EP11: Boosted Commerce’s Adam Epstein on the Future of Acquiring Amazon Businesses
In this episode, Adam Epstein, VP of Mergers and Acquisitions @ Boosted Commerce talk about building a Top E-Commerce Brand House by Buying Brands Globally, from the US to China.
Raphael: Hello, everyone, and welcome to episode eleven of the DataHawk eCommerce podcast, today, Prateek and I have a very special guest, Adam Epstein from Boost eCommerce. Adam, how are you today?
Adam: I’m doing great. Thanks for having me.
Raphael: Of course. It’s such a pleasure for us to have you. Pat, how’s it going on your side?
Prateek: Not too bad. Thank you. It’s a real pleasure for me to speak with both of you today. So, Raphael, thank you for having me, and Adam, it’s a privilege and it’s an honor to be able to speak with you for sure.
Adam: Yeah. Looking forward to it.
Raphael: Again, Adam, thank you so much for being on the show today. We’re very excited to dive deep into what you do and also why you do it. We have tons of questions for you. I hope they’re good questions. I really hope so. Boosted, for those of you who don’t know, is a CPG, a consumer packaged goods platform, focused on accelerating the growth of beloved consumer brands. They do this by acquiring, investing in, and growing third-party seller businesses across Shopify and Amazon FBA and through original product development across verticals that they believe offer exceptional opportunities. It’s very exciting to learn more about Boosted and how you can change the lives of FBA merchants. But before we dive into all of this, maybe, Adam, you could give us a little background on how you got started into this space.
Adam: Sure. Well, you did a great job of introducing us. What I like to say is we’re trying to be the Proctor & Gamble or the Johnson & Johnson of the 21st century right? So, we have the Boosted umbrella up top, but we’re buying up a lot of acquisitions while at the same time growing organically through the businesses we already have to build up a portfolio of brands. And we’re starting on Amazon and Shopify, as you mentioned, but ultimately, we want to be where the consumer is. So, our expansion plans evolve all marketplaces. One of our two co-founders is Charming Charlie. So, we have brick and mortar experience and it’s tough right now. But ultimately, what brands we get towards brick and mortar. So, really giving the consumer what they want, where they want it is our ultimate goal. And that’s across a bunch of verticals and we can get into that later. But personally, I have kind of a boring finance background. So, I did investment banking for a couple of years, went into investing in business school, got the Itch for entrepreneurship at business school, but still went back into private equity afterward because I couldn’t find the right fit. And then talking to Keith and Charlie, our co-founders here, there are not too many opportunities that have the tailwinds that you see in the Amazon ecosystem right now. While I can use my skill set of acquisitions and invest at a startup that’s growing inorganically, right? So, all of that combined, while getting some of that start-up experience and learning a bit more in the operations side as well. It’s just an opportunity I couldn’t pass up to serial, experienced entrepreneurs and our founders who have co-founded between them more than ten businesses that they’ve either currently owners successfully exited. And it was just an amazing opportunity that’s only been accelerated since I joined right before COVID. So, things have moved quickly and the industry has experienced tremendous growth at an incredible pace and it’s really fun to be a part of it right now.
Raphael: Nice. Um,
Prateek: Go ahead, Raphael. Sorry.
Raphael: No, go ahead, please.
Prateek: I was just going to ask Adam, on a day-to-day basis, what does your job entail as VP of Mergers and Acquisitions? Does it mostly entail playing golf and striking deals as we see on TV? Or is it more about just crunching numbers sitting behind a desk? What does it entail?
