Weekly Industry Brief: 6.17.2019

Happy Monday! Here is your weekly recap of industry news.  Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brands + Retailers

  • How distressed retailers stacked up in Q1 2019.  Retail Dive
  • From Olay to L’occitane, is refillable packaging the future of sustainable beauty? Vogue
  • Amazon’s US online marketshare estimate cut to 37.7% from 47%. AdAge
  • Walmart Grocery’s Amazon Prime rival costs $98/year.  Engadget
  • Fedex and Amazon cutting ties.  Motely Fool
  • Chanel’s sales surpass $11Billion.  Business of Fashion
  • Why Walmart wants to sell its own line of steaks.  CNN
  • H&M sales rise for 5th consecutive quarter.  Bloomberg
  • New York’s MTA plans retail revamp of highly trafficked subway stations.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Restoration Hardware could move some manufacturing to US.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Lululemon plans growth in new markets, product lines.  Reuters
  • Chewy.com raises $1B in IPO.  CNBC
  • Poshmark expands into home category.  Forbes

Social Media + Marketing

  • Virtual brand promoters are so lifelike, you might just believe what you see.  The New York Times
  • Amazon triples down on free video with ‘IMDb TV.’ Fast Company
  • Inside Snapchat’s new pitch to video advertisers: a penny a view.  AdAge
  • Business Insider and eMarketer combine into one intelligence company.  AdAge
  • Gen Z loves TikTok.  Can fashion brands learn to love it too?  Business of Fashion
  • Why the pixel is essential to social commerce’s success. eMarketer
  • Facebook says 140M people view its Watch video portal on a daily basis.  AdAge
  • The Pinterest Partners program added shopping speciality.  AdWeek
  • Amazon launches personalization services for marketers.  TechCrunch
  • Inside the multi-billion dollar product recommendation economy.  Business of Fashion

Start Ups, Acquisitions + Emerging Tech

  • Domino’s Pizza plans robot delivers with self-driving minivans in 2019.  Fast Company
  • Comcast unveils a remote for changing channels with your eyes.  Fast Company
  • The burgeoning field of psycho-dermatology explores the link between mental health and skin.  Fashionista
  • ASOS launches virtual AR catwalk.  Essential Retail
  • Target invests in blockchain to support its supply chain.  Forbes
  • MIT develops system to give robots more human senses.  TechCrunch

International

  • Chinese millennials are re-writing the future of the luxury brand experience.  Jing Daily
  • SoulCycle arrives in the UK.  The Guardian
  • Deliveroo pushes into UK provinces with help from Amazon.  Bloomberg
  • Farfetch launches on JD.com in China.  WWD
  • Alibaba proposes share split ahead of reported $20B Hong Kong IPO.  TechCrunch

Weekly Industry Brief: 12.17.2018

And just like that, we’re on my last post for the year!

Back in the beginning of 2018, Amazon had just announced 20 finalists for their second headquarters and Toys ‘R’ Us was still a store. A lot has happened since then and I’m proud to have archived it here.

I am wishing all of you a wonderful holiday and a happy new year.  Hopefully you are closing out the year by spending with family, friends, and loved ones, taking time to reflect on this year and planting seeds for all of the potential of the year ahead.

(P.S. If you want a quick cry, check out the Google Year in Search video.)

With Love, Carolann

Brands + Retailers

  • Google will open a new $1B campus in NYC.  Fast Company
  • Report says Johnson & Johnson knew its baby powder had asbestos for decades.  Fast Company
  • Starbucks opens first east coast reserve roastery.  AdAge
  • Facebook discloses bug that opened private photos to apps.  AdAge
  • The data New York gave to Amazon.  The New York Times
  • Here’s how Nike, Alibaba and Walmart are reinventing retail.  Wired
  • A look inside Macy’s new retail strategy.  Retail Dive
  • Dollar General has suddenly become one of the biggest retailers in the US by store count.  Business Insider
  • Retailers embrace payment apps to sidestep $90B in swipe fees.  Bloomberg
  • Amazon looks to limit products that don’t drive profit.  Forbes
  • Amazon eyes private label toys.  Retail Dive
  • Starbucks adding delivery services to more than 2,000 stores via Uber Eats.  TechCrunch
  • Instacart and Amazon-owned Whole Foods are parting ways.  TechCrunch
  • Aerie momentum continues for American Eagle.  Forbes
  • What every direct-to-consumer brand can learn from Nike.  Forbes
  • How Barney’s, Saks and Neiman Marcus are tackling luxury beauty.  Glossy

