I connected with Kristin Savilia to talk about JOOR, a platform that connects brands and retailers globally to deliver seamless digital wholesale management from connection to payment. Applico ranked JOOR #2 in our 2022 Top 50 B2B Marketplaces ranking.
00:00 – Follow Applico for the latest on platforms
00:20 – Joor in Applico’s Top 50 B2B Marketplaces ranking
00:44 – Kristin Savilia background
01:31 – What does Joor do?
02:58 – Joor growth and GMV
04:19 – Joor’s hybrid approach to the fashion industry
06:33 – Brands and categories on Joor
08:59 – Fashion is a relationship business
10:09 – Will Joor look to monetize building new connections/relationships for brands?
11:01 – Marketplace is only one segment of Joor’s business
14:18 – The SaaS to marketplace trend
16:47 – Rollout of Joor Pay
20:36 – Joor’s international geographies
22:01 – Partnerships vs building tech yourself
25:01 — Do retailers get product data from Joor?
26:26 – A one stop procurement solution for retailers, buyers and merchandisers
29:33 – Will Joor expand into other verticals like cosmetics and home?
31:50 – How Joor is approaching sustainability and supply chain vetting
35:39 – Kristin Savilia bullish on this kind of fashion marketplace
37:50 – Joor’s focus and priorities for 2023
39:35 – Why DTC brands need to consider wholesale
41:01 – Closing remarks
JOOR | The World’s Premier Wholesale Management Platform – www.joor.com/
#Joor #fashion #wholesale
Alex Moazed (00:05):
Hello and welcome to Winner Take All. We have a special guest interview today, Kristin Savilia, the CEO of JOOR. Kristin, so excited to have you with us, thanks for joining.
Kristin Savilia (00:18):
Alex, thanks for having me.
Alex Moazed (00:19):
JOOR was just our number two in our top 50 B2B marketplace ranking, congratulations. We’ve loved tracking the story and the progress that JOOR has made, and it’s quite tremendous, particularly over the past few years with you at the helm of this very exciting company. Congratulations.
Kristin Savilia (00:42):
Thank you. Really excited to be part of this and thank you for taking the time to come speak with me, as well.
Alex Moazed (00:44):
Would love to hear a little bit of your background. You came from XO Group, what brought you to JOOR? What does JOOR do?
Kristin Savilia (00:53):
Sure. I was President at XO Group, which is parent company to The Knot. What my job was there, was the digital transformation of the wedding planning process. Planning your wedding, turning it into a digital and eventually marketplace experience, making it easy for brides or couples to connect with the vendors that they do business with. I was approached by the board of directors at JOOR during my tenure there and I was so excited by the opportunity, because first of all I came from the retail space. I was a buyer at Macy’s, Macy’s executive training program, truly a merchant at heart. When I heard what JOOR was trying to do, I just was really amazed and I wish I had, had it. Essentially, what JOOR is doing, is that we have digitized the wholesale buying and selling process. That process of getting on an airplane, flying to a trade show, or going to a showroom multiple times a year.
JOOR did two things. Initially we were a mobile first company and enabled you to bring iPads with you. That first step towards digitization was really about in the showroom or are the trade show, the ability to be digital when you made your item selections. What we then became, or I’d always been trying to teach the audience, was really about fully being digital. Unfortunately, or fortunately, it took a global pandemic to really have this part of our business kick in, which was the virtual showroom and true marketplace experience. Essentially, we are digitizing that process, taking a process that was predominantly done offline, and I think what’s really important to understand is, this is the moment of intent in the wholesale world where you’re making a decision of what to carry in your stores, or on your website. The fact that most folks had been leaving that to paper line sheets and Excel spreadsheets, is a little scary. That’s what JOOR has changed, we’ve turned it into a platform experience.
Alex Moazed (02:58):
Love it. By the way, this is no small company. At least from your last press release, or the last press announcement that I have, was basically from a year ago, December of ’21, where you were saying you had over 60% growth, which was bringing you to over one and a half billion dollars in GMV.
Kristin Savilia (03:21):
Alex Moazed (03:24):
Sorry, yeah. Each month. Is that the latest stat?
