Founder Fireside: Curated and Forerunner Ventures

Hey Eddie hello audience Um you know so I've been thinking about It e-commerce had such a boom during the Pandemic Um Eddie how fast did you have to scale Your business Well at first we had to slow it down Real quick when the pandemic started Because we weren't sure if we were gonna Survive or not um the pandemic was crazy At first like it was literally how do You extend Runway right when we first Didn't know it was going to happen and Our business is primarily focused in the Outdoors and that obviously saw a ton of Demand Um on curated we help people make high Consideration purchases so think Someone's gonna buy a mountain bike a High-end coffee machine a set of skis And during the pandemic people were Buying Outdoors equipment and that stuff Was historically sold in stores so our Demand went through the roof and so it Was definitely lots of ups and downs but It was good for us yeah so it's quite Interesting because you also worked with Physical retailers during the time so How did your relationship with them Change The only way to change is we just did a Lot more business with them so our Marketplace we work with Brands directly And retailers and with the retailers

That we had worked with in the past they Were able to help us with all the access Demand we were getting but it was just More business with them but nothing Changed and are there any challenges That are still lingering from the past Two years that you're dealing with yeah For sure so you went from a world where Supply chain right like you couldn't get Product right everything was there was Part issues and so it was difficult to Get final products to now where you have An oversupply right and so we've gone From a place where it was hard to get Inventory and our experts would help People figure out like well this is a Substitute that could work for you to a Place now where brands have way too much Inventory and we're another place for Them to be able to to move their goods And so we're using this as an Opportunity to pick up a lot of Brands Yeah yeah so what do brands do about Oversupply It's tough right because if you're a High-end brand and we work with So the stuff that we saw in curated is Not typically direct a factory or Anything like that it's well known Established brands And so one of the last things they want To do is start discounting stuff because It erodes the brand and with curated We're able to then create an additional

Channel for them to be able to sell Without them having to be Discounters But it is a tough time for Brands right Now because Um sales move inventory but it also has Long-term negative impacts And to kind of loop Kirsten who is one Of your investors how did conversations Between you two change Um like during the pandemic and how do They compare to now during the economic Downturn Problem one problem you want to go first Or you want me to go first I'll let you go first Um One of the things about one of the Things I love most about being an early Stage investor is the opportunity to Form a relationship with a Founder Before they've built out a whole team And to really you know be part of that Process and hopefully be one of the First second or third phone calls to Talk something through Um and you know at every step of a Startup Journey you're you're dealing With decisions that Have multiple impacts ongoing and I Think that you um You know hope to Um have to take those things seriously At every point in time because in General you're dealing with limited

Resources to try to have like big Outcomes or big impact And I think you know Eddie and I have Always had really candid open Conversations and conversations that Have been rooted in a shared ambition For what the business can become But a healthy debate around how do we Balance kind of you know these limited Resources to try to achieve the biggest Outcomes or the most proof points Against the business And so I think it's less about how the Conversation changed it just became a Bit more intense because there were more Moving parts and more uncertainty to try To navigate during that time period yeah What I would say to that is like We went from talking weekly to every few Days and sharing data points and Probably going a little bit deeper into Like financials of the business But I think that in general like your Investor should always have a very clear Understanding of your company and what's Going on the good and the bads so it Wasn't a matter of like the tone of the Conversation changing the questions did Some but Um you know I always think of you know a Good investor as an additional Co-founder and so they have to know Everything Yeah and to talk a little bit more about

The investment founded relationship Between you two where did you both meet Actually we had a common friend who Introduced us somebody who had for two Years leading up to the introduction Um spoken highly of Eddie Um teased me about this idea that he was Working on that he believed that I would Be really excited about so the Anticipation was really high in advance Of having a chance to sit down with Eddie and talk about curated and talk About what his vision for the future was And we had a meeting in my office that I Think like any first pitch meeting was Probably scheduled for half an hour but We I I think there was a lot of energy And enthusiasm on my part for both what Eddie brought to the table and his Background and how he was leveraging That for this business and what the Ambition was for the future that half an Hour conversation turned into like two Or three hours Yeah and I guess Eddie what made you Really want to take a check from Kirsten In Forerunner Um cover yours for a second uh So I mean there's two parts of this one Is um I'm a really big believer that whoever You're going to go into business with Whether it's a co-founder or as an Investor you're going to be in a like