Marketing + Social Media

  • The making of a computer-generated influencer.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Why beauty and wellness brands like New York City subway ads.  Glossy
  • Facebook’s version of YouTube takes shape with pranksters, magicians and cartoons.  The New York Times 
  • Stories from inside the $9B Instagram economy.  Fast Company
  • Instagram is testing creator accounts for high-profile influencers.  The Verge
  • Hulu introduces new programmatic marketplace.  AdAge
  • Facebook rolls out search ads and they’re currently free.  AdAge
  • Rookie cataloged a generation of girlhood.  The New York Times
  • Instagram will start telling brands which products users bookmark which could be used for ad targeting.  CNBC

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Walmart will soon use hundreds of AI robot janitors to scrub the floors of US stores.  CNBC
  • Procter & Gamble buys Walker & Co.  AdAge
  • Headspace vs. Calm: the meditation battle that’s anything but zen.  The Wall Street Journal
  • How “brick-and-mobile” is transforming in-store shopping.  Retail Dive
  • Powerful pricing: the next frontier in apparel and fashion advanced analytics.  McKinsey

International

  • eCommerce is thriving in Africa despite hurdles to the “last mile.”  Quartz
  • Walmart partners with Rakuten to open its first ecommerce store in Japan.  TechCrunch

Weekly Industry Brief: 12.10.2018

Happy Monday! Here is a quick recap of news from around the industry in the last week.  Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline. Hope your holidays have been successful so far 🙂

Brands + Retailers

  • Marlboro maker buys $1.8B stake in cannabis company.  Adage
  • Amazon tests its cashier-less technology for bigger stores.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Amazon’s cashier-free Go stores may be coming to airports.  TechCrunch
  • What big consumer brands can do to compete in a digital economy.  Harvard Business Review
  • Walgreens launches next-day drug delivery with FedEx.  Forbes
  • Chanel is showing the first signs of evolving into a more flexible, millennial-oriented company.  Glossy
  • Walmart to acquire home decor site Art.com. CNBC
  • Stella McCartney, Burberry among brands uniting against climate change.  CNN
  • How digitally native brands are changing the American mall.  Glossy
  • Verizon trims 7% of staff in preparation for a 5G future.  TechCrunch

Marketing + Social Media

  • Google’s search data shows YouTube’s influence over this season’s hottest toys.  TechCrunch
  • Why the New York Times is going all in on march.  Fashionista
  • Lyft drops ‘L’ in solidarity with screwed Brooklyn commuters.  AdAge
  • Lululemon expands test loyalty program with annual fee.  CNBC
  • How Adidas is evolving dark social to stay ahead of the game.  Marketing Week
  • TV can now complete the attribution puzzle.  AdAge
  • Will ad dollars continue shifting from Facebook to Instagram in 2019?  AdWeek
  • Pringles returns to the Super Bowl.  AdAge
  • Social media tops newspapers as a top source for adults.  TechCrunch
  • Instagram adds voice messaging feature to Instagram Direct.  Fast Company

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Wearables are pivoting from fitness to wellness.  Glossy
  • Target’s Christmas tree sales aided by augmented-reality feature.  Bloomberg
  • Google has acquired one of India’s most popular train-tracking apps.  TechCrunch
  • Amazon Music customers can now talk to Alexa more naturally.  TechCrunch
  • Target replaces startup accelerator program, partners with German retailer.  Biz Journals
  • VR headset market grew 8.3% in Q3.  VentureBeat
  • American Airlines is offering biometric boarding at LAX terminal.  Fast Company

International

  • China’s Alibaba takes on Amazon in European cloud.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Macy’s fully exits China after closing its last online shop.  ZDNet
  • Amazon is planning to open a flagship Go store in London.  Fast Company 