Kristin Savilia (03:28):
A little bit bigger now. We’re going to do $20 billion in GMV this year, wholesale GMV by the way, not retail. Retail’s obviously a lot larger. We have 400,000 retailers and 13,900 brands interacting on the platform.
Alex Moazed (03:45):
That’s amazing. Also, capitalization wise, your last fundraise was a little under $50 million and that was at a really strong raise in the low 400s of valuation, and that was summer of ’21, right?
Kristin Savilia (04:02):
Alex Moazed (04:03):
Right when you were just saying how you had the pandemic to really give you a huge boost to use all the technology and the tools that you’d been investing in long before then. Really well capitalized as well, right?
Kristin Savilia (04:17):
Correct, very well capitalized.
Alex Moazed (04:19):
It’s just such a powerful positioning. I guess it’s kind of funny, like who are you competing against? Because if we look at that top 50 B2B marketplace report, a lot of those other B2B marketplaces are mostly in direct competition with incumbent B2B distributors. When you think about who your incumbents were, it didn’t seem like there’s a bunch of existing distributors, or was it more that behavior change?
Kristin Savilia (04:55):
It was a behavior change. I think some folks would say we compete with trade shows, but we don’t agree with that. We actually help trade shows. JOOR’s positioning is that the approach of the industry really should be hybrid. Just like you as a shopper on the consumer side, don’t just devote yourself to go into stores and don’t just shop online. You do both, whatever is convenient for you in that moment, or has the best assortment, or helps you in that moment. We feel the same way about B2B in that, go to that trade show, because trade shows do still make sense, but also the ability to do it online if you can’t attend that show, or if you need more time than the three or four days the trade show has to do that shopping. We aren’t really competing with any digital player and again, we’ve been really firm in saying we’re not competing with the physical either, we’re enhancing it.
For example, we launched a product called JOOR Passport during the pandemic with the sole purpose of helping our trade show partners. We ended up hosting 60 trade shows, we transacted over a million dollars in the first couple of weeks actually, with those trade show events. All of those trade shows have re-signed with us, because they understand that digital is an extension of the physical. When they stop seeing us as competitors is when the business has got really good for the both of us. Today, whether you take our iPad to a trade show, or you can’t attend but you’re shopping that trade show from a distance, that trade show still gets credited with bringing together that connection. In that case, JOOR’s the facilitator.
Alex Moazed (06:33):
You’re really just helping to enable a lot of these traditional existing forums to connect and have them be a part of your ecosystem, which makes a lot of sense. The interesting positioning is also, if you look at your brands, whereas other marketplace models in your space, you have a lot of very premium brands. You have a whole spectrum of brands, but you have a lot of premium brands as well. It’s in clothing and textiles, but it’s also in other categories, right? That also seems somewhat unique in terms of the cachet that JOOR has with its over 9000 brands?
Kristin Savilia (07:20):
Actually, over 13,900 brands. What’s interesting about JOOR is we started in the hardest category, which is luxury. We started at the top and worked our way down. We didn’t work our way all the way down, and that’s intentional, because when you think about our audience, which we describe as discerning brands, brands who care about who’s around them and very much care about their distribution, is who fits in JOOR. If you’re a brand who doesn’t care about your distribution, JOOR might not be for you, to be frank, because we really do vet both sides of our audience. The brands that join us we make sure are established for the most part, or up and coming but have a good cachet to them, as you mentioned. On the retailer side, we do vet our retail audience. We have 400,000 retailers who we know will shop discerning brands.
We are, unlike others out there, a connections based system. Both parties need to accept each other to do business. When you think about what we’re showing at JOOR, it’s generally private information, especially for these discerning brands, which is their wholesale pricing and their wholesale assortment. When we’re showing those assortments six months early, six months before they’re going to hit someone’s selling floor. You can’t just allow anybody into your showroom and we really needed to replicate that type of experience digitally. Connections based is the way we did it, where we do vet both sides, but ultimately the brand says yes, I want to allow this small business or this large retailer into my showroom to see my products.