Adam: Yeah, that’s part of the fun part of the job, right, is every day is different. Most of these businesses are we’re looking at businesses between a quarter-million to a couple of million dollars of **. So, it’s not private equity or investment banking where I’m flying around the United States, stocking, dispersing people on the golf course, right? It doesn’t make sense. A, generally, but B in COVID times. So, it is a lot of sourcing, but that’s primarily done over the computer now. Zoom has changed everything, including us doing this podcast right now over Zoom. That’s kind of the way of the world right now. I think as things open up, we’ll certainly start traveling again and probably more in-person meetings. But the cool thing about Amazon in businesses is there are sellers all over the world, right? So, we bought a business from somebody in Pakistan. We bought a business from somebody in Israel. We’re talking to people in China right now. We’re talking to people in India. So, it’s not just US-based sellers. We’re primarily focused on the US and Europe marketplaces, but people sell in the US marketplace from all over the world. So that’s a really cool part of the job. But to get back, it’s a combination of sourcing. It’s a combination of due diligence, a combination of legal diligence, digging into the numbers, understanding, and working with our operations team to make sure we continue with the stability and the growth of the business. What are our key levers to kind of move forward? And the most fun part of my job is getting to talk and learn from so many amazing sellers who have started businesses and grown them from zero to over a million dollars in sales, typically in a pretty fast period. And it’s something that Amazon has enabled, which wasn’t there before, where you can have a one or two-person team. There are 50,000 businesses doing over a million dollars in sales on Amazon. So, it’s a pretty large network, and some of them just learn from YouTube channels or podcasts like this, and it fills up an incredible business, don’t know what to do with it now that it’s accelerated. So, we buy that product-market fit, right? They’ve already established that for us, and we push it forward from there to accelerate the brand.
Raphael: Let’s deep dive into boosted commerce now, if you allow me. My first question is approximately how many brands are you already operating today?
Adam: We are in the mid-20s at this moment, but we are growing very fast. I think we’ve got, not in too much detail, but about five or six in very late-stage terms right now with a lot more of that in the pipeline.
Prateek: Nice. So, Adam, is there a specific category that you guys tend to focus on? That’s the first part of this question. The second would be is there a specific category or other categories that you think are maybe better bets or more lucrative than other categories out there?
Adam: For sure. There are two kinds of ways that we look at investments, right? One is the high growth opportunities, and some of those categories are a bit riskier, but also higher return if you hit it, right, in the stable categories, right? So, we have businesses in our portfolio for both as we think about kind of those high growth opportunities. Beauty, skincare is one that always comes to mind.
Prateek: CPG. Right?
Adam: Right, exactly. Whereas if you think about like a water bottle, right? A water bottle probably doesn’t have as many legs to it. But you also know that a water bottle is not going to have too much innovation, right?
Prateek: It’s H20.
Adam: Exactly. If you’re on the top of Amazon’s search rankings for water bottle, it’s fairly easy to stay there as long as you know what you’re doing and do it right, but it’s a lot harder to move up. Right? Whereas in skincare there’s always innovation. So, you got to continue to innovate with the product. But in terms of our categories, we’ll look at almost anything. There’s nothing that we see and we say no to automatically.
Prateek: Got it.
Adam: The two hardest ones for us are fashion and electronics because of the speed of change that we’re just talking about. And some of that is also SKU rationalization as we look for businesses that have some SKU concentration and then we have diversification across the portfolio, right?
Prateek: Yeah, and maybe also returns, right? When you talk about fashion and stuff, the return rates are super high, right? In those categories.
Adam: Absolutely. And then if you think about just a pair of women’s leggings, you have one woman’s leggings that have five different sizes and six different colors, and all of a sudden you have 30 Aces, one product, right? And that’s before you get into the shoes and the shirts and the different designs, et cetera. So, fashion is a little bit harder. We’ll do it, but it has to be kind of more of a staple fashion piece. Electronics, similarly, is much harder. iPhone Chargers is a great example. Change iPhone from ten to eleven to twelve, and you’ve got three different Chargers and you’ve got to ramp back up your product again, right? So those are the ones we tend to have some more difficulty with
Prateek: The risk of obsolescence, or wherever there’s a risk of obsolescence. Yeah.
Adam: Exactly. Then in terms of some of the ones we really like, I mentioned beauty. We actually have a joint venture with a ** company where we’re doing food and supplements in that joint venture, which I think is a differentiator from some of our competition. Looking at a lot of home looking a lot of pet and looking at a lot of baby / kid.
Raphael: Yeah. As a marketing guy, I was wondering how do the majority of your leads come to you today? Is it more like inbound or outbound?
