Why we invested in talkshoplive: A more authentic, engaging future of commerce
Shripriya Mahesh and Stephen Wemple
At its heart, Spero Ventures aims to catalyze economic opportunity. Pierre Omidyar, the founder of eBay and our single LP, has always believed in technology’s potential to do that. Seeing how the internet enabled transparency, choice, and community, he founded eBay to bring those elements to life, connecting sellers and buyers around the world.
Fast forward 25 years, and here we are — at another inflection point when technological innovation is unlocking new ways to connect sellers and buyers. Live video is an emerging force that taps into the cultural focus on authenticity, connection, and experience, expanding the potential value of buyer/seller communities. talkshoplive is a company that’s pulling all these things together. As we got to know them, we realized we’d found the newest addition to the Spero portfolio.
talkshoplive cultivates immersive, inclusive, live selling that empowers people to tell the stories behind their products and connect with their communities. Much like eBay before them, they level the playing field: they enable small businesses and creators to share a stage with celebrities and some of the largest retail brands in the world.
When we met co-founder and CEO Bryan Moore for the first time, we knew he was the right person to build this experience-focused community. Bryan has a unique perspective on the history of live selling in China, a deep understanding of social media and creators, and a strong focus on helping small businesses succeed and thrive.
As we spent time with the product, the power of the talkshoplive community became increasingly clear. Whether it was Stephen stumbling into “going live” and immediately getting 70 live viewers cheering him on, or the team joining a Hungry Monkey Baking show and seeing the host interact with her community, the product was a joyful experience. We can’t wait to see all the ways the community of creators, sellers, and consumers will help evolve this product.
Bryan and his co-founder, Tina, built this company because they have a deep passion for small businesses, and a firm belief in the power of storytelling and community. talkshoplive is a culmination of the co-founders’ life experiences, and we couldn’t be more excited to partner with the team on the adventures ahead.