- Flip, a social commerce app that mixes products, content and video reviews, announced on Monday that it raised $28 million in a Series A funding round led by Streamlined Ventures. Other investors include Mubadala Capital Ventures and BDMI.
- Flip said it plans to use the capital to further develop its brand offerings and creator ecosystem, and enhance its end-to-end logistics platform.
- The startup also announced that it's launching commissioned video reviews for all the users on its platform, which would allow them to monetize their posts that others engage with. They can earn either Flip credits or receive funds in their bank accounts.
Flip is yet another platform trying to get in on the social commerce action. But in its fundraising announcement, Flip also tried to differentiate itself as a platform that allows content creators to earn money from their product reviews without pressure from partnership brands to sound positive.
"The beauty industry, in particular, is ripe for disruption, shifting from influencers and paid promotions towards honest testimonials from everyday users. The future of e-commerce will be driven by shoppers and the real-life experiences they share via social media," Noor Agha, founder and CEO of Flip, said in a statement. "By connecting social video with a seamless commerce experience, we're creating a platform of authenticity, empowering brands and consumers alike to share their stories, while transforming how we discover new products."
As Flip raises money to build up its app, other apps are vying for a share of the social commerce market. Verishop introduced social commerce features to its app last November, allowing users to tag products in their videos and photos, and follow brands and other people. The following month, Instagram unveiled its Shopping in Reels feature, which lets sellers and creators tag products when they make Instagram Reels. Even Snapchat has partnered with Verishop and Poshmark this year to create their own in-app shopping experiences on the platform.
Companies have been shifting their focus from social to commerce seemingly in response to the growing market for social shopping. An eMarketer report predicts that U.S. social commerce sales will increase by 35.8% to $36.6 billion this year. Meanwhile, platforms like Talkshoplive, Whatnot and ShopShops are raising millions to capitalize on the livestream shopping trend.