Five ten year relationship with that Person and so you really have to figure Out like do you two work together like Do you want to be working with this Person for the next 10 years The second thing is is like can this Person add value for the next 10 years Right because Um the companies that go through Different stages and need different Advice at different points whether it's At the bottom of the pandemic or the Growth stage of the pandemic or what We're dealing with today And so we went through a list of kind of Really curating for lack of a better Term who we wanted to work with and like Kirsten obviously was the top of that List Um and so uh and at the time like it was A bet I told our investors Um oh no my investors sorry are my Co-founders actually don't want to meet With anybody else I met the person that Like I think I want to be in business With which was a big debate but I think It ended up being the right decision Yeah and just looping e-commerce back Into this the market has been slowing Down a little bit and I'm assuming that One reason you really invested into Eddie as a founder and the product was Because you really liked it and believed In it

Um Kirsten are you still quite bullish On the sector Um well I'm definitely bullish on Curated for sure Um I think that they're I think We are investing into change and new Models that are reshaping Industries so I think there's a lot of room for Improvement across the retail and Commerce landscape we've witnessed that Over the last decade as we've been Investing through Forerunner I think That change continues to evolve so There's you know as there's new unique Opportunities today so in general like Yes I think that the types of things We're investing in or where we think the Biggest changes are happening of course Those evolve over time Um how they evolved now You know foreigners been in business for 10 years Um and we've invested in you know Companies across the spectrum of Business to Consumer and um and B2B Companies but we have had you know a lot Of common themes across the Commerce Landscape since the earliest days of Foreigner and 10 years ago when we Launched the firm one of the thesis that Was kind of front and center Was the buyer is is that there's a new Revolution in Commerce that's being Driven by the buyer and it was really

About a new purchase Journey being Enabled through social media and through Digital access and this idea that Consumers had this new path to Discovery They had a new way of vetting products And they had a new expectation for that They should buy them and that really Upended the traditional wholesale retail Model suddenly wholesale businesses Became retailers that made retailers Have to think more you know specifically About what their value proposition was And from there a bunch of different Businesses emerged and different Business models and and different ways Of meeting consumer demand As we move through the cycle Parts of that continue to get refined Consumer Behavior changes again one of The biggest things that we've seen is That digital access has continued to Become more Dynamic and we're now in a Stage where there's an opportunity for a One-on-one connection And we call this like the Revolution Being driven by the seller and that the The space of the seller is no longer Just a big brand or just a retailer but It's a person selling something on Tick Tock and so if that's the case what does That mean for the business tools and Processes that enable that and so a lot Of the investing over the last couple of Years has been focused on that part of

The market too and then of course There's something like like Eddie's Business which is you know taking Principles that existed in offline Retail and thinking about how people's Behaviors and how people's preferences Have changed and reimagining them for a World where there's digital access and Comfort you know kind of shopping from Your home but you know I think really It's a it's about bringing it to life in A much more Dynamic way Amazon 20 years Ago or 30 years ago now invented kind of What is still like the common shopping Experience in general which is a Navigation and a category drop down menu And you go to a product page and see a Written review and I think the consumer Is ready I know the consumer is ready For a more Dynamic experience it's about How do you bring those to life and make Them into scalable attractive businesses And curated is One Vision for that it Takes the principle of having a shop you Know person in a shop that works there That knows the product that has you know In the case of outdoor goods for example A product Enthusiast somebody who's you Know maybe does it as a hobby on their Weekend who can really speak Passionately and connectedly about what The product is and being able to bring That into the shopping experience and Now we can do that in the digital realm

Where there's a tremendous amount of More access to that input Yes and kind of a similar question to You Eddie um in terms of what does the Economic slowdown right now mean for Curated and what consumer needs are you Anticipating or adapting towards right Now so I see the two things there one Um When you're a small player that's Growing quickly but you're a small Percentage of a market you can continue To grow even when there's a Slowdown and So even though we operate in categories That may be slowing down specifically Our business is still growing And then the second is is probably the Thing that we see the most today is Consumers are spending longer talking to Experts right like so the average person On curated is over 750 90 of our Purchases come via the assistance of an Expert and so the experts going back and Forth with over text over email with the Consumer And so we are seeing people take longer But they're still making the purchases I I think that would Slow down means is like if you're going To spend the money you want to make sure You're going to get the right thing but For us Um that's always been at the core of our Business people don't make half Hazard