Adam: Yeah, we have a three-legged stool, this is how I think about it, right? There’s brokers in this space and it makes a lot of sense to have brokers who help out and match sellers and buyers. But buyers have also gotten sellers have gotten a lot more knowledgeable about us as buyers out there. Right. So, there’s a lot of cutting the middleman out. Brokers certainly have basically work with brokers all the time. But there’s also people who know their business very well, who have their financials in order and are just ready to kind of do themselves. So, from that perspective, as we continue to grow and scale and get our marketing opportunities out there, we’re seeing a lot of inbounds. We also have a business development team that’s pushing outbounds, both from kind of a larger range but also very targeted at some of the categories I just talked about. So, all three of those are going at the same time. It’s again, a pretty amazing time to be selling your business. The market’s changing at a fantastic rate and there’s a lot of demand for these businesses. So, I would strongly advise anybody thinking about that on their Amazon business reach out and we can talk.
Raphael: Thanks. Just writing you an email saying like I want to sell. How do we do that? Okay.
Adam: Boost eCommerce.com? A little plug in.
Prateek: Adam, tell me something. When a brand comes to you and says, okay, we want to sell and you look at the brand, do your due diligence, and you’re like, yeah, okay, there’s an opportunity here. There’s a way to take this. There’s more runway here. We can scale this brand. It’s most likely because you see certain opportunities which that brand by itself could not realize, right? I’m sure you tell the guy, okay, look, this is what we’re going to do XYZ. We’re going to add more variations. We’re going to take your brand, let’s say, to other geographies, and this is how we’re going to scale it, or we’re going to improve your listings. We’re going to do XYZ sometimes. Don’t you think maybe when you talk about all of this with the brand owner, he can be like, oh, wow, jeez, thanks for all of this insight. Now, I don’t want to sell my brand. I’m just going to go and do all of this on my own. And I don’t want to sell to you anymore. How do you sort of balance that?
Adam: Yeah. Look, what we try to offer our sellers is a win-win situation. Right. So, most of our sellers are one to two-person shops. We’ll obviously talk to bigger ones as well. And we’ve seen double-digit employees. But when you’re a mom and a pop or a father-son duo, whatever it might be, time is kind of your biggest constraint. Right. So, it’s not like they don’t know. They’re actually excited to work with us a lot of times because they have all these new product development ideas and don’t have the time to launch them or they have international expansion. They know it’s going to work really well in the UK or Europe, but they just don’t necessarily have the expertise or marketing side of things or really inventory to a certain extent. Right. You’re just plowing so much money back into inventory, and then there’s a risk in an ROI on that money, which is different for a mom-and-pop versus a corporation like us. So, most of what we’re doing is saying, okay, you built this amazing business up to a million dollars of stuff, and we hear all the time to scale to the next level. I either need to make a massive investment that I don’t want to make or what we also hear a lot, which is great from our perspective, is I know exactly how to do it, but I need to go hire four or five people to do it. And I have no desire to manage four to five people. Right. A lot of entrepreneurs like building their businesses but don’t like building infrastructure. That’s great. We have a massive operations team that sits behind our M and a team that helps run these businesses. And we have the team expertise to scale to help grow the business and level. So, it really is a win-win.
Prateek: Got it.
Adam: You see a variety of reasons why people sell, but the most common is probably A, I’ve built this business to where I can take it, and I want to go start the next one because that’s what I like doing. I don’t like managing and scaling, or B, I’ve just plowed so much money into working capital because I’ve grown so quickly that I want to see a payday, right? Three, four years. They build something up and it’s time to kind of cash out.
Prateek: Super clear. Yeah.
Raphael: Yeah, super clear. I was wondering, would you buy a brand that only has one product, meaning do you buy a product or do you buy the brand or do you buy both?
Adam: We will only buy private label brands, right? But that doesn’t mean that it has to be a fully established brand if you have one or two products that are really killing it. What we’re actually looking for typically is four to five products a little bit higher that are doing 80% of revenue. And that’s because when you’re buying businesses of this size if you have 100 products, not only is it harder to operate for the size, but it’s also, you can’t really diligence which one is doing the best, right? So, what we call the hero SKU, where we’re looking for one kind of that is your main SKU that is the driver of the business and then obviously some ancillary ones from there. But we like that. Now, to your question on brand again, it’s kind of diversity across the portfolio, right? We have some products that we think about that are certainly Amazon products, and they’re going to stay on Amazon. And then we have some products that we’re like, oh, man, this is a massive opportunity to take it off Amazon, to move it into Walmart, to move it into Sephora, and also on the beauty side, to drive international growth, to potentially get into brick and mortar, right? So, as we think about our diversification across our portfolio, we’re really looking at both of them and we kind of have a thesis pretty early on as to which way this individual brand is going to go, right? So, we have a bunch of different levers. Each deal-specific lever we’re going to pull on. Each deal is also specific. How we think about returns and whether or not this is an Amazon brand or really a brand that can have sit on its own merits.