Alex Moazed (08:59):
It’s like what we would call more of a closed marketplace model, right? It’s not as open, race to the bottom pricing competition, which is what you tend to equate with marketplace, classically. It’s like you’re enabling both sides to connect, you’re giving them all the seamless buying experience and other tools, which we’re going to get to in a second, that you would expect to come from a nice digital procurement experience, but also still preserving the more one-on-one connections and relationships between supplier and buyer. Is that how you view it?
Kristin Savilia (09:45):
Yeah, it’s definitely a relationship business and you can still make new connections on JOOR. We happened to do about 400,000 new connections this year, but it’s a situation where the brand trusts JOOR to have vetted those retailers, and does their own review of the retailers’ profile and accepts them. We do still drive and make new connections, but it’s in a more controlled way.
Alex Moazed (10:08):
It’s kind of like open door, right? Saying here’s technology, run your restaurant business, and then they’re able to bring you new diners. Then they might have a different monetization model for the demand that the platform is bringing to the restaurant, as opposed to the existing relationships that people are already calling up and booking a table. Is that a similar mapping to how you guys are thinking about structuring those different channels of value?
Kristin Savilia (10:46):
We’re probably going to be headed in that direction. Right now our monetization, that’s included, you can meet new people on the network. But as we further develop our marketplace capabilities, definitely we’ll be looking at models like that, that make a lot of sense.
Alex Moazed (11:02):
I just love scrolling through your website. You look at this website that you will provide to brands and all the technology that you’ve put around these virtual showrooms, and all these things. It’s pretty awesome.
Kristin Savilia (11:21):
I think what’s distinctive about JOOR is that marketplace is only one segment of our business, which you are alluding to. We started out on what I’ll call the enablement tools side of the business, which I will stand here and argue having built both, in many ways it’s harder. It involves being integrated with, in our industry, a hundred ERP systems, because nobody really owns the ERP space on the brand side. A hundred just gets us 90% of the market, so you can imagine the work you need to do there, which is a whole other problem for another day.
Alex Moazed (11:55):
Yeah, I see that. That is no small feat, I do not envy your engineers. That is not easy to do.
Kristin Savilia (12:07):
It’s not easy to do. It’s one of our secret sauces, is that we’ve already done it and we’ve consistently keeping up with it. The changes that everybody makes we have to keep up with, with the different APIs. It’s definitely a feat onto itself, which is why I think I found that to be harder than the marketplace side. What we did with that was we built enablement tools, all the tools you need to digitally do wholesale business. An example of course starts with the virtual showroom, the ability to show all of your items digitally to any retailer that you give permission to, to shop that showroom. We also have order management tools. Some tools people don’t even realize we have. One of our most popular is called Cancel Replace.
In the fashion industry in particular, styles get dropped. You show a certain amount of style six months in advance and you actually look for the popularity of those styles based on retailer feedback. Some of the styles you just decide not to make, but then you have a few retailers that have ordered those styles, and how do you notify them? Without JOOR, you’re on the phone an awful lot or sending an awful lot of emails trying to rescue the business, or salvage the dollars with something else. With JOOR you’re literally pushing a button that goes to the buyer that says, “Hi, Alex, we’ve dropped the white sweater, but we recommend this version of a white sweater that we are making. Accept or deny?”
We really salvage, on average, $1800 per style dropped just by using this one feature of our platform. What’s different of JOOR is that you meet on the marketplace and that’s great, but our relationship doesn’t end there, it starts there. You then take that relationship out of the marketplace, but still within JOOR’s ecosystem, to do business together. Unlike most marketplaces where you’re able to take usually that first transaction, maybe some repeat business, but not always because they break the network, they break out of the marketplace. That doesn’t happen at JOOR, hence the reason why there’s $20 billion of GMV going through. We capture that whole wholesale buying and selling experience.
Alex Moazed (14:16):
Yeah, makes complete sense. It’s a trend we actually see somewhat broadly in the overall ranking, is this theme of SaaS to marketplace, where you were able to solve these challenges with technology for one, or possibly both sides of the market, just by providing a great tool and software capability to solve their problem, and then marketplace came after. We’re seeing that in more and more places, I feel like, across the spectrum of B2B, which is a pretty interesting dynamic and a difficult shift. It’s interesting, you’re saying getting those SaaS products, relationships, and value prop really nailed was maybe harder? Is that what you were saying?