Decisions when they're spending uh when They're making such a big purchase and In terms of the fundraising are you Planning on fundraising this right now Or anytime soon and are you hoping to Have um Forerunner that's what I'm about To ask Kirsten for some money right now Yeah exactly Um so The way that I've always believed that You should build a business is one to Always anticipate the worst like be very Very focused on building a truly healthy Business and very focused on unit Economics And so we're in a position right now Where like you know we'll raise when the Time is right but there's no need to Right now like I've got an incredible Team we're very focused Um you know it's it's it's uh You know obviously the markets are what They are today and so it probably would Not be the most opportune time to go Fundraise but we also don't have any Need to and to go back to talking a Little bit more about your relationship Um so what does you spoke a little bit About how weekly calls turned into every Few days what else goes into sustaining A founder and investor relationship I think it's having a relationship where Both of you can be really intense and Direct with one another and the other

One doesn't take it the wrong way Pearson calls me on my when she Disagrees with me on something and I Feel very comfortable pushing back on Her and not being worried that like if We're in a disagreement that it's going To impact for example future fundraisers What do you guys disagree on All kinds of stuff I mean it's in the Spirit of healthy debate you know I Think that when you're making a decision It's important to look at kind of all All sides of it and sort of you know Kind of have a rigorous conversation About what the the pros and the cons are You know every founder investor Relationship is unique Um I you know I I have the privilege of Being on 10 or so boards and having Close relationships I think with all of Those Founders they all take a little Bit of a different form factor or have a Different Cadence to them I try to think About like I try to respect the fact That Founders are busy they've got a lot Of pressure they've got a lot of people A lot of Demands on them it's my job to Figure out how I can be the strongest Supporting cast member for them Um I think Eddie and I share what in in Many ways in my is my version of an Ideal relationship where we have a lot Of easy quick conversations and I don't Mean easy like they're not rigorous or

Whatever but just like hey did you think About this or I read the other day There's no schedule where did you go for That I mean we're just kind of more in The flow and keeping it keeping it Current and keeping it very topical Oriented Um Yeah I mean I I I was trying to say was For example we don't have scheduled One-on-ones right it's just a text it's A quick phone call it's an email hey are You thinking about this I think just It's better to over communicate because When people don't know they assume the Worst and that's true of like your teams That's true of your investors and so There's no surprises I would prefer to Always know as much information as the Founder is willing to share or more than They're willing to share but you don't Want to feel like you are creating a Burden on a Founder who is otherwise Busy by constantly asking for Information so it is it is really great When you feel like you have a very open Dialogue and Um and that sort of keeps you connected Kind of on the on the deepest levels as Opposed to every couple months having a Check-in because that's not really being Close to the business and I think very Specifically what Kirsten does is again Calls us out on our blind spots so like

As a company we're incredibly strong on The technical side but there are other Parts of our business where we're just It's not as natural to the co-founders And so we either don't know it as well Or we don't invest in it into it as much And so she's constantly reminding us to Focus on those areas And Eddie spoke a lot about Um Picking the right investor so what are Some I guess green and red flags that Founders should look for when searching For an investor I mean by far what I tell everybody is Like don't get overly focused on Valuation right like at the end of the Day like it it's more of an ego thing I'm not saying that you should accept Terms that are just that are not fair But over one or two points of dilution Right people will go and run an auction Process and I don't believe that a Relationship is started on the basis of An auction I feel like you should figure Out who's the person I want to work with For the next five or ten years are they Really smart and do they think do I Believe they can add value and that's Who you should work with I think it's one of the challenges you Have is as you go into later stages you Have more and more people whether it's Your team or investors who also want to

