Weekly Industry Brief: 6.18.2018

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

Brands and Retailers

  • Is co-working the next hot retail concept?  Retail Dive
  • These brands are benefiting from fumbles at Victoria’s Secret.  CNBC
  • To compete with Amazon, big-name consumer brands have to become more like it.  Havard Business Review
  • CoverGirl is opening its first store.  Elle
  • Rent the Runway extends logistics tools to luxury fashion brands.  Fast Company
  • Google enters deal with Carrefour to sell food online.  Bloomberg
  • Zara goes high-tech in race with Amazon.  Bloomberg
  • Home Depot sets $1.2B supply-chain overhaul.  The Wall Street Journal
  • AT&T completes its acquisition of Time Warner.  TechCrunch
  • Amazon is facing questions from U.S. senators about Echo privacy.  AdAge
  • Adobe could be the next $10B software company.  TechCrunch
  • Amazon’s clever machines are moving from the warehouse to headquarters.  Bloomberg
  • JetBlue founder launching another low-cost airline.  Fast Company

Marketing + Social Media

  • Voice assistants are the new marketing battleground.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Cannabis has officially arrived in the realm of luxury wellness.  Quartz
  • Inside Coach’s latest bid for brand love.  Retail Dive
  • Inside Nike’s mission to change the future of our planet.  Dazed
  • Snap introduces ads for its stoppable AR games.  VentureBeat
  • How Depop is catering to Gen Z and millennials to get an edge over competitors.  Glossy
  • Get ready to activate marketing campaigns with mobile wallets.  Forbes
  • Facebook is building a $750M data center in Huntsville, Alabama.  Fortune
  • Instagram’s new shopping bag icon adds commerce element to advertisers’ Stories.  MarketingLand
  • In study, Conde Nast seeks to understand which factors influence purchase on the path to purchase.  Glossy
  • Oprah partners with Apple on subscription video service.  Fast Company
  • Snapchat builds app services for Tinder and more.  AdAge
  • Unilever says it won’t work with influencers who buy followers.  CNBC

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • L’oreal is bringing the makeup counter experience into your home with live-streaming and AR.  AdWeek
  • Macy’s and B8ta partner on new retail concept.  Retail Dive
  • Why are grocery retailers teaming up with tech giants?  Reuters
  • Microsoft is developing its own cashier less store technology.  TechCrunch
  • Marketing startup Influential raises $12M from WME and others.  TechCrunch
  • Zelle forecast to overtake Venmo this year.  TechCrunch
  • WeWork in talks with SoftBank to double valuation to as much as $40B.  The Wall Street Journal
  • LOLA raises $24M for a subscription service that ships tampons, pads and now condoms.  TechCrunch
  • Square jumps on receiving license to let New York customers buy and sell bitcoin.  Bloomberg
  • These high-tech clothes make you money by selling your data.  Wired

International

  • Chinese shoppers look to live videos to discover American beauty brands.  Glossy
  • How ecommerce with drove delivery is taking flight in China.  The Economist
  • Google invests in JD.com.  Seeking Alpha

Weekly Industry Brief: 11.13.2017

Happy Monday! This week I have a special section of headlines about Alibaba’s Double 11/Singles Day event from the weekend.  Next week is Black Friday here in the US, which means we have one more Monday before Cyber Monday.  Cheers to a successful holiday!

As always, sources can be found in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Alibaba’s Singles Day Event

  • Alibaba’s Singles Day racks up $8.6B in first hour. Bloomberg
  • Alibaba’s Singles Day sales smash record with $25B haul. Fortune
  • Alibaba lets AI, robots and drones do heavy lifting for Singles Day. South China Morning Post
  • Alibaba’s Singles Day sales hit record. New York Times
  • Alibaba tests 60 futuristic pop-up stores across China for Singles Day. Digiday
  • Lessons from Alibaba’s $25B shopping event. AdAge
  • Singles Day 2017 highlights Alibaba’s intent to become a global leader. Forbes
  • Alibaba and JD.com squabble over Singles Day sales calculations. Women’s Wear Daily
  • Singles Day faces fatigue in China. The Wall Street Journal
  • JD.com generated $19B in sales at its rival event. Fortune
  • Black Friday, Prime Day and Singles Day: When do people spend the most? Fortune