Kristin Savilia (15:06):
I found it harder and it just built this stickiness. It just took us a long time. JOOR’s been around 13 years and we’ve spent most of our years building up that enablement, we call it. The relationship, the integrations, and getting them to utilize our tools at a really high engagement. Marketplace came later and because we already had two engaged audiences, it was a lot easier. Whereas if you’re starting from scratch on just a marketplace, just the expense alone in getting the connections made, we haven’t really had to do that because we did it earlier in a different way.
Alex Moazed (15:44):
From an investor’s thesis on JOOR, if you can pull that together, that SaaS and marketplace model together, that’s the holy grail. We see marketplace companies in the ranking that then are launching SaaS businesses, for exactly the same reasons. They’re trying to increase that stickiness, they’re trying to solve more needs than just the demand that they’re bringing to their suppliers, and trying to more holistically solve the needs of either their producers or their consumers, or both.
Kristin Savilia (16:24):
Right, exactly what JOOR’s philosophy has been, and it’s why we continue to expand. We call ourself an ecosystem and not just a platform, because we’re always looking to bring in new functionality that we know our audience needs to really complete that wholesale buying or selling process.
Alex Moazed (16:43):
And I think that goes to the other thing I wanted to touch on, which is JOOR Pay. This was a big new product announcement, which is still pretty recent. What does that entail, how did that all come about?
Kristin Savilia (16:59):
Yeah, very excited about JOOR Pay. JOOR Pay was on my mind over five years ago when I joined JOOR, because I felt that the other thing to disrupt… we already disrupted this buying and selling process that was offline Excel spreadsheets, but when you look at how this industry pays, they literally are offline, no one really has systems. They’re on the phone, “Give me your credit card.” They’re breaking all sorts of rules with PCI compliance, or lack thereof, and trying to get items charged and shipped. I was passionate about figuring out how to embed payments on to JOOR and do this for them in a simpler way, that enabled them to get paid more quickly, which at the end of the day is what clients needed. The problem was, when you really look at the B2B space, it’s much more nascent.
Everyone’s doing the buy now pay later on the consumer side and we actually initially approached all the people you could think of right now who are very successful on consumer buy now pay later, and couldn’t get anybody to help us because our average transaction is $5000. You’re telling me you’re going to give my client $100 over three months was not going to help. We ended up doing a trial with one person, but it wasn’t really a B2B company, it was Stripe, which gave us a hint and a taste of, “Hey, there’s something here.” But we quickly realized after about a year of learning, that it wasn’t going to be the solution, and that actually we were going to have to build the darn thing, because nobody was really doing it the way we needed to.
On September 13th of this year, we launched JOOR Pay after a three-month beta period, a very successful beta period. JOOR Pay does what the industry needs, not only in difficult times, whatever we’re calling these times, near-recession or whatever we’re calling this, but really coming from my buying background it helps the industry all the time. The conundrum that you need to solve is, I’m a brand and I want you to pay me immediately. On the other side, I’m a retailer and I don’t want to pay you until I get the goods on my selling floor, and sell them. JOOR Pay solves this in a couple of ways. First and foremost, embedded payments.
Everything’s in the platform including invoicing, we also have an external link that you can put into any invoice like you’d expect, and you can run everything through a singular platform which is JOOR Pay, built in is our typical functionality like follow-up messaging and easier collections, because it’s all embedded. PCI compliant, so credit cards are held and retained on the platform, but the second thing that we do that’s super exciting, is that we’re offering Net 60 terms. This is at no cost to the retailer and there is a cost to the brand, but much less than factoring would be for them. If I’m the brand and I’m using JOOR Pay, Net 60 terms are automatically included.