See step ups and valuation and so it's Always playing with balance of again Like you want to make sure you get a Fair price but I think people get way Overly fixated on valuation right like I Want to become a unicorn I want you know Sometimes raising too much money right And more Too much money can be a bad thing in its Own way Um but I think that that's and and by The way like this doesn't apply to Everybody right like there's certain Businesses that are really hard to fund And unfortunately you have to take the Money you can get but I think that it's Much more important to find the right Person if at all possible over some of The other things that like the next day You don't even care about and I'm so Interested so what is one piece of Advice that Kirsten gave you that has Never left your mind I'm interested they're too ready Probably well not to put you on the spot Or anything I mean for starters we Changed the trajectory of the our Category structure and our Focus right So initially I mean the premise buying Curated is we connect consumers to Experts who can help give them advice And in the long term we want to be in All categories right we want to be able To help you do anything from not only a

Reselling you a set of skis we want to Help you plan your ski trip but you Could even imagine crazy things like you Want to buy an antique car and there's An expert who can give you advice on That Uh about two years ago we were in a Disparate categories we were helping People buy engagement rings right we Were helping people plan travel and Kirsten was like you guys need to focus And focus both because it creates for a Better business and it also it's easier Story to tell as it pertains to Onboarding Brands as it pertains to Communicating to Consumers and so we Made that change and this is one where You know to the point of a really Healthy relationship she you know I did Listen the first time it probably took Five times but at the end you know I Came to terms of the fact that like that Was something that we probably needed to Do and even though I didn't fully Appreciate and understand that at the Time it was absolutely the right Decision And Kirsten Um kind of going back to the initial Question I asked Eddie what are some red And green flags that you look for when Doing due diligence on a Founder right Now Um so let's I think you know there's

There are two main tracks Um when you're evaluating an early stage Opportunity one is a set of criteria That relates to the market the the Audience that they're targeting the Product that they have and what it will Take to bring it to Market and reach the Milestones and the other is really the Team there's a lot of things in that Front category to think through or that First category to think through and I Sort of put them up you know in two Buckets and tell the founders out Separately because at early stage Companies and really at any stage of a Company but certainly at the early stage Company Founders like highly critical And it's where we spend a lot of time Trying to get to know people trying to Understand like what's their vision for The future why did they decide to throw Themselves into this particular project How do they think about building a team How do they think about a go to market Strategy and you know things things that You can imagine people talking about I Think the other you know the one Specific thing that I always try to keep In mind is like what does this founder This founding team have that will make Them stand out in the competitive market That they're competing in you know you Like to think that you're the only Company trying something but very rarely

When there's a big open market there's a Big need there's a big potential is There only one company trying to break Through and kind of own the conversation Or own the opportunity and so it's you Know really I think a worthwhile Question to step back and say why is This team have an unfair advantage in Addressing this opportunity so for Example in the case of curated I think There were versions of similar business Models that also caught on to the or Founders that also caught on to the idea Of like hey I'm you know I used to go to A my corner store I'd find a really you Know well-informed sales associate that Would help me pick out my running shoes That was a great experience that store's Not around anymore now I'm kind of Having to struggle with going on Amazon And to see a product that looks the same I miss that one-on-one experience Wouldn't it be great if we could have That on online you know or similarly You've heard of you know a a brand or a Store that is is missing having the Right kinds of sales person in their Store and wants to think about how do They Um you know do something online where They can kind of extend the reach out of Their four walls and and add that Component to the business But in both of those cases for example

What might be missing is a real Appreciation for the complexity of what It takes to bring that to life for the Technology that has to exist to make it Something that is efficient and scalable Marketplace businesses you know are some Of the best examples of of Technology Being leveraged to even make a business Possible and and I think it's essential Because it is a business where you're Bringing two sides of the marketplace Together there's you know a take rate That is your your core business model But then there are all the things that You need to create efficiencies around And operate with Precision in order to Be able to make it a profitable business And and being able to have smart Technology in the case of curated that Matches experts to sellers that gives Experts enough information to enable Them to show up efficiently in Conversations and give great feedback The tools to do that the prompts to Communicate all of that stuff is like an Intense sophisticated Tech project and Eddie and his team are you know product People and Engineering people first and Foremost who I think we're really turned On by the opportunity in retail but like Their Learning Journey Um respectfully in a lot of ways was to Understand more about the retail Market You guys had real understanding of the

