General Catalyst to blanket the city with mobile carts and micro-stores serving low priced, high quality coffee.

What is Blank Street?

Finding a cup of coffee in…

As the clothing rental company prepares to go public, its S-1 filing reveals a brand that’s high on style but short on substance

WTF Is Depreciation?

Nothing gets my heart racing like the phrase “the most ridiculous thing I’ve seen since WeWork,” so my palms got sweaty when I saw this Tweet:

All assets have limited lifespans. Trucks can only drive for so many miles. Computers and IT hardware become obsolete. When’s the last time…

Paying in installments is just a Trojan horse for the payments company’s plans to become a shopping destination

If Sebastian Siemiatkowski made the boat, Klarna wouldn’t exist. Siemiatkowski, Klarna’s co-founder and CEO, was backpacking around the world without taking any airplanes. Missing a cargo ship in Australia delayed his schedule so that instead of enrolling in a masters program in Sweden, he spent a year working for an…

Kevin LaBuz

Head of Investor Relations at 1stDibs. Previously finance at Etsy, Indeed, and internet equity research at Deutsche Bank. Find me on Twitter @kjlabuz.

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