Brands and Retailers

  • CVS will offer next day delivery of prescriptions. New York Times
  • Amazon Cash, the service that lets you use cash to shop Amazon online, arrives at 7-Eleven. TechCrunch
  • Burberry shares are plunging as investors flee new CEO’s expensive plans. Fortune
  • Online retailers are desperate to stem a surging tide of returns. Bloomberg
  • Amazon developing a free, ad-supported version of Prime. AdAge
  • Nordstrom is launching 24/7 curbside pickup for the holidays. Fashionista
  • Victoria Beckham to collaborate with Reebok in 2018. Fashionista

Marketing and Social Media

  • How Vimeo is preparing for the future of video storytelling. Fast Company
  • Snapchat’s programmatic ads fetch $3-$8 CPMs. Digiday
  • Tencent could play a role redesigning Snapchat following $2B investment. Techcrunch
  • Instagram might let you follow hashtags. Fast Company
  • How Kith built its brand in niche streetwear. New York Times
  • Facebook relaunches Events app as Facebook Local, adds bars and food. Techcrunch
  • Spotify expands merch to beauty products, sells out tickets for Who We Be. Techcrunch
  • Women-only social club The Wing launches a bi-annual print magazine. AdWeek
  • At Tiffany, the Fifth Avenue face-lift starts at home. New York Times
  • Crew cast seven ‘real people’ in its 2017 holiday gift guide. Fashionista
  • Amazon expands its influencer program to include Twitter and Instagram, in addition to YouTube. Techcrunch

Startup and Emerging Tech

  • Music.ly, a Chinese app big in the U.S. sells for $1B. New York Times
  • Tinder wants to spice up your love life with AI and location services. Android Authority
  • Stitch Fix gets a close look from consumer VC firm ahead of IPO. Techcrunch
  • Heyday raises $3M for personalized skincare and facials. Techcrunch
  • Apple has acquired imaging sensor startup InVisage Technologies. Techcrunch
  • Voice-enabled smart speakers to reach 55% of U.S. households by 2022. Techcrunch

International

  • Costco to expand internationally; will launch in France. Bloomberg
  • Birchbox opens first UK standalone store. Vogue
  • Amazon says Australia launch imminent. Business of Fashion
  • PayPal launches domestic payments in India. Business Line

 

Weekly Industry Brief: 12.6.2016

Here is your industry news over the last week.  Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brand/Retailer

  • Amazon captured 31% of online spending over Cyber Weekend. Link
  • Google says it will run entirely on renewable energy in 2017. Link
  • Global online sales of apparel, footwear rise 13% on Cyber Weekend. Link
  • Minkoff to offer self-checkout option at Soho store. Link
  • Burberry, Coach shares up on rumored takeover talks. Link
  • Amazon opening a store that will eliminate checkout – and lines. Link
  • Johanna Ortiz to launch capsule for Moda Operandi. Link
  • Patagonia donating its $10M in Black Friday sales to charity. Link
  • Bralettes lifting sales at American Eagle. Link
  • Birthday at Burberry? Luxury brands add personal services. Link
  • Can fast-fashion brands like Zara go sustainable? Link
  • Starbucks CEO steps down again. Link
  • Adidas just opened its largest store in the world. Link
  • British Fashion Council teams with Google on digital fashion education program. Link
  • Bohoo enters bid for NastyGal. Link
  • You can now order Oreos online. Link
  • Under Armour to become official uniform supplier to MLB. Link
  • Reformation teamed up with Haim for a very on brand New Year’s Eve collection. Link
  • Fast fashion: How a Zara coat went from design to Fifth Avenue in 25 days. Link
  • With $720 self-tying sneaker, Nike loosens ties to retailers, encourages customers to buy direct through Nike+ app. Link
  • Rent-the-runway mines user data to design sleek new flagship. Link
  • Todd Snyder opens NYC flagship. Link
  • US retailers value enthusiasm over experience for holiday hires. Link