Weekly Industry Brief: 11.12.2018

Hi!  Here’s your recap of industry news from the last week. Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brands + Retailers

  • Amazon captures 30% of online grocery spending.  RetailDive
  • Wall Street analysts are now selling more data, less analysis.  The Wall Street Journal
  • LVMH forms partnership for cross-border payments help.  RetailDive
  • Dollar Shave Club branches into fine fragrances and vending machines.  AdAge
  • CVS to test stores with added health services next year after Aetna deal closes.  CNBC
  • Walmart’s celebrity collaborations for the holidays include Ellen DeGeneres and Kendall and Kylie Jenner.  Variety
  • Sears considers selling up to $900M in debt.  Bloomberg
  • Victoria’s Secret’s CMO facing backlash for controversial comments about casting.  Fashionista
  • Apple pumps up its Amazon listings with iPhones, iPads and more.  CNet
  • See the Amazon HQ2 picks: Crystal City and Long Island City.  CNN
  • Ralph Lauren builds on plan to win young shoppers.  The Wall Street Journal

Marketing + Social Media

  • How much does brand DNA matter?  Business of Fashion
  • How digitally native brands negotiate wholesale partnerships.  Digiday
  • Pinterest gets a redesigned feed that looks a lot like Instagram.  The Verge
  • Facebook goes after TikTok with the debut of Lasso.  Fortune
  • Lyft is launching a rider loyalty program in December.  TechCrunch
  • Are you ready for the nano-influencers?  The New York Times
  • Generation Z and its implications for companies.  McKinsey
  • Amazon is mailing a printed holiday toy catalog to millions of customers.  CNBC
  • Google and Amazon pursue shopper marketing budgets.  Digiday
  • Glossier emphasizes experience at 2nd permanent store.  The New York Times

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • How Yoox is using artificial intelligence to assist design in its private label brand.  Glossy
  • SAP acquires Qualtrics for $8B just before its IPO.  Forbes
  • Google and Sephora are bringing beauty tutorials to the newest home device.  AdWeek
  • Snap’s former No. 2 exec is building an online shopping startup.  ReCode
  • American Eagle invests in Dormify.  Seeking Alpha
  • WalMart building an AI lab insides one of its stores.  TechCrunch
  • Samsung unveils its foldable smartphone.  Fortune

International

  • China’s Singles’ Day brings in a record-breaking $30B.  Fast Company
  • Alibaba rival JD sees Singles’ Day revenue jump 27% thanks to offline push.  TechCrunch
  • JD.com competes for luxury partners with tech and white gloves.  Jing Daily
  • China’s obsession with short videos has its internet giants worried.  TechCrunch
  • With an assist from Alibaba, Starbucks’ China delivery strategy offers clues of what may be coming in the U.S. Digiday

Weekly Industry Brief: 11.6.2018

I was busy celebrating my two year anni last night, so Happy Tuesday! Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

P.S. Did you vote today?

Brands + Retailers:

  • Dollar Shave Club expands into fine fragrances.  AdAge
  • Amazon is now offering free shipping on all holiday orders.  Fast Company
  • Facebook opens small business shops inside Macy’s.  TechCrunch
  • CoverGirl cosmetics are now certified cruelty-free.  Fast Company
  • Seven retailers that made pivotal deals in 2018.  RetailDive
  • Bonobos and Nike get their own branded shops on Jet.com.  TechCrunch
  • Uber will now pay college tuition for its most prized drivers.  Fast Company
  • Amazon reportedly to choose two cities for HQ2.  The New York Times
  • Dollar General unveils urban store formate.  Bloomberg
  • Walmart surpasses Amazon as online shoppers most popular grocer.  Bloomberg
  • Canada Goose buys footwear brand Baffin.  Financial Post
  • Sources say Toys ‘R Us plans pop-ups in Kroger this holiday season.  Bloomberg
  • Amazon debuts private-label cleaning line.  CNN

Social Media + Marketing:

  • Facebook sees Stories as the future; ads will follow.  AdAge
  • Goop brings its holiday list to life with new gifting concept store.  Fast Company
  • Snapchat partners with ComScore to add limited measurement tool for Snapchat Discover.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Designing people’s Instagram stories is now a million dollar business.  Fast Company
  • Amazon and Google pursue shopper marketing budgets.  Digiday
  • P&G’s CMO on how to combat the direct-to-consumer threat.  AdAge
  • Target changes up its holiday ad strategy.  AdAge
  • CVS tests membership program.  CNBC
  • Macy’s to keep growing in-house influencer program.  Digiday

Start-ups + Acquisitions + Emerging Tech:

  • Men’s wellness company, Hims, launches Hers.  Fast Company
  • There’s a new crop of women’s wellness brands bringing women’s healthcare into the digital space.  Fashionista
  • Augmented reality takes root with brands, tech.  AdWeek
  • Walmart’s new store format to test technology opens in Dallas. TechCrunch

International:

  • Commercial excellence in China: lessons from the CPG industry.  McKinsey
  • Singles Day is the world’s biggest shopping day, but don’t expect to find it in the US.  AdWeek
  • Rural Indian market represented $12B ecommerce market.  LiveMint
  • Ikea to open first Mumbai store next year.  AdWeek
  • What Net-a-Porter’s Alibaba deal says about the luxury ecommerce opportunity in China. Business of Fashion
  • Amazon opens first pop-up store in Italy.  Women’s Wear Daily

Weekly Industry Brief: 10.23.2018

Happy Tuesday! Here’s a recap of industry news from the last week plus one day 🙂  Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brands and Retailers

  • Walmart’s marketplace items get free 2-day shipping, in-store returns.  TechCrunch
  • How Everyone plans to rid its supply chain of virgin plastic.  Fashionista
  • According to survey, Vans is the breakout brand for teens.  Quartz
  • Amazon Business Prime adds same-day and 1-day shipping among other benefits.  TechCrunch
  • Warby Parker is coming to a suburban mall near you.  Bloomberg
  • A look inside the convenience store of the future.  Bloomberg
  • Hasbro’s holiday cheer may be delayed by Toys ‘R’ Us bankruptcy.  The Wall Street Journal
  • eBay launches instant selling, a new trade-in service for smartphones.  TechCrunch
  • Amazon revisits some cities as H2Q decision looms.  The Wall Street Joural
  • Rent-the-Runway is teaming up with WeWork to boost subscription services.  Glossy
  • Jimmy Choo co-founder is reimagining the shoe industry with her namesake line, Tamara Mellon.  CNBC
  • Starbucks opens it first U.S. sign language store.  AdAge
  • P&G reports best quarter in five years.  USA Today

Marketing and Social Media

  • Instagram inches ahead of Snapchat in popularity among teens.  CNBC
  • L’oreal CMO says that companies that just sell products will not be successful.  MarketingWeek
  • Tommy Hilfiger combines content and commerce in Messenger.  AdWeek
  • Inside the $2.6B subscription box wars.  Fast Company
  • Oculus co-founder departs Facebook.  AdWeek
  • Crate & Barrel teams up with Zola hoping to win over Millennial couples.  AdWeek

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Uber ambitiously eyes 2021 for food-delivery drones launch.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Former Go-Pro exec launches clothing startup that does away with sizes.  TechCrunch
  • Lufstansa and IBM think AI can convince you to use your vacation days.  Fast Company
  • General Motors expands its peer-to-peer ride-sharing service to 10 cities.  Fast Company
  • China is the world’s retail laboratory.  Bloomberg
  • Tastemade raises $35M in funding from investors including Amazon.  Variety
  • Amazon, Walmart and others are using AI and robotics to transform everything from appliance shopping to grocery delivery.  The Wall Street Journal

International

  • Alibaba looks to take this year’s $25B mega sales event international.  CNBC
  • Hermes launches its first-ever Chinese ecommerce site. Jing Daily 
  • The multi billion-dollar modest fashion industry that’s gone global.  Vogue
  • China’s JD.com unwraps FedEx-style parcel business to bolster sales.  Reuters
  • China’s JD will launch flagship U.S. store on Google this year.  Bloomberg
  • Starbucks is brewing up massive growth in China.  Fortune