I, the brand, am getting paid in three days, and the retailer is paying in 60 days. It’s solving that exact conundrum I opened with, of brands getting their money so they can build the product, retailers shipping, getting it to the selling floor, selling the goods, and then paying their bill. The third thing JOOR Pay does is about the global environment, but it’s about FX and how variable that’s been. A lot of companies struggle with global business because of the FX and having to figure out how to translate everything, and JOOR does that as well, embedded in this solution. You get these three big wins; embedded payments, Net 60 terms, FX in one solution and you’re paying a lot less than you would pay to do each of these things individually.
Alex Moazed (20:37):
The 130 plus geographies, that is such a much more unique characteristic given JOOR’s positioning than maybe a number of other B2B marketplaces. Yeah, they have international, but not at that scale.
Kristin Savilia (20:55):
Yeah, we actually transacted in 150 countries this year. As small as Turks and Caicos, we have a B2B transaction. I vacation there, so I was excited to see that. It’s amazing when I go places and I’ll see small businesses using JOOR. It just warms my heart just how defacto this platform has become and embedded in the industry it’s become.
Alex Moazed (21:23):
You’re in a perfect position to solve these two-sided challenges. You’re already touching both sides, payments is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, value added services that we see all B2B marketplaces heavily investing in this B2B buy now pay later that you talk about, Net 60, love that. Then those 150 countries, that is no small feat. What it sounds like is, there’s really no one-stop shop or one solution that could give you all of those capabilities. You had to build some of that yourself, you had to leverage outside partners for some of it. You had to actually put a few of these things together and roll it out yourself to actually meet the need that is specific to your buyers and sellers, right?
Kristin Savilia (22:19):
Correct. With $20 billion in GMV there’s a lot of interesting people wanting to join JOOR’s ecosystem, so we’re able to wield that power wisely and convincing people to work together, for the cause of betterment for the industry, for the community. We did that with JOOR Pay, we do it with a couple of things in our ecosystem. We were the first to bring in 360 imagery and 3D imagery into the network. There was a little bit of luck on this part, I have to admit. I was looking at a 360 imagery product before the pandemic and I had signed a deal in February of 2020, in my mind thinking this is going to take the industry a long time to adopt, but I want to be first so I’m going to do this partnership. Overnight, by March, it became one of our most popular products for a couple of reasons.
We do it with a company called ORB360 and their machines actually travel to the factory, or to the showroom, and do the photography of spinning imagery. The minute the photo’s taken it’s integrated into JOOR, so then you have an image that’s digitally available within JOOR, which means what? It means retailers, with the permission of the brand, can access that image and bring it to their website. We closed that usually painful gap of shipping samples, shooting the samples, color touching the sample, and somehow emailing the sample. We disseminated that whole thing into literally shot instantly in JOOR, go pull it. It became, again, one of our most popular products and we were first to market with it. I agree, there’s a little bit of luck there, I signed it with the longer term vision and it just took off. We still do it today.
Alex Moazed (24:12):
Everyone needs a little bit of luck. The imagery is amazing, I’ve been checking it out. I don’t have access to your procurement portal, but it looks pretty awesome. I’m sure I’ve seen it on other retailers’ sites, because that’s going all the way through, not just in the wholesale buying, but then is this stuff daisy chain? Or maybe not everyone does it, but some of the retailers could then put that on their e-commerce sites, too?
Kristin Savilia (24:45):
That’s exactly what they’re doing. That’s the instantaneous moment of it. Again, it’s always with the brand’s permission, they own the imagery. If a brand approves it, a retailer pulls from our site and uses it on their e-com site. That’s what really breaks down that usually several step process of getting time to site, it greatly reduces time to site.
Alex Moazed (25:02):
Then not only do you have 100 plus ERP connections, but then are a number of these retailers also then sucking product data and that stuff from you, to then federate into their e-commerce sites, as well?