Marketing/Social

  • While we weren’t looking, Snapchat revolutionized social networks. Link
  • Twitter buys little-known startup to gain a new head of product. Link
  • Tyson Foods launches new venture fund to back food and agriculture startups. Link
  • Microsoft’s new chatbot won’t talk politics or racism. Link
  • Domino’s rewards loyal patrons with shares, profits. Link
  • Twitter struggles to turn prominence into profit. Link

Startup/Emerging Tech

  • Cult beauty brand Glossier raises $24M to expand into retail, international. Link
  • Bringing virtual reality to a population that needs it for something more than gaming. Link
  • With arrival of touch controllers, Oculus Rift finally reaches its potential. Link
  • Rag & Bone takes on virtual reality with Google. Link
  • Alexander McQueen designs a 3D-printed umbrella. Link
  • Six mobile apps to make holiday shopping easier. Link
  • Marriott launches its own tech startup accelerator. Link
  • Hearst is launching a 10-person team tasked with building voice-activated experiences. Link

International

  • EU proposes simplifying VAT rules to boost online trade. Link
  • Amazon opens showroom in Beijing to showcase US and UK imports. Link
  • com targets Asian brands, new languages. Link
  • No price like home: Big spenders reappear in China. Link
  • McDonald’s may sell China assets. Link
  • The way Indian’s buy fashion is changing. Here’s how. Link
  • Myntra bets on artificial intelligence to drive growth. Link

Weekly Industry Brief: 1.11.2016

Here are some of the things that happened over the last week in retail, technology, and fashion. All sources can be found in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Have a great week!

Brand/Retailer:

  • Apple Music now has more than 10M subscribers. Link
  • Warm weather cost apparel stores hundreds of millions this fall and winter. Link
  • Ace to open hotel in New Orleans. Link
  • Hudon’s Bay to acquire Gilt Groupe for $250M. Link
  • What’s next for the American department store? Link
  • Why Finish Line is closing 150 stores even though ‘athleisure’ is booming. Link
  • Off-price retailers like TJ Maxx and Ross are thriving. Link
  • Holiday sales rise but not all retailers are cheery. Link
  • Holiday season winners and losers. Link
  • LuLuLemon reaches a turning point. Link
  • Macy’s slashes 4,000 jobs after huge drop in holiday season sales. Link
  • Old Navy sales tumble. Link
  • Kohl’s is debating whether to take itself private or break up the company. Link

Marketing/Social:

  • Instagram is now curating videos about live events. Link
  • Snapchat is building its own ad platform. Link
  • Target partnering with SoulCycle. Link
  • Burberry debuts on Apple TV with menswear fashion show. Link
  • Longer tweets said to be coming soon to Twitter. Link
  • What lies ahead for marketing in an increasingly ad-free future. Link
  • The White House joins Snapchat. Link
  • Burberry runs lunar New Year WeChat campaign. Link
  • Twitter wants to let brands turn your tweets into ads. Link

Startup:

  • How this bootstrapped company, Homepolish, is competing with a rival that raised $200M. Link
  • Japan’s fashion rental service AirCloset snags $8M. Link

International:

  • Amazon is letting UK shoppers to buy now, pay later. Link
  • Hong Kong retail sales figures fall for 12th straight month. Link
  • Wayfair roles out Canadian ecommerce site. Link
  • What Amazon Prime is like around the world. Link
  • Louis Vuitton sues counterfeit online sellers in China. Link
  • Victoria’s Secret to open first Southeast Asia flagship in Singapore. Link
  • Dolce & Gabbana appeals to Muslim consumers. Link

Mobile/Wearbles/Emerging Technology:

  • Under Armour gets serious about fitness tech with HealthBox, a big box of gadgets. Link
  • L’Oreal unveils smart skincare patch at CES. Link
  • Samsung’s smart clothes are wearables you’d actually wear. Link
  • Fashion icon Iris Apfel is designing wearables for Wisewear. Link
  • Apple acquires startup that reads emotions from facial expression. Link
  • Apple rolls out new betas across its platforms. Link

WEEKLY INDUSTRY BRIEF: 11.23.2015

Happy Monday! Check out industry highlights from the last week.  Sources can be found in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Holiday:

  • Amazon bets on same-day delivery this year to target the procrastinator. Link
  • Best Buy reports softer sales, cautions ahead of holiday quarter. Link
  • WalMart is about to turn Cyber Monday into Cyber Sunday. Link
  • DHL’s new U.S. head talks holiday ecommerce, global trade and China. Link

Brand/Retailer:

  • Sephora’s new retail stores will take cues from YouTube. Link
  • ASOS launches wedding line. Link
  • Retailers scale up online sales distribution networks. Link
  • Consumers increasingly seeking services over things, giving new challenge for department stores. Link
  • Ikea tests click-and-collect in smaller stores. Link
  • Macy’s is launching a Korean beauty shop-in-shop. Link
  • Goop will open a holiday pop-up shop in New York City. Link
  • Polo Ralph Lauren debuts interactive fitting rooms at Fifth Avenue flagship. Link
  • Abercrombie shares rise after third-quarter sales top estimates. Link
  • Here’s why Gap just cut its 2015 profit forecast. Link
  • Martha Stewart ditches eBay for Amazon. Link

Marketing/Social:

  • The potential of geolocation for revolutionizing retail. Link
  • Polyvore on why they sold to Yahoo. Link
  • On Snapchat, brands trust influencers, but verify with only screenshots. Link
  • Conde Nast to shutter Details. Link
  • Facebook launches Fundraiser product to allow nonprofits to set up campaign pages. Link
  • Snapchat’s lackluster ad business threatens $16B valuation. Link
  • Jimmy Fallon unveils brilliant collaboration with J.Cew. Link

Startups:

  • LivingSocial offers a cautionary tale to today’s startups. Link
  • Caeden, a wearable tech start-up, introduces a smart bracelet. Link

International:

  • Apple Pay now available in Canada. Link
  • Louis Vuitton to close shops in China amid luxury slowdown. Link

Mobile/Emerging Tech:

  • Samsung Gear VR sold out online at Amazon and Best Buy. Link
  • Google lets users tap mobile apps without downloading them. Link
  • Google brings app into browsers, blurring mobile-desktop lines. Link
  • Dunkin Donuts tests mobile ordering in bid to catch up with Starbucks. Link
  • Can artificial intelligence sell shoes? Link
  • Facebook at Work gets its own version of Messenger with debut of Work Chat. Link
  • Brands look far and wide for a niche in virtual reality. Link

Weekly Industry Brief: 12.1.2014

Happy Cyber Monday! Below is a recap of news in fashion, retail, and technology over the last week. All sources can be found in the hyper-linked text after each headline:

Holiday:

  • Black Friday ecommerce spending up 26%. Link
  • On Twitter, twice as many people talking about Black Friday this year. Link
  • Best Buy’s website down for about 90 minutes on Black Friday. Link
  • WalMart, Target report strong Thanksgiving Day traffic. Link
  • Kohl’s, Walmart, Apple see Black Friday social buzz. Link
  • Black Friday online sales up 8.5% over last year, 20% of sales from iOS. Link
  • Online sales set Black Friday record. Link
  • Yoox group posts record sales on Thanksgiving and Black Friday. Link
  • Macy’s previews Cyber Monday on Sunday. Link
  • Mobile role in holiday shopping expected to grow. Link
  • Net-a-porter sale crashes part of site. Link

Retailer + Brand News:

  • Ebay Now pulled from App Store as company rethinks same-day delivery plans. Link
  • Gap sets deal with Germany’s Zalando. Link
  • NY Subway riders can now shop on Amazon while underground. Link
  • How Target identifies the hottest retail tech 18 months before it’s cool. Link
  • Nordstrom partners with eBay for smarter fitting rooms. Link
  • Zady to open three airport pop-up shops for the holidays. Link
  • These robots are processing Amazon orders. Link
  • Milennials to fuel growth of sporty brands. Link
  • Urban Outfitters, Nicole Miller in Wanelo “buy” button launch. Link
  • Nasty Gal’s first brick-and-mortar store encourages selfies. Link

Social Media + Marketing:

  • Twitter now lets brands tweet deals to users with a new offer button. Link
  • American Girl pledges to give up to 1,000 dolls a day. Link
  • Facebook is intensifying its efforts to filter out status updates posted by businesses. Link
  • Twitter is tracking users’ installed apps for ad targeting. Link
  • Buzzfeed crosses $100M in revenue. Link
  • Twitter adds coupons to its commerce plans. Link
  • Vloggers paid for promotions urged to include clear labeling. Link
  • Twitter experiments with engagement stats directly in tweets. Link

Start-ups:

  • Anonymous messaging app Yik Yak said to raise $62M. Link
  • Parcel aims to end missed packages after hours. Link
  • Pop-up shop startup, Appear Here, raises $7.5M. Link

International:

[APAC]

  • Fitbit gears up for Asia expansion. Link
  • Lazada, Rocket Internet’s Amazon clone in Southeast Asia, raises $250M. Link

[EU]

  • Macy’s Black Friday arrives in the UK as American retailer unveils online shopping deals. Link
  • Wired and Buzzfeed give Germany a try. Link
  • Black Friday takes hold in UK. Link

[AU]

  • Amazon tipped to open Aussie warehouse. Link
  • H&M sister brand COS opens first Australian store. Link

[A/ME]

  • Jumia raises $150M for its African ecommerce business. Link

Mobile, Tablet, + Wearables:

  • Smartphones spur growth of Thanksgiving couch commerce. Link
  • Top 10 best Android fashion apps. Link
  • Xiaomi’s cheap smartphones make a splash in Indonesia. Link
  • Ralph Lauren introduces leather bag with internal LED and built-in USB charger. Link
  • Luxury watchmakers crack down on copycat Android Wear watch faces. Link
  • Neiman Marcus now in Apple Passbook. Link
  • Hammacher Schlemmer tests augmented reality catalog for holiday. Link

Other:

  • Girl Scouts to sell cookies online. Link

Weekly Industry Round Up: 8.25.2014

Top industry news from last week.  All sources can be found in the hyperlink after the headline:

Retailer News:

  • Nordstrom completes Trunk Club acquisition. Link
  • Office supply etailer Poppin raises another $17M in funding. Link
  • Home shopping site Wayfair files for IPO. Link
  • Thrillest: the newsletter that became a $100M men’s business. Link
  • How Tory Burch built a $1B brand so quickly. Link
  • Tom’s sells 50% stake to Bain Capital to fund sales growth. Link
  • ‘Athleisure’ trand booms as sweatpants leave the gym. Link
  • Retailers wait for shoppers to catch up. Link
  • Starbucks to test coffee-dispensing trucks at three colleges. Link
  • Why online retailers are turning to physical stores. Link
  • Ralph Lauren launches wearable tech apparel at the U.S. Open. Link
  • How Modcloth built a culture of tech experimentation. Link
  • Rocket Internet preps for IPO. Link
  • Zalando said to be on verge of IPO. Link
  • American Eagle comparable sales down. Link
  • Abercrombie & Fitch debuts its first collection featuring the color black. Link

Social Media + Marketing:

  • Tumblr partner will now scan photos for clues about brand affiliation. Link
  • Google makes it easier for advertisers to track which ads generate phone calls. Link
  • Apple’s ‘Misunderstood’ nabs 2014 Emmy for outstanding commercial. Link
  • What marketers can learn from the ALS ice bucket challenge. Link
  • Marketers are sizing up the millennials. Link
  • Amazon prepares online advertising program. Link
  • PacSun partners with StyleHaul for Back-to-School campaign. Link
  • Snapchat planning ‘discovery’ portal for news, ads. Link
  • Twitter will use Stripe to put the ‘Buy’ buttons in tweets. Link
  • Instagram adds tools for brands. Link

Start-ups:

  • How mixing fashion and data can make Rent the Runway tech’s next billion dollar star. Link
  • Website lets you name your price on high-end clothing. Link
  • Online delivery services still struggle to turn a profit. Link

International:

[APAC]