Raphael: Right. I like this hero SKU word. I love that first time I hear it. We’re looking for the hero SKU.
Prateek: Adam, tell me something. When you make an offer to a brand to purchase them, do you just say, okay, here’s a million dollars or whatever XYZ number, a flat-out purchase, or do you say, listen, let’s do a milestone-based approach? We buy your brand, and then we give you a payout over the next X number of months or years based on how the brand does under the umbrella. And then what are the responses you get to these kinds of offers?
Adam: Yeah. The industry is pretty common in how this comes around. There are really four different pieces to an offer. Right. Number one is cash upfront. Everybody wants cash, and cash is being four times the cash. The person is going to take cash all day long, right? Yeah. The sellers always trying to maximize cash as a buyer, to your point, we want to have some milestones, right? To say, okay, we’re in this together. So, the next part is a seller note is what we call it, which is essentially debt from the seller back to us, right? So, if we’re paying a million dollars and $750,000 cash, $250,000 is kind of a debt instrument where we’ll pay the interest on that debt for two, three years, and then we pay them the remainder after two or three years, right? So, it’s still guaranteed, but it’s just delayed guaranteed, and they’re getting an interest rate on it. The third one, which is actually more recent, is what we call stability payments. And that stability payment has kind of come from the COVID bump that has happened, right? So, everybody saw eCommerce. Not everybody, but a lot of people on eCommerce saw tremendous growth during COVID because everybody was moving to Amazon. Some of them are sustainable. Other ones, there’s a question about how crazy that growth was, and can you kind of maintain that growth? So, when we see that, we say, great, we want to pay you for what you’ve been able to do. But we also want some downside protection, right? Where all you have to do is stay flat or even be down just 10% depending on the deal, and you’ll get this additional payment coming out. But if the business goes down 30% because 19 was 150% below 20 and there’s a chance it goes back to 19, then we obviously want to cast some of that risk. Now, sellers don’t like that as much, right? Because it’s not guaranteed. But if they trust us, which we’re trying to do, and then build the relationship, it’s usually pretty frequent in our deals these days. And then the last one is an earnout, which is getting to what you were talking about earlier in terms of, hey, we want to share them outside of this business, right? We think we can scale it. You build something great to date. We want you to be a part of our success. So, as we grow, you’ll also grow, which usually looks like as we build EBITDA above the EBITDA that the company is going in at, we’ll give you a certain percentage, right? So, if the business is doing a million dollars and we get it to a million five in the first year, if we say, okay, you’ll get 20% of that upside and you get 100 grand on top of it at the end of the year.
Prateek: Super interesting. I’ve heard so many podcasts on this subject, no one’s explained this whole thing so well that there are four to five different approaches to purchasing a brand. Super interesting. Thank you. Yeah.
Raphael: My next question you actually answered earlier. It’s about the Chinese brands and the Chinese seller. The question was, would you consider buying a Chinese brand? But obviously, you are.
Prateek: In that case, Raphael, maybe Adam can talk to us about what are the challenges they face when they want to buy a Chinese brand.
Prateek: Language, culture, all of that.
Prateek: Compared to buying brands in America.
Adam: Yeah. It’s different everywhere, right? As I mentioned, Amazon has done an amazing job of bringing substantial wealth to entrepreneurs in a way that they probably couldn’t have built businesses before. China is a great example, where a lot of new businesses are coming from China. There’s also a bunch coming from all over the place, right? I mentioned tax time is one of the early ones we bought. There are obviously some challenges and difficulties, right? Some language barriers they use are WeChat over there, which is email. So, getting everybody on our business on WeChat is not, and then obviously doing a little bit more diligence on the products, right? What do these products look like? Where are the suppliers coming from? How stable is the supply chain in China? We have non-Chinese sellers who also use the Chinese supply chain, right? But how do you kind of get comfortable with that and then all over it? It’s not just China, but you got to really understand how they built up their brands, right? In terms of white hat, grey hat, black hat activity, what’s been going on, how they got there, what’s the history of the brand so you know what you’re buying, which is a little bit harder to get when it’s a business that’s in a different language and you kind of got to dig in that way. So, nothing stops us. I think there’s probably a bit more of the antennas up to make sure that we can dig in and understand everything. Just given.
