Chinese e-commerce giant partners with Silicon Valley accelerator program
Alibaba rival JD.com is expanding its presence in the United States.
The online giant announced a collaboration with start-up accelerator Plug and Play to seek out and work with promising U.S. startups, reported Techcrunch.com.
The new JD-backed program will be open to startups that cover “a range of areas and industries,” with a particular interest in those that operate in such common areas as robotics, AI, AR/VR and the cloud, the report said.
“Partnering with JD.com, one of China’s premier technology players, will give startups access to both tremendous innovation resources, as well as a huge helping hand as they look to reach the Chinese market,” said Plug and Play CEO and founder Saeed Amidi.
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Vitamin Shoppe expands access to its subscription service
Vitamin Shoppe wants more customers to become members of its subscription service.
The retailer’s product subscription program, called Spark Auto Delivery, features automated replenishment of customers’ favorite wellness items, as well as new product samples. By partnering with OrderGroove, Vitamin Shoppe is making it easier for customers to sign up for the service.
OrderGroove’s platform will enable users to enroll in Spark at any of the chain’s 775 stores. Those who enroll will receive tailored offers through the “VShoppe” mobile application, and can also stay abreast of their membership via text messages and online, according to Vitamin Shoppe.
In addition to being a scalable platform, OrderGroove will also give Vitamin Shoppe access into data-driven insights — information that will help the retailer learn more about its customers’ buying behavior, and create innovative customer experiences.
“OrderGroove is helping us activate valuable customer data in our CRM, e-commerce and point-of-sale platforms to create increased loyalty and engagement among customers enrolled in the Spark program,” said John Hnanicek, senior VP and chief customer innovation & technology officer at Vitamin Shoppe.
In addition to receiving personalized merchandise, Spark Auto Delivery subscribers also receive 10% off of more than 1,000 participating products, double Healthy Awards points, and free shipping in the continental United States. Customers can choose their own product shipping schedule.
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