Weekly Industry Brief: 11.14.2016

Here is your industry news from the past two weeks! Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.


  • 5 rules for a retail town square: What Apple and Whole Foods can teach us. Link
  • IBM buys expert personal shopper from Fluid to build out Watson’s conversation skills. Link
  • American Apparel returns to bankruptcy with deal to sell brand. Link
  • Samsung to buy Harman to $8B in cashin bold auto gambit. Link
  • Superdry owner surges as label leaves retail rivals trailing. Link
  • What President Trump means for retailers. Link
  • Kohl’s introduces its own millennial-focused answer to fast fashion. Link
  • Kenneth Cole to shut down almost all its brick-and-mortar stores. Link
  • Estee Lauder to acquire Too Faced for $1.45B. Link
  • Amazon expands Home Services to 20 more cities. Link
  • Marks & Spencer to close 60 clothing and home stores. Link
  • eCommerce is growing but customers still prefer to shop in stores. Link
  • Amazon files lawsuit to keep counterfeit goods off site. Link
  • California style is back and making bank. Link
  • Fossil is closing stores. Link
  • Net-a-porter reveals Reformation collaboration. Link
  • Crew is discontinuing its bridal collection. Link
  • Lord & Taylor looks to modernize with renovations. Link
  • Primark steps up expansion in US. Link
  • Burberry profit down 40% as costs rise. Link
  • NastyGal petitions to file for bankruptcy. Link
  • Wal-Mart boosts online holiday inventory for Black Friday. Link


  • Instagram introduces shoppable product tags. Link
  • Pinterest is adding 15 ad tech companies to beef up its data and measurement game. Link
  • Inside Lululemon’s unconventional influencer network. Link
  • YouTube is helping to sell a lot of makeup. Link
  • What happens when big data meets high fashion. Link
  • H&M trades David Beckham for Weekend in push for younger shoppers. Link
  • Vogue launches Vogue Arabia, it’s first foray into the 22 countries of the Arab League. Link
  • Snapchat’s latest update reveals it grand strategy. Link
  • Crowd-sourced products sell better when they’re marketed that way. Link
  • CoverGirl adds Muslim beauty blogger as ambassador. Link
  • Gap harnesses optimism in holiday ads. Link
  • Snapchat delivers mysterious vending bot to sell its spectacles. Link

Startup/Emerging Tech

  • Beware, iPhone users: Fake retail apps are surging before holidays. Link
  • Fashion startup Farfetch said to plan IPO as soon as 2017. Link
  • Online startup Harry’s Razor jumps into Gillette’s turf. Link
  • Wayfair expands virtual reality universe with IdeaSpace. Link
  • Apple considers wearables expansion with digital glasses. Link


  • Alibaba doubles down on entertainment with $1.5B fund. Link
  • How Alibaba turned China’s Singles’ Day into the world’s biggest shopping bonanza. Link
  • Amazon plans to enter Southeast Asia with Singapore launch in Q1 2017. Link
  • Julep, Little Red Book partner on China launch. Link
  • Alibaba rival JD envisions its own delivery drone fleet by 2017. Link
  • Chinese shoppers’ share of global luxury purchases drops 30%. Link
  • Alabbar, Saudi PIF to set up $1B ecommerce firm. Link
  • Study: Chinese millennials spend big on shopping because they live with their parents. Link
  • American Apparel’s UK business goes into administration. Link
  • Alibaba shatters Singles’ Day records. Link

Weekly Industry Brief: 2.8.2016

Happy Monday! Check out a recap of news from around the web about retail, ecommerce, and technology. All sources can be found in the hyperlinked text after the headline.


  • Reports rise that Amazon planning massive brick-and-mortar presence but it may not be true. Link and Link
  • Yahoo plans to cut 15% of workforce, reports $4.5B writedown on Tumblr, Americas. Link
  • What any business can learn from Nordstrom customer service. Link
  • The woman who created Netflix’s enviable company culture and how she did it. Link
  • Nastygal to lay off 10% of staff. Link
  • How Shinola boosted online sales with a new take on customer service. Link
  • Burberry to slash number of catwalk shows, speed up sales. Link
  • Are teen retailers finally turning a corner? Link
  • Ralph Lauren had a bummer quarter in America. Link
  • Weak sales at Kohl’s, Ralph Lauren spark selloff in retailers. Link
  • Kate Spade founders talk new accessories brand, Frances Valentine. Link
  • Retailers need to shift focus as consumers crave less stuff. Link
  • Amazon added 17M square feet of distribution center space in 2015. Link
  • Target launches gender-neutral kids home line. Link
  • Ikea revamps restaurants as food business grows. Link
  • Yoox Net-a-Porter beat forecast with larger-than-expected 31% year over year growth. Link
  • Luxury brands can no longer ignore sustainability. Link
  • Michael Kors finds a lifeline online. Link

Marketing/Social Media

  • Get ready to be blitzed by Chiptole ads. Link
  • See all the ads from the Super Bowl. Link
  • Instagram launches account switching on iOS and Android. Link
  • Fashion industry scrambles to find the right use of Snapchat. Link
  • Instagram extends video ads to 60 seconds. Link
  • Affiliate marketing offers alternative to crowded content marketplace. Link
  • Refinery 29 debuts its first app. Link

Start Ups

  • Jessica Alba’s Honest Co. reportedly seeking IPO. Link
  • A bra company that uses an app to find the right fit raised $8M. Link
  • Fab co-founder sells second startup. Link
  • AirBnB handed over $1.3M in tourist taxes to Paris in Q4. Link
  • Upgrade your jewelry box with the female millennial entrepreneurs behind Gleem & Co. Link
  • Stubhub takes on Ticketmaster with new platform for both primary and secondary tickets. Link


  • Walmart brings click-and-collect to Toronto. Link
  • Chinese shoppers in South Korea shun luxury for local brands. Link
  • PayPal data shows 35% of Chinese ecommerce took place on overseas sites in 2015. Link
  • As its market grows, Nigerian ecommerce startup Africa Internet Group raises $83M. Link
  • Aeropostale to open shops in Thai department stores. Link
  • UK online retailer Finery to open in-store shops at six John Lewis stores. Link
  • American Apparel testing UPS service for international delivery. Link
  • How fashion is cashing in on Chinese New Year. Link
  • Australia’s Cotton On plans international expansion. Link

Emerging Tech/Mobile

  • Virtual reality: coming soon to a clothing retailer near you. Link
  • Under Armour CEO sees technology as company’s undeniable future. Link
  • Amazon’s artificial intelligence agent, Echo, can order you pizza an turn on Spotify. Link
  • Loreal’s latest beauty secret – it’s acting like a tech company. Link
  • Leading virtual reality company is building a cross-platform VR content network. Link