Technology and what you'd need to build It's not an understatement though Kirsten taught us a lot of what we know About retail like we at our core were Really smart at building Um technology where we understand Marketplace Dynamics very well but the Whole world of what brands think about What consumers think about you know how Do you how do you need to communicate With them a lot about came from Kirsten I mean it could be simple things like uh Email may seem outdated but it still Works really well because every team Wants to try something new and different But there are some Basics you have to Put in place And I think that the the key for our Business is like our business has been Attempted five or six times in the past And it didn't work out and the reason it Didn't was you have to get really good Tech put in place to get the Efficiencies required because otherwise In our case we're like if you think of The whole world's moving towards Automation right like we're trying to Replace people and we're going the Opposite direction we're putting people Into the process And the only way that you can afford to Do so is by automating a lot of other Parts otherwise you wouldn't be able to Pay those people well or at all and like

I'm not a believer that people ever want To buy a two thousand dollar mountain Bike with a chatbot they're always going To want to be able to like if they're Going to buy it they're either going to Do it in a store or they do it online Both in the context you want to talk to Somebody who's going to be able to help Them get the right thing we're just Trying to bring the offline online but There's a ton of technology that has to Get built to do that right and so for us That's been our advantage and then again Kirsten helping us with all things uh Retail And Tech you know just like Marketplace Dynamics but that was really what we Needed help most And I just want to do a little shout out To the audience that um we will be Taking q a after so if you want to scan The QR code and submit any questions That you have We will be answering them in a few Moments Um but next question I'm intrigued I Just want your opinions on these in Terms of the different shopping habits Of different generations and what you've Picked up shopping Trends noticing Online how different consumers shop what Have you been seeing Well Uh different generational Trends I think

That one of the most interesting Dynamics for us is that we have our Experts communicate via chat via text Via email or via calling and also via Video and it's very interesting like Older Dynamic older generation Calling works very well with but then With younger Dynamics oddly enough like Video works well but they won't pick up A phone call which I don't fully Understand Um Texting works really well with almost Everybody but I think for us We our business is less on like the Um because we sell more considered Purchases people spend like people spend Days weeks sometimes months chatting Back and forth with our experts like It's not like a quick five-minute Conversation and I buy something it's Nowhere close to that and so a real Relationships built and so the patterns That we see are probably very different Than E-commerce more broadly Kirsten would Probably have more opinions on that Um I think I honestly think it's like Less about Generations at this point I Think everybody's pretty you know most People are pretty far up the curb on Shopping you know 50 some percent of the Commerce done in this country happens on Amazon that's all digital so there's a

Lot of there's a lot of familiarity and Trust with that system one of the Evolutions that's really you know come Online and I I think in a big way in the Last five years is people being item Driven so they're like in the context of Doing X Y and Z they discover something Else and they get and they impulse shop Online and I think that that has Actually like continued to breed more of A culture of shopping which has resulted In a lot of shipping products back and Forth Um so and that that that's also another Demonstration of like people's comfort With it of just like I'll try it I'll Get it home I'll ship it back I think actually we're on a We might be past Peak on that and we Might be getting to a place where people Are like okay enough like I don't I Don't want as many boxes flying back and Forth that I need to be more thoughtful About it and I think that's the trend That like we're thinking more about what That might mean for the future yeah Because what is the environmental impact Of it it's terrible really yeah Yeah so it's you know different things Rule the Day at different times I think Like I mean come on we're going back 20 Years now but when you could first shop Online and get anything you wanted that Was magical and it opened you know it

Opened up access I think it made people Much you know kind of more liberal with Their shopping decisions as they started To become Um more inundated with messages and and And and product Discovery was happening In more ways more often and we've kind Of you know spent the last 20 years Becoming more and more and more addicted To shopping and I think the last two Years we've done a lot of consumer Surveying over the last you know year in Particular to kind of think about like What have people experienced in the last Two years that might stick going forward Or reshape Trends going forward and it's Interesting because every you know we All read the data everybody shopped a Lot while they were at home they Diverted dollars from travel or Entertainment to buying things for their House or for themselves to try to feel Better and I think at the end of all of That it's like having a big giant meal And feel like you over eight it's like Oh my gosh I bought too much stuff I saw One too many packages on my doorstep While there's also this you know Rising Tide of headlines around climate change Around pollution around the lack of Sustainability in the supply chain and So I think you know I think that's on a Collision path for people to check and Say you know what what really should