Kristin Savilia (25:17):
Yes, we have 30 pro retailers who do this, so it is a paid solution at JOOR to upgrade to pro. A free retailer, which is generally the small 400,000 boutiques around the world, get a free log-in and are invited by their brands. They can go in and just purchase goods and there’s no integration required. The upgraded folks like Neiman Marcus, Goodman, Printemps, Selfridges, these are the folks who use JOOR’s pro solution. They go beyond that; they’re able to log in, with that log in they’re seeing the whole experience in a singular showroom rather than showroom to showroom, and can truly assortment plan. I want the best red sweater available right now, let me see all the red sweaters. That’s what the pro solution offers these guys. Then, the data is digitally brought into their systems and fully integrated, that they can instantly pull data without having to wait or get emails with the data. It’s just pulled from the platform.
Alex Moazed (26:17):
That’s awesome. In terms of that retailer lock in, or retailer stickiness let’s call it, that seems like a major proponent to that as opposed to saying why would you need multiple procurement portals, or why would you need multiple places to procure product from if you’re that merchandiser, that buyer at the retailer versus just using JOOR entirely, right?
Kristin Savilia (26:49):
Alex Moazed (26:49):
You have to bring them the product selection, which is one of the core marketplace values perhaps, but then what are these other additional hooks and integrations, or value add services like this pro program, that really helps to cement that and say, “Yeah, maybe someone else has some one-off thing, but then it doesn’t really integrate, I don’t get the good imagery.” Probably wouldn’t even sell as well, even if the product is nice, but because you don’t have the merchandise ability of all the other things that come with it… it could still do okay, but it probably wouldn’t perform at the same level provided from that pro experience.
Kristin Savilia (27:31):
Definitely, and you get it quicker. Time to site is everything in this industry, especially in the e-com world. You can make better decisions because you have more data surrounding your decisions when you’re in a platform or ecosystem like JOOR, and it’s a one stop shop to pull everything in. When you think about how we started on the retailer side, for years we were just a brand application. When we first approached Neiman Marcus, which I did six years ago, I went to them and said I have 200 of your brands already using JOOR, let’s go get the other 800 together. That’s what we did. We’re selective in the retailers we have come in, we don’t need every retailer to use JOOR in a pro capacity. It’s more about a network effect. Now we have about a 75% market share in luxury, so the majority of the luxury players use JOOR. Harrods uses us, as well; 24 Sevres, which is a company out in Europe uses it, so we have again-
Alex Moazed (28:27):
Dover Street Market.
Kristin Savilia (28:28):
Dover Street Market uses us, yep.
Alex Moazed (28:30):
Right by where I lived in New York, they were across the street. These guys are nice, they had nice cappuccinos and fresh orange juice.
Kristin Savilia (28:39):
Yeah, a great experience stuff, DSM, we love those guys. That’s what they see when they use JOOR. They know that when they do this one integration, and they’re getting access to the data of all their brands. To be completely transparent, I don’t have every brand, though I’m working on it, but for the ones I don’t have we offer a free solution where a brand and a minimum can upload their data into JOOR so that, that retailer can have a holistic picture. It’s a great introduction to JOOR for these brands that aren’t quite large enough yet, to invest in a wholesale system. We democratize this experience. We want to be holistic and to leave no retailer or brand behind. If you’re a retailer doing business, you need access to the data of everybody, so we facilitate that.
Alex Moazed (29:23):
Maybe the procurement happens in the existing channel, but at least then the product data and those things flow.
Kristin Savilia (29:29):
Alex Moazed (29:30):
Which makes a lot of sense. If you look at the procurement landscape for these larger retailers, other companies on our ranking are also offering them these centralized capabilities to procure. Maybe not for the products that you have, but for example cosmetics and personal care products. What do you see on the horizon, is there a consolidation, is there an expansion into other verticals to say, “How could we bring more of these things all under one roof?” Or for those mid to large size retailers that sell a variety of different things, is it going deeper, is it both? How do you see that future evolution of these larger retailers and where that’s all headed?
Kristin Savilia (30:25):
Yeah, we entered fashion home for that very reason, our retailers were asking us for it. We’ll always stay discerning. I’ll say it out loud, we won’t see JOOR working with Walmart, it’s just not on brand. Wonderful company, but just not on brand.
Alex Moazed (30:38):
All right, we have that on tape.
