October 14, 2010

Michael Rubin of GSI Commerce Inc. Speaks at Castanea Partners’ CEO Roundtable Forum on Next Gen e-Commerce

Castanea Partners hosted an invitation-only event in an ongoing series of unique evening panel and roundtable discussions on driving innovation and growth in small- and mid-sized businesses. Entitled “Next gen e-Commerce: Where Do We Go From Here?,” this latest forum included approximately 30 CEOs and senior executives from various growth-oriented companies consistent with Castanea’s sector focus. The evening included a “fireside chat” with Michael Rubin, Chairman, President, and CEO of GSI Commerce Inc. (NASDAQ:GSIC) and Jeffrey F. Rayport, Operating Partner at Castanea.

The discussion focused on the evolving retail marketplace and how to grow a retail brand that extends beyond “traditional” offline and online sales channels. Entrepreneurs today are under pressure to leverage innovative multi-channel strategies, and their playbooks increasingly include search optimization, social media presence, mobile storefronts, geo-tagging, crowd-sourcing, augmented reality, and gaming environments. Among such an expanding array of options, what types of retail marketing investments make sense? To play the game, should you build, buy, or partner? The audio and snapshots below are a representative sample of the evening’s discussion.

About Castanea

Castanea is a private equity firm that works in partnership with founders and management teams of innovative passion brands to grow their businesses through a combination of capital investment and operating expertise. We are focused on select consumer verticals including beauty, food and beverage, multi-unit services, and enthusiast lifestyle. We typically invest between $15 to $150 million of equity in minority or majority transactions. Our team of talented operating executives offers critical expertise in key verticals and functional areas, and provides our partner companies with strategic and tactical support. Castanea has more than $1 billion in assets under management and is currently investing from a $735 million fourth fund. For more information about Castanea Partners read our story.

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