Weekly Industry Brief: 1.28.2019

Happy Monday! Here is a recap of industry news from the last week. As always, sources can be found in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brands + Retailers

  • Amazon to introduce virtual changing room app.  Telegraph
  • Apple plans gaming subscription service.  Cheddar
  • Amazon is trying to take down the last bastion of brick-and-mortar: beauty. Quartz
  • Amazon, Alphabet and Walmart were top IT spenders in 2019.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Under Armour partners with Virgin Atlantic to build spacesuit.  USA Today
  • Starbucks is expanding its Uber delivery to more cities.  Bloomberg
  • Mickey Drexler to depart from J.Crew.  Business Insider
  • You can rent a desk by the minute at WeWork’s first public location.  Fast Company 
  • A coalition of giant brands is about to change how we shop forever, with a new zero-waste platform.  Fast Company 
  • Brands invent new lines for only Amazon to sell.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Net-a-porter unveils try-before-you-buy service for big spenders.  Retail Gazette

Marketing + Social Media

  • Amazon knows what you buy and is building a big ad business from it.  The New York Times 
  • CMO’s are allocating nearly 30% of their budgets to marketing technology.  Deloitte
  • The secret life of Amazon’s Vine reviewers.  The New York Times 
  • Zuckerberg plans to integrate WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook Messenger.  The New York Times 
  • LinkedIn is debuting interest targeting based on content users share and engage with.  AdWeek
  • Zuckerberg in WSJ op-ed: Facebook doesn’t sell your data! Fast Company 
  • Facebook to create independent board to monitor content.  AdAge
  • American Eagle surrendered creative control for its latest marketing effort to Gen Z.  AdWeek
  • How publishers use influencers to grow commerce businesses.  DIgiday
  • Amazon unveils celebrity beta-testing program for Super Bowl.  AdAge
  • Hilton and Netflix partnering for in-room personalized streaming.  Fortune

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Kustomer nabs $35M to take on Zendesk and Salesforce with its Slack-like approach to CRM.  TechCrunch
  • Go-Jek makes first close of $2B round at $9.5B valuation.  TechCrunch
  • Airbnb acquires Denmark’s Gaest to expand in bookings for meetings and offsites.  TechCrunch
  • The RealReal founder, Julie Wainwright is the Tycon of the pre-owned. The New York Times 
  • Rosetta Stone for iPhone adds AI to identify objects for live translations.  Venture Beat
  • Stop & Shop is testing self-driving mini grocery stores.  The Verge

International

  • Amazon starts selling in Brazil.  Reuters
  • Google and IAB ad category lists show ‘massive leakage of highly intimate data,’ according to GDPR complaint claims.  TechCrunch
  • Starbucks CEO says they are playing the long game in China.  CNBC
  • Alibaba shows signs of strain as China’s economy shudders.  Bloomberg
  • Dyson will move its head office from Britain to Singapore.  The New York Times 
Advertisements

Weekly Industry Brief: 1.21.2019

Happy Monday! Here is a recap of industry news from the last week. Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brands + Retailers

  • New York’s lost department stores.  The New York Times 
  • Patagonia’s CEO on how saving the planet has been good for business.  Fashionista
  • Boosting mall revenues through advanced analytics.  McKinsey
  • Net-a-porter launches kidswear.  Vogue
  • Netflix stock tanks despite record Q4 subscriber growth.  Fast Company 
  • Tesla is laying off 7% of its full-time employees.  Fast Company
  • Rihanna said to be readying luxury house with LVMH.  WWD
  • Amazon rewrites book industry by marching into publishing.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Fossil to sell smartwatch IP to Google for $40M.  ZDNet
  • Walmart adds four grocery delivery partners.  TechCrunch
  • Target is making a bigger bet on baby.  CNBC
  • Chico’s will close at least 250 stores to better compete in the age of Amazon.  USA Today
  • Gymboree files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection again. The Wall Street Journal
  • L’occitane adds Elemis for $900M as luxury skincare booms.  Bloomberg
  • The Fenty effect comes to skincare.  Business of Fashion
  • How WeWork’s CEO also acts as a landlord for his company.  Inc
  • Comfy shoes helped Allbirds become a $1.4B company but it’s never been just about shoes.  Inc