Kristin Savilia (30:44):
It just wouldn’t make a lot of sense. I don’t think that Saint Laurent or Kate Spade would appreciate if I suddenly had all the different Rubbermaid on my… great company, but it doesn’t make sense on our platform. The area that does make sense that we’ve been looking into, but it’s bought a little bit differently, is the beauty and perfume space. There’s an opportunity there, because a lot of these guys do carry those products in their stores whether they’re a small business that carries an eclectic assortment, or department stores, but it’s a different business.
I always enter new categories and new countries in a very controlled way. I do it either with an investment partner, with a trade show, with something that gives us a hook in so that we’re not going in one by one, but I’m going in and starting with 100 of them. You really have to build momentum, it’s hard to have one perfume brand on JOOR, and approach the second one. It’s a lot easier if you have a partnership and you have 100 of them on, and then you approach. That’s how JOOR does it and that’s how we’ll do it when we’re ready for the beauty space.
Alex Moazed (31:52):
Just to expand on that, because what we’ve seen just in doing this exercise, if you look at those cosmetic personal care marketplaces, they’re also catering to retailers. But the interesting thing with them is they’re actually not only helping you procure from the brand, but they actually have two core transactions, two marketplaces. A number of them actually started by connecting those up-and-coming cosmetic brands with suppliers, with chemical providers and ingredient companies. Then they said, “Why don’t we help you also connect to retailers that are going to buy your cosmetics and distribute your cosmetics to consumers?”
The retailers are really interested in actually seeing that end to end, actually seeing what chemicals are going into this, and at the marketplace through its technology, vetting, and curation, which you’re talking about with the curation you do on who can come on to JOOR. Similar kind of thing, now I’m the retailer, now I can trust that yes, my consumers love this personal care product, but also that it was made with these ingredients, and then that can flow into that page on their site to sell to consumers. Is that a theme or a trend you’re seeing in your categories?
Kristin Savilia (33:32):
In our space it’s more about sustainability. You would be more about organic probably in perfumes, but sustainability is really important. We’re a tracking mechanism for sustainability. We have not gone upstream and there’s no reason why JOOR, other than focus, couldn’t be a materials supplier as well, go upstream and be a marketplace there. As CEO I think one of the toughest things you do is there’s so many opportunities to say yes to, and saying no is probably what my real job is, and staying focused. There’s so much opportunity in what we do, that we’re not planning on going upstream to be a materials marketplace. However, capturing and verifying whether something is sustainable is something that I do see as part of JOOR’s ethos, something we should be doing.
That’s not something we would do alone, there’s partnerships we’re already exploring of people who are already doing this, and do we utilize what they’ve already built to verify that this brand has met these standards, and that these products this brand carries are, in fact, sustainable. When you think about where you’re at, and this is one of the main reasons we’re working with Selfridges. They’ve all made these missions statements that they’re going to be X percent sustainable by 2026, and then they all look at each other and say, “How are we tracking this? How are we going to do this?” Enter JOOR. We’re able to help them track that X percent of our assortment is meeting the sustainability standards that we have set. That’s definitely something that we are focused on and we see as important.
Alex Moazed (35:08):
Interesting. I love the sustainability angle. I forget who was talking about this. A lot of big companies, they make these claims that we’re going to do this-
Kristin Savilia (35:21):
Alex Moazed (35:22):
I’m sure they want to do it, but then how do they actually do it, and how do they hold themselves accountable or actually have a mechanism to execute? On that same theme, you see a lot in the clothing, textile, and shoes space around sustainability. Another theme, or another marketplace type not B2B, veering a little bit off but just curious to get your opinion on these second hand clothing marketplaces. I don’t think there’s necessarily a wholesale or a B2B angle there, but that also seems to be another area where there’s a big sustainability component to that.
Kristin Savilia (36:02):
Alex Moazed (36:04):
Etsy just bought Depop last summer, right around when you were doing your fundraise. That had a big number, a little less than $2 billion. I love that deal, I love that second hand space. Is that something that you’re also pretty bullish on, or not too familiar?