Underpin our shopping habits calling Corporate and but we haven't seen that In the numbers or the data yet What's interesting for us is we're the Opposite of impulse shopping yeah right Like we people don't buy three bikes Send to back right like I really Appreciate that about curated right I Think it's part of the experience if you Think about it there's non-discretionary Discretionary spending non-discretionary Spending is what you have to spend to Keep your life going the discretionary Spending is discretionary it's fun and There's been you know it's not just About getting and securing the item it's About the journey it's about the Research you do it's about the discovery It's about the chatting with friends About it and that's some of what's been Lost online like there's been new Elements of it you know tick tocks and Instagram and whatnot but like the Dynamic kind of back and forth hasn't Been hasn't been the same and I think Curated really brings that into the into The possibilities on digital where People you know you have great stories Of people experts and Shoppers becoming Friendly maybe even meeting to golf with Their new clubs with their you know Um and so there's a sense of kind of Community and connection ironically that Can be found in shopping and I think

Well maybe it's not ironic because if You think about it like that's what the Mall was the mall was like a social Experiment or social Endeavor more than Anything it's where people went to kind Of of go have lunch and meet friends and You know kind of see what was new I Think it's just happening in different Ways now because we connect differently In digital Realm Yeah and to kind of hone on something That you said previously Eddie in terms Of how a lot of things are moving Towards Ai and automation within retail And you're doing the exact opposite I Just wanted to know a little bit more as To why Because I don't think that people want To buy a 2 000 mountain bike with a Chatbot Um I I just and I think that as a Company we really get excited about the Idea of helping experts monetize their Passion like that's pretty awesome right Like if you're really into golfing or Skiing or whatever you get paid and make Can make a really good living giving People advice on those things and Talking about Um the things that get you really Motivated It's also because that's what the Consumer wants right so the consumer Doesn't want

To have the anxiety of like I read some Reviews I haven't bought a set of skis In seven years and just based on those Reviews I'm making a decision like That's the interesting thing about our Business is that the categories that we Operate in are 80 to 85 sometimes 90 Still done in stores today so people do Tons of research online But they still buy it in stores and the Reason they do so is because they want To make sure that they're not getting The wrong thing and we believe the Expert helps solve that And now looking at some of the audience Questions to ask you Um someone asked Beyond Commerce your Investment thesis has evolved into Looking for a central consumer Experiences that are still not Consumer-centric are there any specific Pain points That's right totally can you say it Again I'm sorry Um it says Beyond Commerce your Investment or maybe they're asking like Has your investment thesis evolved into Looking for a central consumer Experiences that are not consumer Centric Are there any specific pain points that Are not consumer-centric that are still Maybe I will ask another one okay well I'll attempt at that you know I think

That um There's been the consumerization of a Lot of categories over time Um Healthcare is one of the ones that Pop to mind I think it's a topic that People as they've had more access to Information have started to feel well First of all you've either had a Disappointment with your own health care Service everybody you know whether it's You or your family has some story about They couldn't get the medical attention They need or they couldn't get access to The doctor they needed they couldn't get Access to the product So I think there's a lot more of a kind Of I got to take it into my own hands Type approach there's also a lot more Information so people have a lot they're They're more in tune with their with Their bodies with their health and They're taking a proactive stance Towards it and that's bringing up a Whole other category of needs and Products and services that people are in The market for that have become consumer Offerings that maybe didn't even exist That way before And Eddie someone wants to know what Differentiates your product from wire Cutter Well with Wirecutter you can't talk to People And it's one person

Exactly yeah so experts on curated Um basically get connected with the Consumer and basically give you advice On whatever they believe is best for you It's we don't believe that a best set of Skis exist or a best snowboard or a best Car or a best anything we believe that There is something that's the right Thing for you based on your needs and we Think that that to make that really come To life and to make that happen you need To actually have the context of what Somebody's going through and what They're what they're prioritizing so Imagine if you had a personalized wire Cutter yeah right that like a system That knew more about you over time and Could put together you know an entire List of different recommendations for Different aspects of your life that were Contributed from people that were Experts in each of those categories That's what curated enables and this is An interesting question Um for you both Um a little bit of retail and e-commerce How do you choose what to automate and What are some examples of automation Wins while keeping the experts Central To the experience Oh there's a ton Um so for starters probably probably one Of the most interesting ones would be Our experts hire other experts