Marketing + Social Media

  • Facebook is secretly building LOL, a cringe teen meme hub.  TechCrunch
  • Facebook launches petition feature, its next battlefield.  TechCrunch
  • Consumers say brands shouldn’t bring politics to the Super Bowl.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Luke Wilson gets close in Colgate’s Super Bowl ad.  AdWeek
  • Pew published a study of how Facebook users feel about targeting.  Pew
  • Snap’s user growth still seems to be sputtering.  Fast Company 
  • Amazon is a looming giant in influencer marketing.  Digiday
  • Fortnite’s digital goods are a key to the future of global trade.  Bloomberg

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Walmart and VC firms see two paths for DTC brands.  Retail Dive
  • Nike’s big bet on the future of connected shoes.  Fast Company 
  • Investment dollars continue to pour into DTC brands.  AdAge
  • Squad is the new screen-sharing chat app everyone will copy.  TechCrunch
  • How three legacy brands are using tech to personalize beauty.  AdWeek

International

  • Google gets a $57M fine from France for GDPR violations.  AdAge

Weekly Industry Brief: 1.14.2019

I’m back! I hope your 2019 is off to a great start. Here is a recap of news from the last couple of weeks.  As always, sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline. Cheers!

Brands and Retailers

  • Amazon claims a record-breaking holiday season by items sold.  CNBC
  • Winning in an era of unprecedented disruption: a perspective on US retail.  McKinsey
  • How Shopify built an $800M partner ecosystem. Digiday
  • Walmart to add 2,000 tech hires.  Fortune 
  • ASOS CEO on the next ecommerce frontier.  Business of Fashion
  • Refillable packaging is the trend quietly taking over luxury beauty.  Fashionista
  • Nail and waxing salons are among the few that will survive the retail apocolypse.  Axios
  • Will 2019 be the year that clothing subscriptions take over? Forbes
  • Seven social issues that CEO’s will prioritize in 2019.  Fast Company
  • Kroger and Microsoft build a futuristic grocery store.  Bloomberg
  • Amazon Go could generation $4.5B with plan for 3,000 stores.  Retail Dive
  • Target hints at larger wellness ambitions.  Glossy 
  • Target is on track to have its best full year of sales growth in 13 years.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Amazon offers product sampling program to brands.  Forbes 
  • Despite setbacks, Nike is soaring with direct-to-consumer offense. Business of Fashion
  • Ulta has cracked beauty’s secret in the Amazon era.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Amazon, Lego and Wayfair join the pop-up store boom.  Bloomberg
  • Walgreens to shed $1B in annual costs.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Gap plans to shutter one of it’s major New York retail stores.  Bloomberg
  • Gymboree shops for bankruptcy financing as it prepares filing. The Wall Street Journal 

Marketing and Social Media

  • Instagram’s ecommerce success is building with Stories.  MarketingLand
  • Facebook has a new Stories feature for event sharing.  The Verge
  • Amazon will win advertising dollars away from Facebook admid privacy concerns. ReCode
  • WeWork rebranding as The We Company.  Business Insider
  • YouTube makes it easier to navigate through videos in its app.  TechCrunch
  • Brands dish out $200M on fake influencers a year.  Retail Gazette
  • Skittles’ big play on Super Bowl Sunday will be…an actual play.  AdWeek
  • Facebook, cryptocurrency and the future of mobile commerce.  Forbes
  • Is 2019 the year of paid loyalty? Lululemon, CVS and Loblaw are game to find out.  Forbes
  • NBCUniversal announces streaming service that will be free to paid TV subscribers.  TechCrunch
  • An egg has dethroned Kylie Jenner for the most Instagram likes ever.  Fast Company 
  • Instagram’s digital ad share to double despite Facebook issues.  AdAge
  • Tiffany’s gets serious about diamond sourcing.  AdAge

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Adidas can now make specialized shoes for runners in different cities thanks to robots.  Quartz
  • How retail changes when algorithms curate everything we buy.  Harvard Business Review
  • The future of beauty was on display at CES. CNN
  • American Eagle Outfitters launches interactive fitting rooms at flagships nationwide.  MarketWatch
  • These companies want to fix the trillion dollar returns problem.  CNBC
  • WeWork is investing in super foods.  Fast Company
  • Report says that Slack is planing an IPO in 2019.  Fast Company
  • Banking startup N26 raises $300M in $2.7B valuation.  TechCrunch

International

  • As Walmart takes on China’s booming delivery market, it’s going for a smaller store.  CNBC
  • Germany outlaws Amazon’s one-click Dash buttons.  Engadget
  • How Europe’s Zalando is fighting off Amazon and building the Spotify of fashion.  Business of Fashion 
  • Chinese tech giant Baidu will help Walmart deliver groceries in America.  Motley Fool