Weekly Industry Brief: 1.8.2018

Happy New Year! Very excited to be kicking off a new year.  Regardless of your opinion on resolutions, I think it’s a good time to reflect, reset, and restart.  In the meantime, catch up on some industry news from the last few weeks.  Sources can be found in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brands and Retailers

  • Outfoxed by small-batch upstarts, Unilever decides to imitate them. The Wall Street Journal
  • This bustling mall has a hole to fill – just not with stores. Bloomberg
  • Amazon puzzles over the perfect fit for boxes. The Wall Street Journal
  • WalMart is testing personal shopping and cashier-free stores. Fortune
  • The state of the world consumer in 2018. The Robin Report
  • Nike remains challenged in the US. Business of Fashion
  • Nike to partner with StichFix and expand with Amazon. Retail Dive
  • Here is what retailers have to prove in 2018. Fortune
  • In 2018, Amazon will turn to private-label goods. Digiday
  • Fast-fashion chain Primark is slow off the mark in US. The Wall Street Journal
  • The Echo Dot was the best-selling product on all of Amazon this holiday season. TechCrunch
  • Apple led holiday device activations, but Samsung gained ground. VentureBeat
  • Alphabet chairman Eric Schmidt steps aside. Mashable
  • Amazon grabbed 4% of all US retail sales in 2017. CNBC
  • Quicksilver is merging with Billabong. CNN

Marketing and Social Media

  • Turning physical stores into living advertorials. Business of Fashion
  • Amazon shipped over 5 billion items with Prime in 2017. TechCrunch
  • Instagram will add recommended posts to your feed. TechCrunch
  • Snapchat considers making users sit through three seconds of ads. AdAge
  • From vegan diet to flat Earth, Kyrie Irving’s insane new Nike ad packs in a lot. AdWeek
  • Sears and Kmart stopped buying national TV ads in holiday season. The Wall Street Journal
  • Four ways social media influences millennials’ purchasing decisions. Forbes
  • Walmart is investing in shopper data: how that will change the grocery aisle. Forbes
  • Amazon has big plans for Alexa ads in 2018. CNBC

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Amazon’s smart mirror patent teases the future of fashion. CNN
  • The future of secure authentication is your voice. Fortune
  • Subscription businesses are booming; here’s how to value them. Harvard Business Review
  • Digitally native brands are investing in, and changing, the store. Glossy
  • Spotify makes confidential filling for U.S. IPO. Reuters
  • Why beauty brands keep investing in chatbots, despite growing pains. Glossy
  • Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook is looking into how it can use cryptocurrency. Business Insider

International

  • Amazon to unveil private label smartphone in India. Economic Times
  • Saint Laurent launches on JD.com luxury platform, Toplife. Business of Fashion
  • Prada unveils mobile-first ecommerce shop in China. Women’s Wear Daily
  • Regional Hong Kong malls attract Goldman Sachs, Puma. Business of Fashion
  • Who influences the influencers? The Chinese tastemakers you don’t know.  Jing Daily
  • JD.com planning hundreds of unmanned stores. Retail Dive
  • TopShop opens first China store. JingDaily
  • Dubai billionaire’s tech startup takes on Amazon. Wall Street Journal
  • Google plans to open brick-and-mortar stores in India to shore up sales of Pixel smartphones. India Times
  • Online holiday shopping’s big hangover. The New York Times
  • Customer service sucks in Latin America. Amazon may change that.  Bloomberg
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