🔵 Zucky McLucky


June 30, 2021

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The Hustle

It’s the Wednesday before the July 4 long weekend… which means it’s already the July 4 long weekend.

The big idea
Zuckerberg grilling

Facebook scores an antitrust win

Mark Zuckerberg is a noted fan of BBQ.

He’ll likely be throwing some celebratory steaks on the grill after Monday’s big news: a DC federal court has thrown out 2 antitrust suits against Facebook.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC)…

… and several state attorneys general were looking to break up your uncle’s favorite social network for being a monopoly. But according to the court, they couldn’t properly define what industry in which Facebook is actually a monopoly.

Politico writes that US District Judge James Boasberg made 2 key critiques against this suit:

  • What is a social network? The prosecution didn’t make clear the bounds of features of the market they were describing.
  • What is Facebook’s share? Prosecutors said Facebook holds a 60%+ share in said market, but the explanation was “vague.”

The other big blow

A separate suit painted Facebook’s previous acquisitions of Instagram (2012) and WhatsApp (2014) as anti-competitive.

However, Judge Boasberg said that the prosecution took way too long to bring these cases to court. Attempting to unwind these deals now seems to be quite a big ask.

While Zucky McLucky has won this round…

… the court’s decision is far from final. Per Matt Stoller, there is a silver lining for Big Tech critics. The FTC can actually refile its complaint within 30 days with new market share data (and perhaps a stronger case).

More broadly, these failed suits are a call to action for legislators.

“It’s evident that Congress needs to step in and rewrite antitrust laws across the board,” writes Stoller.

In the meantime, Facebook investors may enjoy some BBQ themselves: Shortly after the news came out, $FB passed $1T for the first time.

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SNIPPETS

Toggle — a construction startup that uses robots to quickly fabricate and assemble rebar — just raised $8m. #emerging-tech

MGM Resorts’ new 100-megawatt solar array can power 13 properties and 36k rooms on the sunny Las Vegas strip. #clean-energy

The housing market is already tight. It doesn’t help that investors are scooping up homes to list on Airbnb. #big-tech

Playboy owner PLBY Group snaps up Honey Birdette, Australia’s racy lingerie brand, for $333m+. #ecommerce-retail

Hackers are sneaking malware into free PC games on torrent sites. Why? To mine crypto for them. #privacy

If you missed Zachary Crockett’s Sunday story about the dollar store empire, he breaks it down in Tweet-form here. #hustle-picks

JPMorgan Chase nabs OpenInvest, a personalized Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investment platform. #fintech-cryptocurrency

Fashion Trends
denim jeans

Denim’s back, but with way-back styles

There’s a very random fight happening on TikTok.

Gen Z users are making fun of millennials for wearing skinny jeans. As it turns out, skinny jeans actually are falling out of favor… but for a logical reason.

People put on pounds during the pandemic

Which means that sales trends are shifting from skinny jeans to more comfortable fits, per Forbes. (The same is true of underwear — we wrote about that here.)

It’s not just a change in taste, either. Denim demand is rising overall.

At Levi, sales for men’s relaxed fits and chinos are up 20%+ YoY, while women have been choosing Loose and Stay Loose styles. According to Levi Brand EVP and president Jen Sey, it’s a combo of ’90s nostalgia, comfort, and sustainability (Levi’s loose fits use more sustainable fabrics).

Over at American Eagle, AE’s Mom Jeans became the top seller for the first time this spring.

And it’s not just here

Vogue India talked to 3 denim designers — Dhruv Kapoor, Kanika Goyal, and Pooja Shah — who all said wider-leg, looser pants have become the top sellers.

Overall, the market value for denim was $90B in 2019 and is expected to hit $105B by 2023.

But the real question is, will JNCO ever really make a comeback?

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Business of Sports
Lakers game

The LA Lakers are worth $5B

The Los Angeles Lakers, winners of 17 NBA titles, were already eliminated from this year’s playoffs — but their owner just scored big.

According to Joe Pompliano at Huddle Up, sports and entertainment mogul Philip Anschutz will sell his 27% minority stake in the storied franchise.

