Darrell Cavens

Joe Keenan is the executive editor of Total Retail.

Say it ain't so! I was actually sad when I read in MarketWatch this week that Seattle-based online retailer Zulily’s shares plunged more than 21 percent after it presented a weaker-than-expected sales forecast. And to think it was partly due to an email marketing mistake.

Zulily was founded in January 2010 by two retail veterans, Darrell Cavens and Mark Vadon, both of whom at that time were at a point in their lives where discussions about kids — whether their own or their friends’ — dominated the conversation. So the two decided to create a unique online retail business that would better serve them and others like them. Cavens gave a keynote presentation this week at the Shop.org Annual Summit in Seattle detailing how the company has grown from online startup into one of the hottest brands in the retail industry — and how customers are driving that success.

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