Prateek: Adam, would you say the cycle is longer than in purchasing a Chinese brand versus purchasing an American one?
Adam: It depends, right. It really depends on the size, the scale, the complexity, et cetera. On an apples-to-apples basis, it might extend it a couple of days. Right?
Prateek: That’s it. Okay.
Adam: There are legal documents, et cetera. Also, I don’t think to date we’ve got a business in China without using a broker. Hasn’t been a surprise here. If we do, it might be, but we’re typically trying to close in 30 to 45 days. The quickest one we’ve done was ten days, which was a lot of fun for me.
Prateek: Like a Chinese brand? Ten days with a Chinese brand?
Adam: Ten days in general. Not a Chinese brand that was actually Puerto Rican-based brand. But US seller, it goes pretty quickly in this industry and you rely a little bit on the reps and warranties and the contracts to protect you. But that’s kind of the nature of the piece, right? We’re not million-dollar eco businesses. They’re not these super complex, crazy structures. Most of the time. Sometimes we still see that where you can kind of dive in and diligently. We know exactly what we want to get to, right? We kind of recognize or evaluate the key risks that we need to mitigate and also the key growth opportunities pretty fast and then just dive into those key points to make sure we understand them and know what we’re buying.
Raphael: Cool. Super clear. Is your office crowded with products? Like, a product that you tried before buying the business?
Prateek: Free samples and stuff.
Raphael: Free samples because you have to trade products, right?
Adam: We’ve got all types of products all over the place. I’ve got a drawer in my house with products all over the place when we’re buying products. My girlfriend, the drawer needs to get bigger.
Prateek: So, Adam, you talk so much about due diligence and all of that stuff. Let’s talk about the risk element here. So, I see that for most of these FBA aggregators, it seems like Amazon is, let’s say, the bread and butter in the sense Amazon account for the vast majority of the sales. And, considering you’re leveraging Amazon, how would you describe the risk element here? Because Amazon keeps changing rules like MSN and this and that. How would you describe the risk element here?
Adam: Yeah, I think we’re the first to acknowledge there’s platform risk of Amazon, but there’s much more upside associated than the risk associated with, right? I want to say that. And, when I think about that, it gets de-risked by having a portfolio of 100, 200, 300 brands as we continue to scale. Because Amazon at the moment is not going away, right? The likelihood that they take down one brand for any reason is not zero. But the likelihood of them taking two to 300 brands down at the same time is fairly uncommon, almost zero, right? Unless, like a boosted or the aggregators, we do something that is against their terms. And as long as you stay within the white, hate, or add area, that becomes a lot less likely to happen, right? So that diversity is helpful. It’s also why we can buy businesses that we’re buying is because Amazon’s allowed these entrepreneurs, which we’ve already talked about, to start them. Right. But another way to de-risk it, how I started off is we want to be where the consumer is. So, we’re starting off on Amazon, we’re growing Amazon businesses. But how do we turn our portfolio and bring that to other marketplaces? How do we ** and Shopify? How do we think about international expansion even within Amazon? So, you’ve got the UK, the EU, the US, Canada, Latin America. So, there are ways to diversify across it. I think Amazon, and part of why our business was started in 2020, is Amazon has also done a great job of giving a platform for third parties where they’ve spent a lot of money around fraud protection, around helping the consumer, and that also helps the business like us, right? Because it’s going to weed out some of the players who are just here to make a quick buck and really not trying to help the consumer out. I think we look at Amazon and we think about it as a relationship. And as long as we’re helping drive additional value to the consumers that are in Amazon, it’s friendly, it’s not full, right? So that’s really how I think about it. There’s a ton of room on Amazon. There are millions of businesses. There are 4000 new businesses started every day. And all we’re doing is help improve the experience for the consumer at the end of the day.
Prateek: Makes complete sense. Thank you. Yeah.
Raphael: Okay, the go-ahead for the next one, please.