  • Gap to open 40 stores in India. Link
  • ASOS signs Digitas for China social media and digital marketing strategy. Link
  • India to be launch pad for Amazon’s plan to deliver packages using drones. Link
  • Amazon enters Shanghai free trade zone to boost China offering. Link
  • Baidu invests in artificial intelligence. Link
  • Victoria’s Secret in China expansion. Link
  • Western luxury goods go on sale in China. Link
  • Amazon expands its ‘Amazon Coins’ virtual currency to Japan & Australia. Link
  • New restrictions on online billing in India may impact international ecommerce companies. Link

[AU/NZ]

  • Australia’s Cotton On enters Brazil. Link
  • Surfstitch buys out majority holder Billabong, prepares potential IPO. Link
  • Zara opens tenth Australian store. Link

[EU]

  • H&M launches ecommerce in Spain. Link
  • Klarna, an online payment system popular in EU, eyes global expansion. Link
  • Groupon aims to shift from daily deals to retail marketplace in UK. Link

[CA]

  • Nordstrom bets on slow, cautious entry into Canada. Link
  • Elle Canada partners with Hudson’s Bay on ecommerce, video push. Link

[A/ME]

  • Blue Nile unveils Arabic language ecommerce site. Link

Mobile, Tablet, + Wearables:

  • Uber opens up API to integrate in other apps. Link
  • Gap focuses on mobile for fall campaign. Link
  • PayPal rolls out one-touch mobile checkout for apps. Link
  • Millennials say ‘Venmo Me’ to fuel mobile-payment surge. Link
  • Uber Corner Store turns the transit app into delivery service for daily staples. Link
  • Zappos boosts shoe sales with native integration in MapMyFitness app. Link
  • Talking on tablets: phablets on the rise in Asia. Link
  • Square expands its cash advance service. Link
  • Wireless location beacons are now the size of stickers. Link

Other:

  • Wells Fargo launches accelerator to promote innovation in financial services. Link
  • Vegas gets a vending machine for flat shoes. Link
  • UPS confirms security breach. Link
  • McDonald’s digital plans include music, mobile ordering. Link

Weekly Industry Round Up: 8.18.2014

Top industry news from last week.  All sources can be found in the hyperlink after the headline:

Retailer News:

  • Urban Outfitters masters social by mimicking millennials’ behaviors. Link
  • Nordstrom stock drops after slow sales growth. Link
  • Editd tells retailers exactly what consumers want in real-time. Link
  • Etsy launches its wholesale platform for retailers, allowing independent boutiques to buy items from Etsy wholesalers. Link
  • Gilt Groupe co-founder takes aim at beauty business. Link
  • Weak retail sales point to slowdown in U.S. consumer spending. Link
  • Nordstrom launches charitable private-label brand. Link
  • Saks launches ecommerce activewear shop. Link
  • Amazon introduces credit card reader, taking on Square and PayPal. Link
  • Lucky Magazine merging with BeachMint. Link
  • The Kardashian’s launch jewelry line on ASOS. Link
  • Crew enters beauty with two scents. Link
  • Piperlime unveiled new website design and logo on Monday. Link
  • Steve Madden acquires Dolce Vita. Link
  • Nordstrom unveils price tag for Trunk Club: $350 Million. Link
  • The Grommet launches whole site. Link
  • Target to keep stores open later. Link
  • Online furniture king Wayfair files for IPO. Link
  • How Julep turned women’s self-blame into a hit new product. Link
  • Yahoo unveiled a new version of Yahoo Stores, aiming to boost revenues from ecommerce. Link
  • ASOS to sell erotic accessories range. Link
  • Matell to launch Barbie-inspired lines with Foever 21, Lord & Taylor, Wildfox this Fall. Link
  • ModCloth signs anti-Photoshop pledge. Link
  • Nike releases college-themed sneaker collection. Link

Social Media + Marketing:

  • More brands turning to Tweet-for-goodies campaigns. Link
  • Twitter adds video ads. Link
  • Twitter changes math on counting users who don’t see ads. Link
  • Old Navy’s tween web video push goes viral. Link
  • Facebook now tells whether mobile ads lead to desktop purchases. Link
  • Dell uses YouTube influencers to spread its back-to-school message to students. Link
  • Pinterest expands self-serve promoted pins platform to more businesses. Link
  • Groupon is adding 100 Snapchat followers a day. Link
  • Google buys Jetpac to give context to visual searches. Link
  • New Twitter experiment changes how favorites work. Link
  • Altuzarra for Target campaign plays up the Luxe factor. Link
  • Another look at LiketoKnowIt, the service making Instagram shoppable. Link

Start-ups:

  • Spring unveils Instagram-like shopping app. Link and Link
  • Into The Gloss heads into its next phase with a revamped team. Link
  • This app crawls the web to get you the best deal on almost any product. Link
  • Uber to test moving services in Atlanta and Nashville. Link
  • House Account makes independent boutiques shoppable via mobile. Link

International:

[APAC]

  • TopShop and Miss Selfridge to sell on China’s ShangPin. Link
  • Rakuten acquires online shopping service Slice. Link
  • Newegg now shipping to India and Singapore. Link
  • Meet Scoop Whoop, BuzzFeed’s fast-growing Indian clone. Link
  • Apple begins storing user data in China. Link
  • Ahead of Rocket Internet’s IPO, here are the numbers on its Southeast Asian ecommerce stores. Link
  • JD gets online shopping boost from WeChat, sees $10B in consumer sales in Q2. Link

[AU/NZ]

  • Forever 21 rumored to open first Australia store. Link
  • Global sports retailer Intersport springs into Australian market. Link
  • Sephora reveals the location of its first Australian store. Link

[EU]

  • Legendary UK menswear tailor sets up shop inside Bergdorf Goodman in the US. Link

[CA]

  • New head of Target Canada plots course for turnaround. Link

[A/ME]

  • Ikea to open Bahrain store. Link

[LATAM]

  • How Rocket Internet’s Dafiti is helping to shape the future of ecommerce in Latin America. Link

Mobile, Tablet, + Wearables:

  • OpenTable rolls out mobile payments in New York City. Link
  • Samsung acquires SmartThings, a fast-growing home automation startup. Link
  • eBags takes cues from Tinder for its ecommerce app. Link
  • Three trends that will make a difference in mobile payments. Link
  • Amazon’s Indian rival is proof that mobile shopping is taking over. Link
  • Apple’s sweet spot is the people who buy iPads and laptops together. Link
  • Amazon doubles the storage on its Kindle Paperwhite e-reader. Link
  • Carolina Herrera testing style app for luxury clients. Link

Other:

  • Starbucks’ secret to make every store feel unique. Link

Spring App – New Meaning for ‘Fast Fashion’

A new shopping app called Spring hit the market loudly this week.  Massive press coverage began right as the new app from Jello Labs appeared in the iTunes app store, with an impressive roster of sign-on partners including Alice + Olivia, Opening Ceremony, Warby Parker, Oscar de  la Renta, Levi’s and Nicole Miller.

The app lets users follow brands and designers, enabling a Instagram feed-like shopping experience from which customers can “like” products or check out right in the app without adding to a cart or going to another retailer’s site.  A more discovery-based experience is also enabled by browsing categories or shops not already followed.

From a user and design perspective the app is smooth…and for some maybe too smooth. Purchasing a $900 jacket becomes super easy, with a quick checkout process that includes an image-recognition credit card payment upload.

My take:  This app is definitely worth the download, even if just to get informed on all the buzz.  The app lives up to the hype of providing a new and innovative shopping experience, specifically in the luxury and designer market.  The fact that this new ecommerce experience started as app yet still maintains its high visual aesthetic really nails the market opportunity of mobile and ecommerce. It will be exciting to watch the app evolve, and perhaps to count the days for a curated brick-and-mortar experience complement to the business.

Check out some headlines from around the web:

Spring, Not Instagram, Unveils an Instagram with a Buy Button (Recode)

New Shopping App Spring Makes it Scary Easy to Buy Things with One Swipe (Business Insider)

Quick Purchases, Sleek Brands, No Social: How New App Spring Looks to Crack Mobile Shopping (Forbes)

This Shopping App Finally Makes the Mall Obsolete (Wired)