The Pop Up Report by Ethan Song
The Pop Up Report
E5 Pop Up Deep Dive: Why You Shouldn’t Take VC Money, Even When You Can
0:00
-48:50

E5 Pop Up Deep Dive: Why You Shouldn’t Take VC Money, Even When You Can

Ethan Song and Nick D’Urbano discuss the downside of venture capital for CPG and DTC businesses. There’s a shift taking place within CPG and e-commerce. Brands are optimizing for profitability and shunning expensive venture dollars—and for good reason! DTC businesses as a category have not performed well since Warby Parker pioneered the concept over a decade ago. Hear from Ethan’s experience raising over $40m in capital with Frank & Oak and better understand the risks and challenges of taking capital for early CPG and DTC businesses. This episode also explores how to grow profitably, different types of financing options and important traps to be aware of as you find product market fit and start to scale.

Subscribe to our Substack and YouTube for more engaging content and thoughtful analysis. 

- - - - - - - - - - - - 

Links Discussed

Don’t Take the Money (Even When You Can) by Ethan Song

DTC Analysis by Ben Cogan

1,000 True Fans by Kevin Kelly

- - - - - - - - - - - - 

Show Notes:

3:45 Profitability and growth

7:35 Amazon v. DTC brands

13:25 Venture capital in CPG

21:30 The risks of VC dollars

29:30 Brand growth checklist

32:30 Product market fit

34:30 Marketing and growth

38:00 Non-dilutive capital

42:27 Funding inventory

44:00 - Crowdfunding

- - - - - - - - - - - - 

Past guests on the Pop Up Report include Stephen Kuhl (Burrow), Jake Karls (Mid-Day Squares), Alan Wood (Rally Beer Company). 

Stay tuned for new episodes from upcoming guests including Lanny Smith (Actively Black), Karen Danudjaja (Blume), J.P. Robert (Quartz Co., Want les Essentiels) and many more.

- - - - - - - - - - - - 

Additional Episodes You Might Enjoy:

Rally Beer Company: Tapping into Passion

Mid-Day Squares: Building the Next Great CPG Brand through Authentic Content

Burrow: Customer Obsession as a Competitive Advantage

- - - - - - - - - - - - 

The Pop Up Report interviews DTC and CPG founders to uncover how they fostered and scaled their communities to create profitable businesses. Gain a deeper understanding of the tools, tactics and retention strategies that build true customer loyalty.

Subscribe to the Pop Up Report on Substack or YouTube for more. 

0 Comments
The Pop Up Report by Ethan Song
The Pop Up Report
Ethan Song interviews DTC and CPG founders to uncover how they fostered and scaled their communities to create profitable businesses. Gain a deeper understanding of the tools, tactics and retention strategies that build true customer loyalty.
Ethan was previously the Co-Founder & CEO of Frank & Oak a sustainable apparel brand that generated 9-figures in revenue before being acquired by private equity in 2020. He’s now the Co-Founder & CEO of RareCircles.
For more Pop Up Report content subscribe and visit www.thepopupreport.com.
This podcast is brought to you by RareCircles, a membership platform that blends community engagement with rewards and benefits. Learn more at www.rarecircles.com.