Kristin Savilia (36:24):
Definitely bullish on second hand space. I think it absolutely is the number one way that we can be sustainable as a community, for sure. These clothes are worn limited times, they’re in great shape, and give well love clothes to the next person at a discount. It democratizes luxury, it gets more people into luxury, and loving luxury. Now what you’re seeing, which I think is exciting, is that it’s very supported by the brands themselves. All the top brands have done something in this space. Their big thing is just about counterfeits. As long as it’s verified real, they’re okay with it now. A lot of them are even selling it themselves. We’re very supportive of it, I don’t know that I’ll see JOOR directly in that space. As an ecosystem could we someday have a partnership of giving brands an opportunity to sell second hand directly? Maybe. I would never do it myself, there’s enough companies out there, but more of an integration type relationship. But definitely whether JOOR does something or not, bullish on this space, for sure.
Alex Moazed (37:24):
Awesome. Some brands, maybe they don’t have a means to execute on it, to your point. Adidas, Patagonia, two of the big names. There’s others that are equally as big that I’ve thought are a little lacking in this space, we don’t need to go there, but it’s definitely an area that for some of the brands that are out in front on it, it’s pretty awesome to see. I agree with you there.
Kristin Savilia (37:51):
Alex Moazed (37:52):
Okay, we talked about a few things, but we have to focus. You’re the CEO, as you were mentioning, who knows what everyone’s calling it, recession, softening, near-recession, whatever’s in vogue these days. It doesn’t seem like anyone can agree on anything these days, but where is it that you would say is your focus, and priorities to bring JOOR full circle in a lot of these areas you’re talking about?
Kristin Savilia (38:23):
Yeah, it’s really about empowering brands and retailers to flourish. The number one thing I see going into ’23 is about transactional revenue and JOOR Pay. I believe that the conundrum of needing your money fast on the brand side and needing time to pay on the retail side is the industry’s number one problem, and our ability to help facilitate the solve for that will enable business to continue more fluidly than it has been. Definitely JOOR Pay and transactional revenue is our 2023 focus.
Alex Moazed (38:58):
Transactional revenue, I love the ring to that. I’m sure investors love the ring of that too, and I think it sounds like you have some plans. I won’t pry, but that certainly is the thing, if you can thread that needle correctly and have it be a win/win for both sides, then yes, huge unlock for the value prop, the business model, and all those things.
Kristin Savilia (39:25):
We agree and I think it’s the perfect fit. It’s not that we’re forcing something on an audience, it’s what the audience most needs. Product market fit, check, and now it’s just about execution, which to me is exciting.
Alex Moazed (39:38):
What did I miss, Kristin? Anything we should highlight about the space, or other initiatives that we didn’t get to?
Kristin Savilia (39:46):
No, I just would say if you’re a brand or a retailer listening, and you haven’t made that step to digitize wholesale yet, please do so. Also, I think one other thing I’d mention is that we did publish an industry trends report last week and wholesale is coming back. Any D2C business that is looking for other distribution methods, this is the least expensive, so consider it. JOOR can be very helpful there and you embark on the [inaudible 00:40:12]. All birds go to wholesale like they are, I think it really shows that any D2C brand can do that, and should be doing that. Don’t ever limit your distribution to one mechanism. If you’re wholesale only, do some D2C. I’m talking both sides of this now, but really vary your distribution.
Alex Moazed (40:29):
Yeah, I’m sure there’s a bunch of D2C brands that haven’t even ventured into wholesale waters.
Kristin Savilia (40:37):
And really there’s a digital version of that, which is a marketplace, but department stores are marketplaces, guys, they’re just physical ones. Don’t shut down on that idea either. We’re seeing a lot of GMV come through still for our department store friends, like we are for the small guys as well.
Alex Moazed (40:53):
And they’re investing heavily in e-commerce, right? They also are buying for both, right? That buying is both for their website and in-store?
Kristin Savilia (41:02):
Alex Moazed (41:03):
Kristin, thank you so much for joining us. Number two on our top 50 ranking of B2B marketplaces in 2022, such a great honor to have you with us on the show and we wish you all the best in 2023, and beyond.
Kristin Savilia (41:16):
Alex, thank you so much, and thank you for ranking us number two. It really is an exciting time here at JOOR. Appreciated.
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