Weekly Industry Brief: 9.24.2018

Hi! I’m back. Happy new season!Here is a recap of news from the last two weeks. Seriously considering an Amazon-only news recap day…thoughts? Meantime, sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brands and Retailers

  • Amazon Prime Day: what the real lessons are.  McKinsey
  • Michael Kors is close to buying Versace for $2B.  Bloomberg
  • Amazon may open 3,000 cashier-less stores by 2021.  AdAge
  • A look inside Target’s store of the future.  AdWeek
  • Walmart is borrowing luxury’s playbook to gain an edge on Amazon in fashion.  Quartz
  • Amazon will sell and deliver live Christmas trees this year.  CNN Money
  • Gap’s new menswear line is a direct challenge to Lululemon.  Fortune
  • Ikea quickly shifting to a zero-emissions delivery fleet.  Fast Company
  • Halloween spending to hit $9B.  Retail Dive
  • How Nike became the biggest fashion brand in the world.  GQ
  • Walmart wants to bring its everyday low prices to healthcare.  CNN Money
  • J.Crew quietly launched a new platform that takes a page out of Amazon’s playbook.  Business Insider
  • Amazon introduces an Alexa-powered microwave and other home products.  The New York Times 
  • Crate & Barrel CEO says tariffs won’t send production to U.S. Bloomberg
  • Farfetch tops price range in IPO boon to luxury market.  Reuters
  • Why L Brands is shuttering all its Henri Bendel stores.  Forbes
  • Amazon investigates employees leaking data for bribes.  The Wall Street Journal 
  • Zara’s upbeat outlook eases concerns about online competition.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Coke may be planning cannabis drinks.  Fast Company 
  • Walmart’s Jet.com to offer Nike products in bid for urban consumers.  Reuters
  • Starbucks to build 10,000 “greener” stores by 2025.  CNBC
  • Target launches kitchen line with Chrissy Teigen.  Biz Journals

Marketing and Social Media

  • Why Weight Watchers is shedding the baggage of an old name.  AdWeek
  • Google following Instagram and Facebook with push into Stories format.  Recode
  • Amazon launches “storefronts” to promote small businesses.  Fast Company 
  • Amazon forecast to be No. 3 digital advertising player in 2018.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Here’s everything Google announced today at its “Future of Search” event.  TechCrunch
  • How Nordstrom reinvented its loyalty program.  Glossy
  • FabFitFun expands its video reach with new experiment in live programming.  TechCrunch
  • Pinterest launches API that lets brans find and track influencers.  VentureBeat
  • Snapchat lets you take a photo of object to buy it on Amazon.  TechCrunch
  • Eva Chen explains Instagram’s new shopping features.  Vogue
  • What the rise of men’s makeup means for masculinity.  Vox
  • Pinterest introduces a few product tagging tool for organic pins.  Marketing Land
  • L’oreal doing background checks as part of new influencer vetting process.  The Drum
  • TripAdvisor wants to become your Facebook for travel.  Fast Company 
  • Time Magazine sold to Salesforce founder for $190M.  The Wall Street Journal

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Here’s why SeriusXM is purchasing Pandora for $3.5B.  AdAge
  • Meet the nine companies in Snapchat’s new startup accelerator.  TechCrunch
  • Six AI innovations that could change skincare and beauty.  Dazed
  • For major beauty companies, brand incubation is the way of the future.  Fashionista
  • Slack acquires Astro to conquer email.  TechCrunch
  • Here’s why Adobe dished out $4.75B for Marketo.  AdAge
  • Google might release a Home Hub to take on the Echo Show.  The Verge 
  • How AI can help stop cyberattacks.  The Wall Street Journal 

International

 

Weekly Industry Brief: 9.10.2018

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

Brands and Retailers

  • J.Crew to sell its factory products, J.Crew Mercantile, on Amazon.  AdWeek 
  • Walmart was asked by several outdoor product brands to remove items from its website.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Urban Outfitters launches its own beauty brand.  InStyle
  • How Nike and REI made experiential retail a strategy.  Retail Dive
  • Glossier CEO on why the company won’t sell on Amazon.  TechCrunch
  • Inditex to sell all its brands online by 2020.  Reuters
  • How Adidas and Carbon are changing the sneaker supply chain.  TechCrunch
  • Jeff Bezos on what he plans to conquer next.  Forbes
  • AllBirds is opening a massive store in New York and plans more across the US.  CNBC
  • Amazon ordered 20,000 Mercedes-Benz vans to start a delivery service.  Fortune
  • The mystery of Amazon’s HQ2 has finalists seeing clues everywhere.  The New York Times 

