PLUS: Wooden skyscrapers and YouTube’s growth buffers.
You may have taken a pilates class before, but probably not from Liana Levi. She describes her clientele as “not the masses,” which is one way to describe regulars like Ariana Grande and Kylie Jenner. If you’re interested, get ready to pay up — Levi charges $75-$100 per group class and $500 for a private session.
In today’s email:
Gummy bears: The history of our massive gummy economy.
Chart: YouTube’s growth is buffering.
Wooden skyscrapers: Sustainable, and they look cool.
Around the web: The Earth’s evolution, beefing with companies, a kitten’s great escape, and more fun internet finds.
🎧 On the go? Listen to today’s 10-minute podcast to hear Jacob and Juliet discuss fitness gaming, Meta’s earnings, a new Avatar, and the delicious (and sometimes functional) $40B gummy industry.
The big idea
The evolution of gummy bears
Regardless of where you grew up, there’s a good chance gummy bears were part of your childhood.
And there’s a good chance that’ll be the case for generations to come.
What started as a novelty candy 100 years ago has evolved into a full-blown gummy economy that’s only getting bigger, according to The New York Times.
… were invented in Germany in 1922 by Hans Riegel, the founder of Haribo. It took ~60 years for gummy bears to take off in the US, but once they did, competition arose quickly:
Jelly Belly introduced the 1st American-made gummy bear in 1981
Haribo opened its 1st distribution center in the US in 1982
Albanese released its own gummy bears in 1983
Along the way, rival candy companies pushed gummies beyond the bear, like Trolli’s sour gummy worms and Mondelez’s Sour Patch Kids.
… gummies were given a new purpose: Hero Nutritionals introduced the Yummi Bear, the 1st gummy vitamin.
The invention kicked off a booming market that’s still thriving. Nutrition Business Journalestimated American gummy vitamin sales at ~$1.4B in 2018.
More importantly, the move showed that gummies can be used to deliver more than just a sugar high, leading to a wide range of products, including:
Gummy supplements, from caffeine to fish oil
Sleep gummies, usually featuring melatonin and other ingredients
Weed gummies, including both CBD and THC varieties
Estimates peg the global CBD gummy market as high as ~$14B by 2028. Add that to the global market for gummy and jelly candy, which is estimated to reach $40B by 2024, and it’s clear gummies are big business.
Why do we love gummies so much?
One reason is nostalgia, according to Marcia Mogelonsky, director of insight at marketing analysis firm Mintel Food & Drink.
Candy store owner Elizabeth Schmitt agrees, saying gummies remind her of simpler times.
P.S. If you’re looking for a new way to enjoy your gummies, Schmitt’s store, Ruby Bond, offers a wide variety of gummy charcuterie boards.
Ugly outlook: Meta forecasts$28B-$40B in revenue for Q2 2022. The low end of the range would result in the company’s 1st YoY revenue drop.
Department store dynasty: Simon and Brookfield, owners of JCPenney, made an offer to buy competitor Kohl’s for $8.6B.
Bad news: Robinhood announced it’s laying off 9% of its staff in an effort to increase automation. The move will impact ~340 employees.
Bitcoin HQ: Fort Worth, Texas, became the 1st city in the US to mine bitcoin, and even built a small mining farm in City Hall.
Helping hospitals: A doctor dropped out of residency to solve a major problem: Babies in the NICU needed safe, fast access to breast milk. The Hustle sat down with him to find out how he did it.
Right to repair: You can now buy parts from Apple’s Self Service Repair store online and fix your own iPhone. You can also rent tools for $49/week. #ecommerce-retail
Choo choo: Tokyu, a Japanese railway company, now runs entirely on solar and other renewable energy. This includes not just its trains, but also its vending machines, lighting, and security cameras. #clean-energy
Rivian’s much-anticipated EV has hit new delays, but it’s coming with new software, including a dashcam feature and a “pet mode” that runs the AC for your dog. But does it play his favorite music? #emerging-tech
Run away! OliveX is a fitness platform that rewards exercisers with crypto as they evade virtual enemies. #fintech-crypto
In the wake of Musk’s Twitter takeover, some high-profile accounts lost thousands of followers while others gained them. Twitter attributed it to “an increase in new account creation and deactivation.” #big-tech
Singdhi Sokpo / The Hustle
YouTube’s growth struggles to load
Google’s Search and Cloud businesses may be loading at lightning speed, but YouTube’s is buffering.
YouTube was the weakest link in Alphabet’s earnings report this week. Alphabet saw 23% growth to $68B, and YouTube even grew 14% to $6.87B, but the video unit fell short of the 25% growth analysts expected.
So what happened?
TikTok and more streaming options than ever, happened. There’s only so much time in a day.
Ukraine: Alphabet execs said Europe saw a pullback in ad spending since Russia’s invasion.
What’s YouTube doing now?
Working on Shorts, the company’s TikTok clapback. YouTube launched the format in 2020 free of commercials and financed it with a $100m creator fund. Now, execs say the plan is to introduce ads.
😠 Haha: A Twitter user has created a list of companies he has beef with, including Applebee’s, “the Shein of restaurants,” and Shein, whose “shirts feel like sandpaper and the wet part of a shower curtain combined.”
🐾 Aww: And now, a kitten who’s very bad at breaking out of jail.