Prateek: Which is, okay. You know how Amazon tends to launch their own versions of best-selling products under their own brand umbrella on Amazon. Is it Amazon? Sorry. The future of online retail is that Amazon or the anti-Amazon Alliance? Because I’ve heard of this thing called the anti-Amazon Alliance, which is Walmart, Shopify, and all of these other guys sort of partnering because they’re like, listen. We don’t want to compete against the people who use our platform, whereas Amazon wants to do that as well. What are your thoughts on that?
Adam: I think there is definitely room for more than one player, right? Amazon’s an 8000-pound gorilla in the room. And we looked at Walmart, for example, and we see Walmart probably where Amazon was ten years ago, right? And if you asked anybody, would you go invest in Amazon ten years ago knowing what you know about Amazon today? I think 99.9, if not 100 out of 100 people would say yes, right/ So that’s how we kind of think about it is again being where the consumer is. How do we play within the eCommerce ecosystem? Right? So, Amazon is a huge part of that. And we love the partnership and we think about them as a friend. Are they coming out with some of their own products? Obviously, they are. Their Amazon products and Amazon basics are obviously something we think about, but typically don’t even time in the top three or four risks when thinking about a business, right? So, there are some categories that make more sense obviously, there’s a lot going on with monopolies and the like within the ecosystem and not only Amazon but eCommerce in general in the US. But I think, again, when you think about it, Amazon has made a system where they’re taking $.30 to $0.50 on the dollar in FBA, but still leaving room for people to have 30, 40, 50% margins. So, it’s a win-win scenario. And Jeff Bezos himself said not this quarter, but a couple of quarters back, a third party is kicking our first party’s ass.
Prateek: Kicking our butt. Exactly. I remember that.
Adam: That’s why we changed that. You have no inventory risk, you’re getting a nice little payday.
Prateek: If you just think about the big numbers. If they’re doing let’s say if the third party, the 3P marketplace is generating 300 billion annually in sales just from the referral fee, they’re making 15% of 300 billion. That’s 45 billion for nothing.
Adam: Yeah. Not quite for nothing, but for bringing billions to my wallet.
Prateek: Did you get the idea? Go ahead, Raphael.
Raphael: Does Boosted, well Amazon too, Walmart, own online website offline?
Adam: Yes. So, we do for sure. Right now, we are primarily concentrated on Amazon, but we have, depending on the business that we talked about earlier, we have on Walmart. We have definitely, most of our businesses almost all have a Shopify presence. We’re also thinking about Amazon internationally. We’re thinking about depending on what business we have in our supplements category. Can we get on to Hire? Can we get into Vitamin Shop? Can we get into GMC? Right? So, it depends on the business, but we are Amazon-focused and kind of proliferating from there.
Raphael: Yeah. IPO plans maybe. Wanna talk about that?
Adam: We’re always looking to raise capital and thinking about it. That’s what I will say.
Raphael: Cool. Yeah. Regarding your use of DataHawk, of course, I want to put in value a little bit of our software because you’re using it. So, I first want to know how did you hear about us? How do you find us, and how do you use DataHawk on your day-to-day tasks? Maybe not you personally, but Boosted as a whole?
Adam: Yeah. So, Boosted was already using DataHawk before I joined. I think our co-founder, Keith Richmond had met up with Ahmani. I don’t actually know how they met each other, but it’s been around for longer than I had. I was employee number two, but we use it in a variety of ways. On the M&A side to where I head up, we primarily are looking at keyword research, et cetera, using it, right? So, as we look at a new brand, how do we think about what keywords they’re ranking well in. What have they done historically? Where is that moving? What’s the volume around that keyword? And looking at other keywords in a category where maybe they’re not ranking as well, bringing that all together, saying, okay, if this is business three or this business is third on the keyword and we’re fifth if we can move up third or fourth, what does that do for our, how do we grab that? It’s a lot around keyword research. I think our Ops team probably uses it even more than we do at this point. It started off on the M&A side, but the value that DataHawk has brought has again made itself valuable across our team.