Marketing and Social Media

  • Snap loses its chief strategy officer.  Fast Company
  • Colin Kaepernick campaign gives Nike a big sales boost.  Fortune
  • Snapchat eyes the fashion set with its latest line of Spectacles eyewear.  Fortune
  • WeWork wants to provide content marketing services to startups.  Digiday
  • A new Spotify initiative makes big record labels nervous.  The New York Times 
  • Amazon surpasses Google in product searches.  MediaPost
  • J.Crew’s relaunch campaign tries to win back lapsed customers.  AdAge
  • Instagram is reportedly building a standalone app for shopping. AdWeek
  • The menswear market is going all in on experiential retail.  Fashionista
  • Pinterest reports 25% increase in monthly active users.  TechCrunch
  • Instagram is testing the ability to tag friends in videos.  TechCrunch
  • Ulta highlights diversity in new campaign.  AdAge
  • Glamour magazine set to cease print operations.  Fashionista
  • Apple wins a Creative Arts Emmy for “Carpool Karaoke.”  Fast Company 

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • HP’s new 3-D printers built items not of plastic but of steel.  Wired
  • Deep-linking startup Branch is raising more than $100M at a unicorn valuation.  TechCrunch
  • Deloitte is buying a marketing AI platform to expand its ad-tech holdings.  AdWeek
  • Facial recognition tech is ready for its post-phone future.  Wired
  • Theranos is shutting down.  The New York Times 

International

  • Alibaba CEO Jack Ma will retire in a year.  Fast Company
  • Alibaba’s journey to become Asia’s most valuable firm.  Bloomberg 
  • Starbucks enters Italy with an opulent roastery.  Fortune 
  • Mulberry kicks off international expansion with show and pop-up shop in Seoul.  Vogue

Weekly Industry Brief: 9.4.2018

It’s that time: back to school, back to work, back to reality. And for my retail friends, this basically means the holidays are here, so….Happy Holidays!

Here is a recap of industry news from the last week.  Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.  Next week I’ll be back to Monday posting!

Brands and Retailers

  • Ulta shares hit 52-week high after announcing Kylie Cosmetics will be in stores by the holidays.  CNBC
  • Hard lessons breathe new life into retail stores.  The New York Times
  • Amazon strikes $1T market cap, four weeks after Apple did the same.  TechCrunch
  • Urban Outfitters gains as it launches a new vision for Anthropologie.  Forbes 
  • How haircare and skincare brands won Amazon Prime Day.  Glossy
  • Sales soar 27% at American Eagle’s Aerie.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Campbell Soup to sell international business and fresh unit.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Kroger expands Instacart home delivery to half its stores nationwide.  USA Today
  • The revamped Tiffany flagship will have more sales and VIP space.  Bloomberg
  • Inside J.Crew’s new CEO’s plans to revive struggling chain.  Fashionista
  • FAO Schwartz to return with store based on experience.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Walmart will have 30% more toys in stores this holiday.  CNBC
  • Target is already thinking of expanding Heyday, it’s first-ever consumer electronics brand.  Forbes

Marketing and Social Media

  • Can Instagram save offline shopping?  The Economist
  • Instagram is driving jewelry sales.  Retail Dive
  • Celine unveils a new logo.  Vogue
  • Tricky ads from a vitamin company that talks up openness.  The New York Times
  • Assessing the fallout – good and bad – from Nike’s Kaepernick ad.  AdAge
  • What happens when Facebook mistakenly blocks local news stories.  Wired
  • Inside Twitter’s long, slow struggle to police bad actors.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Sources say Instagram is building a standalone app for shopping.  The Verge
  • Kylie Jenner joins Adidas as latest brand ambassador.  Forbes
  • Can a festival help Zalando build a memorial brand? The Business of Fashion
  • New video ad gives brands a way to promote deals on Amazon.  AdAge 
  • Snapchat’s latest ecommerce play sells out again, this time with Adidas.  AdWeek