So we built a bunch of Technology where A panel of experts that we trust review Your application And there's a video application there's A technical assessment there's a Personality assessment there's a bunch Of different things but nobody from HQ Touches that it's all done within within Software and within the community and so That's an example where not only did it Save us a bunch of money but it also Improved the quality of hiring because Our experts have a better understanding Of who's a really good ski expert or Coffee expert than one of our own people At HQ there's also the really important Aspect of matching right yeah I mean There's so many examples there's the way That we schedule experts right like how Do you decide which experts to have Online at what time to Kirsten's Point Matching right so if you're looking for A pair of boots who is the right expert To give you advice on those boots Because if I have 100 experts available Some are super knowledgeable boot Fitters and some are a little bit less And so we I mean we try to use Technology everywhere we can other than To ever think about replacing the Experts Yes and did you have anything you want To add to that Okay I will try to fit in one more

Audience question Um someone said there is a trend with Forerunner investing in Brands who have Credible community at the core like Curated Um what's the next iteration of that for You What's the next iteration of community In a shopping experience or the next Um I actually think that like one of the Big needs people have right now is Feeling connected and feeling part of Community we've all you know for the Last two decades have grown up with Social media they're largely in big Ubiquitous communities I think there's This real desire to connect over more Specific things I think curated is an Example of that there's a you know group Of customers a group of experts that are Really you know coming together around Skiing it started with a purchase Journey but now there's you know Something else kind of happening there Among that group I think when we think About kind of again in that Non-discretionary item it is not just About a product or a service it's about The whole experience that you're having And Um and and that might you know that Might be leading up to shopping that Might be afterward shopping so I think

You know the the community idea and the Connection idea is a is one that's Relevant in Commerce but more Importantly I think it's relevant Everywhere like I think that that's Something people are really looking for Um and and need and so so however we Think about what the future I don't I Don't make up the future I Founders come In and tell me what that is but right Now we're looking at like what are the Need States and how are people's Behaviors changing or might they change And then somebody else you know kind of Inspires us with their idea and their Approach to it but if I put what I think People need at the Forefront I do think People are looking for Community I do Think people are are looking for in General they're looking for more purpose In their life so they want to maybe get Out and have activities or have hobbies Or connect with people at that you know If the part of the business model is Shopping in the middle like okay that's You know that's an interesting approach And just because I'm interested what is The next iteration of community for you Eddie sorry the next iteration of Community for you So for us it's a couple of things Um one is it's not just you know today It happens in a bit of a happenstance Fashion where our experts and customers

Will go golfing together they'll go Skiing together but we actually in our Product want to make that actually come Very much to life Where there are communities that are Built there's content that's being Shared Um and it's also about how we help Experts uh build their own communities Amongst themselves so for example We have these incredibly busy slack Channels where not only we'll have our Ski experts but we'll have our ski Experts in Colorado Right and 30 of them will get together And go riding together and then how we Can then incorporate the 5 000 users That we have in Colorado right to go Skiing with them there's some really Cool stuff that we uh that we're Starting to think about there And very quickly overall what is next For both of you I'm gonna let you go first I mean I think right now it's it is Really you know the big question that We're asking ourselves around our table Is what is all this change add up to We've had two years of un unprecedented Upheaval in our lives now we have Economic uncertainty like what really is Important going forward and how much of What people are feeling now is Reactionary versus things that stick for

The future I think there's a lot of new Needs that have been discovered through This time period and all this change and Need speaks to opportunity so you know I Think from an investment standpoint I Feel like that keeps us on high alert For who you know what are the solutions To address those needs This is going to sound like a lame Answer but not that much is going to be Changing for us like we've been super Focused and we're going to continue to Be focused like sure things are changing And so we'll optimize amongst the edges Um but we are really focused on just Focus executing what's ahead of us We have time for today so thank you so Much

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