Prateek: Yeah. Something I wanted to ask you, Adam, is coming back to the business side of things. Do you think the future of Amazon selling essentially belongs to brands with really deep pockets? And let me explain this and try to stay with me. It’s a long question. Amazon essentially favors, let’s say, products when it comes to visibility, products with ratings and reviews, and things like that. So, when a new market opens up, something like Poland or Sweden, do you think big brands, let’s say Lindt or even, let’s say Boosted eCommerce with big lots of brands under the umbrella with deep pockets, do you think you guys have an advantage or an edge? You enter the market early on and you start selling your products and start advertising your products and build that moat around your products in terms of ratings and stuff. And in that case, maybe the guy who enters that marketplace one year from now, he’s going to have, let’s say, less visibility because that space has already been fortified by a bunch of other 5000-pound gorillas. So do you think back in the day, Google’s agenda was to make the world a better place, organize the world’s information. Now it’s all about who’s bidding the highest and shows up highest in search results. Do you think that’s where Amazon’s also heading?
Adam: Yeah. Look, at the end of the day, particularly as a public company, it’s a capitalistic society we live in. So that there’s certainly a part of that. And I think having a first-mover advantage is huge, right? Look at Anchor, which was not private equity back, but is now a public Amazon business.
Prateek: A 10 billion. Yeah.
Adam: So, pretty amazing what they’ve been able to do. But the other side of that is I think and I’ve said it a few times now, ultimately, what Amazon is trying to do and most marketplaces try to do is be appealing to the consumer, right? Because, if you’re not appealing to the consumer, the consumer is not going to come back, and then it doesn’t mean anything because you’re not going to be able to sell anything. So, from that perspective, how do the little guys compete? I think it’s kind of what you’re getting at.
Adam: My answer is to give the consumer what they want. Right now, it might be a little bit harder to compete when you’re looking at some big conglomerates coming in and absolutely having some more data and having some more money, et cetera. But if you have a product and you know how to work within the Amazon ecosystem, which I think is another very big variable here, Amazon is almost like its own language, and people who have been there for a while really know how to do it and can drive value both from a PPC standpoint, from a ranking standpoint, understanding the algorithm from the outside in, right? So, if you have the right product and you have the operational experience, then I think you can continue to compete, right? But it’s going to be harder and it’s going to be harder on us, too. That’s the nature of the beach when there’s a lot of time in and everybody can kind of make money, who’s got the best product, who’s giving the consumer what they want, and why are they going to come to you?
Prateek: Perfect answer. That’s all I have. Yeah.
Raphael: Pat, any other questions you want to?
Prateek: No, that’s all I have.
Raphael: Well, it’s great. Adam, do you want to say one last word to the people, the FBA sellers, any Amazon professional that is listening?
Prateek: Sell to Boosted.
Raphael: Sell to Boosted.
Adam: Yeah. I appreciate you guys’ time, you know, it was fun. As we think about our differentiator within the ecosystem, there are a lot of players. We have a team behind us that is a hodgepodge of great experience from people who used to work on Amazon’s supply chain team to our founders, who are a combination of consumer guys and digital marketing guys to help in that perspective, to our President, who used to run Textile, which is a billion-dollar-plus Econ business. So, what we’re trying to do is continue to build upon the success you’ve built today and we’re trying to do it in a way of partnership, right? We want you to participate in our growth, in our success, in our profitability. So, we look at it as a partnership. We actually will be coming out very shortly, hopefully, next week with an announcement about how that partnership is even larger than just buying your business. So, we’ll be on the lookout for that. But what I would say is if you’ve been thinking about selling your business, reach out to us again, at boostedcommerce.com. You can reach out directly at [email protected] or we have [email protected]. So, a lot of ways to find us. If not today and you’re thinking about it in a year, let’s start the conversation and we’ll give you a good sense of valuation and what you should be thinking about to help maximize value.
Raphael: I love it. Thank you for your conclusion. Thank you for being on the show today. Thank you for your time really. Pat, thanks a lot also for being here as always.
Prateek: Thank you, Raphael, for giving me this opportunity, and Adam really, again, it’s a privilege and it’s an honor to be able to speak with you, super insightful episode. I’m going to relisten to this a few times because you had some incredible answers. Thank you so much for that.
Raphael: Thank you, guys, for your time. It was fun. Make sure you subscribe to the DataHawk eCommerce podcast on your favorite platform, so you get notified of every new episode that comes out. See you next time. Bye-bye.
Prateek: See you. Bye-bye.
Adam: Take care.