The deal values the Lakers at $5B, and the buyers are locals: Mark Walter and Todd Boehly, the owners of the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team.

NBA franchises have exploded in value

In 2011, the average NBA franchise was worth ~$367m. Today, that figure is ~$2.2B.

The 6 largest franchises — all in big markets (New York, San Francisco, LA x2, Chicago, Boston — make up two-thirds of the total league value, per Pompliano.

Anschutz’s sale marks another trend: minority owners willing to cash out. PE firm Arctos Sports Partners recently bought a 5% stake from minority owners of the Golden State Warriors, valuing that franchise at $5.5B.

While Anschutz is selling the team…

… his firm — the Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) — owns the Staples Center, where the Lakers play.

Meanwhile, basketball is only one part of the AEG empire:

  • Other stadiums include The O2 (London), T-Mobile Arena (Las Vegas), and Mercedes-Benz Arena (Shanghai)
  • Other sports teams include the LA Kings (hockey) and LA Galaxy (soccer)
  • Music festivals such as the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and sweatfest Coachella

And… AEG also owns… well, you get the point. Anschutz has a lot of stuff, and funds from the Lakers sale will surely finance more.

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Podcast

Most startups take longer to build than you think

For example, Tim Westergren started Pandora in 1998 — and the first 8 years sucked.

He even had to ask employees to believe in the vision and work for free before it finally started gaining traction.

And Webflow was no different.

It failed 3 times before gaining any kind of traction.

In this episode Sam and Shaan give tactical strategies to overcome this and continue to push through the years of hard work.

🎧 Listen here →
TRENDS

The top 1,000 Shopify stores have a lot in common

Our Trends team analyzed the top 1,000 Shopify stores, and the results were surprising.

We found that there are repeatable patterns that almost all successful eCommerce companies follow.

And we put all of our findings in a database for you.

When you look through, you’ll learn:

  • What tools each site uses (Mailchimp, Zendesk, Heap etc).
  • Total website traffic and search volume
  • SEO data (backlinks, keywords, etc).
  • Even estimated revenue

Do you want to emulate the most successful companies in eComm?

Level up your Shopify store by joining Trends.

Level up →
Meme of the day
Zuckerberg Birthday meme

This isn’t wrong (Source: Twitter / @Zuckerbergmemes)

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Stickers

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Pint Glass

Look at you, smarty pants. You’ve already shared The Hustle with {referral_count} friends and enemies.

But hey, just because you’re a business nerd doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a cool bevvy. Get {10-referral_count} more referrals and we’ll send you a pint glass etched with The Hustle logo.

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Always be Hustlin' tee

You’re close to the most coveted item in Hustle-land: The Always Be Hustlin Tee.

The fabric? Luxurious. The cut? Relaxed, yet refined. The message? Indisputable.

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Hustle Hoodie

Damn, you’re on a roll. You’ve got the pint glass. You’ve got the hat. It’s time to complete your collection, don’t you think?

Get {50 – referral_count} more referrals and we’ll send you our favorite piece of Hustle swag: The Startup Sweatshirt. Slipping into this piece of fleece might just transport you to Silicon Valley (or maybe somewhere better, your pick).

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Trends Screenshot

Hey, we see you. You’re out there spreading the gospel of The Hustle like it’s nobody’s business. Seems like you might be ready for a little more…

Get {100 – referral_count} more referrals and we’ll slide you a free subscription to Trends.

And no, this ain’t an ad. We just think you’re the kinda person who would thrive in our top-tier community (it’s usually $299) full of founders, investors, and builders (AKA ambitious, no B.S. business folks like you — and enjoy our premium research and content.

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Plane

If you love us so much why don’t you just marry us?

Get {1000 – referral_count} more referrals and we’ll fly you to The Hustle HQ in beautiful, downtown eastern Austin, Texas. Round-trip flight, 2 nights in a hotel downtown, and some wining and dining with The Hustle fam.

Heck, you practically work here anyway. Copy & paste this link to share:

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