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Apple buys Denver startup building waveguide lenses for AR glasses.  TechCrunch
  • Dyson moves ahead on $2.6B electric car plan.  Bloomberg
  • Kroger to open innovation center at  University of Cincinnati.  Market Watch
  • The rise of giant consumer startups that said no to investor money.  Recode
  • Narvar raises $30M in new funding.  The Wall Street Journal
  • New Balance turns to AI.  Fast Company
  • How apparel store are innovating.  AdWeek

International

  • Inside Alibaba’s new kind of superstar: robots, apps and overhead conveyor belts.  CNBC
  • Tommy Hilfiger’s pivot to Asia.  The Business of Fashion
  • The booming male KOL market on Little Red Book.  Jing Daily
  • Alipay: Alibaba’s $150B moat.  Seeking Alpha
  • Amazon launches a Hindi language version of its site and app.  Fast Company

Weekly Industry Brief: 8.28.2018

Happy Tuesday. Here is your weekly industry brief – a day late per vacay!  As always, sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brands and Retailers

  • Why Target’s private label brands are so essential to its comeback. Fortune
  • How analytics and digital will drive next-generation retail merchandising.  McKinsey
  • How Kendra Scott became a $1B business built on direct retail.  Glossy
  • The Row is launching menswear.  Fashionista
  • Nature Valley drops ‘100% Natural’ claim.  AdAge
  • Gap brand remains a drag on namesake company.  Forbes
  • Walmart shoppers won’t have to hang their own TVs anymore.  AdAge
  • Walmart takes another jab at Amazon as it begins selling ebooks for the first time.  USA Today
  • Videogame developers are making it harder to stop playing.  The Wall Street Journal 
  • L.L. Bean donating $3M to National Parks Foundation.  Seattle Times
  • Walmart adds Moosejaw to its website.  CNBC
  • Nordstrom is using Los Angeles as testing ground for new retail strategies.  Glossy
  • Bose takes on HomePod with a $400 Alexa smart speaker.  TechCrunch
  • Ipsy’s new subscription delivers full-size beauty products, not samples.  TechCrunch

Marketing and Social Media

  • How direct-to-consumer brans are using social to scale.  Marketing Week
  • Instagram and Tinder go back to school with features just for college kids.  CNN Money
  • People spent 85B hours in WhatsApp in the past three months versus 31B in Facebook.  Forbes
  • The NYC Library is now posting books to Instagram.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Can P&G literally trademark “LOL”? AdWeek
  • Influencer Marketing sector reacts to Instagram’s new ‘about this account’ feature.  AdWeek
  • Facebook hires HP’s Antonio Lucio as new CMO.  AdAge
  • Amazon on the prowl for movies from Sony, Paramount.  AdAge
  • Giphy is launching its own take on stories with curated GIFs throughout the day.  The Verge
  • When digital platforms become censors.  The Wall Street Journal
  • How Nordstrom tapped into a century’s worth of customer data.  Venture Beat
  • Disney’s streaming service doesn’t have a name but it does have a strategy.  The Verge
  • Buzzfeed quietly tests a membership program.  Digiday
  • YouTube will now tell you how much of your life you spend watching videos.  Mashable

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • AR tops list of future retail shopping experiences. Retail Dive
  • Boxed raises $111M to take on Costco in bulk shopping.  TechCrunch
  • The most innovative retail concepts are being tested now.  Forbes
  • Welcome to checkout-free retail.  Wired
  • Fast-fashion brands are launching visual search to gain a competitive edge.  Glossy
  • Facebook has committed to using 100% renewable power for global operations by 2020.  TechCrunch
  • Toyota invests $500M into Uber.  TechCrunch

International

  • Alibaba shows resilience and posts blowout revenue growth of 61% YoY.  Forbes
  • Walmart closes 77% stake in India’s Flipkart. Barrons
  • The 10 best WeChat marketing campaigns for Chinese Valentine’s Day.  Jing Daily
  • Google partners with Indian banks to provide online loans.  Fast Company