Macy’s acquires a minority equity stake in b8ta
NEW YORK, NY – June 12, 2018 – Macy’s today announced an evolution of its commercial partnership with technology powered retailer b8ta. As part of its strategic focus on enhancing the in-store customer experience, the company will leverage b8ta’s best-in-class software platform to scale The Market @ Macy’s, becoming strategic partners in this ‘retail-as-a-service’ model. The Market @ Macy’s is the company’s experiential retail concept launched earlier this year. Macy’s has also acquired a minority equity stake in b8ta.
“Macy’s is in the experience business. We’re always looking for new formats that allow our customers to discover and connect with our products and services in-store in a way that drives engagement with our brand,” said Hal Lawton, president of Macy’s. “We’re pleased to deepen our partnership with b8ta that will provide the technology engine for The Market @ Macy’s. This will allow us to scale The Market @ Macy’s concept faster, furthering our goal of bringing more excitement and fresh experiences into our stores.”
"At b8ta, we believe physical retail will thrive as a platform for discovering new products and brands. Macy’s was the best partner for b8ta to scale our pioneering retail-as-a-service model to a breadth of categories like apparel, beauty, home, and more. With b8ta’s software platform and business model, product makers can go from solely selling online to launching their products with Macy’s in a few clicks. Our platform makes it easy for makers to deploy, manage, analyze, and scale amazing offline retail experiences,” said Vibhu Norby, CEO of b8ta.
Launched in February 2018, The Market @ Macy’s, currently open at 10 Macy’s locations nationwide, helps emerging and established brands reach new audiences. Each shop brings customers a rotating selection of unique offerings in apparel, accessories, beauty, entertainment, experiences, decorative home, stationary, technology, and gifts.
b8ta will customize its technology platform for Macy’s, providing brands a seamless and more automated experience when signing up to participate in The Market @ Macy’s. The customized software platform will serve as the driver for managing the rotating brands and experiences and scaling The Market @ Macy’s concept to new locations. In addition, b8ta’s ability to attract new products in the home and consumer electronics space will provide a big opportunity for bringing exciting new product categories to select Macy’s stores.
Over the next year, The Market @ Macy’s will test new size format spaces powered by b8ta’s technology and will expand the size of some of the existing pilot locations. Plans for future growth of the concept powered by b8ta are underway.
The partnership with b8ta along with the recent acquisition of STORY, is the latest example of Macy’s strategy to evolve its stores with more experience-based concepts and create a portfolio of unique relationships that will drive customer engagement across its store base.
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Macy's, the largest retail brand of Macy's, Inc., delivers fashion and affordable luxury to customers at approximately 650 locations in 44 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam, as well as to customers in the U.S. and more than 100 international destinations through its leading online store at macys.com. Via its stores, e-commerce site, mobile and social platforms, Macy's offers distinctive assortments including the most desired family of exclusive and fashion brands for him, her and home. Macy's is known for such epic events as Macy's 4th of July Fireworks® and the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade®, as well as spectacular fashion shows, culinary events, flower shows and celebrity appearances. Macy's flagship stores -- including Herald Square in New York City, Union Square in San Francisco, State Street in Chicago, Dadeland in Miami and South Coast Plaza in southern California -- are known internationally and are leading destinations for visitors. Building on a more than 150-year tradition, and with the collective support of customers and employees, Macy's helps strengthen communities by supporting local and national charities giving more than $52 million each year, plus 153,000 hours of volunteer service, to help make a difference in the lives of our customers.
For Macy's media materials, including images and contacts, please visit our online pressroom at macys.com/pressroom.
Founded in 2015 by Vibhu Norby (CEO), Phillip Raub (President) and William Mintun (COO), b8ta is a software-powered retailer designed to improve the customer and maker experience. b8ta operates flagships stores throughout the US -- including San Francisco, New York and Santa Monica with the mission of helping customers discover, try, buy and learn about new products while empowering makers with a simple retail-as-a-service model that puts them in control. Earlier this year, b8ta launched Built by b8ta, a service model which further expands upon retail-as-a-service, by helping to build and operate flagship stores for emerging brands.
Orlando Veras, Macy’s
Blair Rosenberg, Macy’s