Plotting our path with a new investment partner
It’s been a busy few months at Nearby HQ. Following launch, we heard from hundreds of people across the country (and outside the US too) asking us to bring Nearby to their town—people who want to see the small businesses in their towns and cities thrive. They’re hungry for a convenient way to shop local as a small but pragmatic form of community activism, and Nearby plans to make that possible.
And here’s how we’re going to do it: We’re excited to announce that we’ve raised our Series A round of funding from Annie Kadavy at Redpoint Ventures, with participation of existing investors from our seed round raised in 2020: GV, Obvious Ventures, Cowboy Ventures, Sound Ventures, Moxxie Ventures, and Tina Sharkey. With this funding Annie will join the Nearby board.
In essence, Nearby functions as the eCommerce team for your town, partnering with the local constituents who see value in keeping dollars flowing into the pockets of business owners in their community. It’s an audacious, idealistic goal — and also a serious business to build given the $1T in GMV that flows to local retailers today. And if we do our jobs right at Nearby, we help local retailers compete for the spend that currently ends up with online giants and chain stores.
Local, independent shops sell the high-quality, differentiated products which make towns distinct from one another, and also because they pull communities together. We know this — well, just because we know this, but we also know it because the response from independent businesses, their customers, and our investors affirm it to be true.
Bottom line: It’s not going to be getting any less busy at Nearby, and we’re just fine with that. Later this month, we’ll welcome our 20th team member just as we celebrate our first anniversary as a company — and while we continue to celebrate Oakland’s Birthday at Keep Oakland Alive, we’re also, excitingly, preparing to onboard our launch partner shops in our next town: Austin, Texas.