Industry Brief: 2.25.2020

Hi! Here is a quick round-up of some news from around the industry over the last few weeks. Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headlines.

Brands + Retailers

  • Victoria’s Secret to go private at $1.1B valuation.  The Wall Street Journal
  • As DTC brands move into wholesale, analytics platforms follow.  Vogue
  • How brands are battling knock-offs on Amazon.  AdWeek
  • Apple stores reopen in China despite coronavirus outbreak.  Fast Company
  • As Walmart grows in ecommerce, investors look for a plan to stem the losses.  CNBC
  • Nevermind the internet, here’s what’s killing malls. The New York Times
  • How Amazon is causing us to drown in trademarks.  The New York Times
  • Inside the fall of Softbank-backed Brandless.  Axios
  • Pier 1 declares bankruptcy.  CBS News
  • Bed Bath & Beyond to sell gift unit in Turnaround bid. Bloomberg
  • Amazon opens its first cashier-less grocery store.  TechCrunch
  • Target moves up among ecommerce players.  Forbes
  • Forever 21 will live on with new owners.  NPR

Marketing + Social

  • Amazon’s new web TV series merges content and commerce.  LA Times
  • Unilever will stop targeting kids in advertising. Digiday
  • Inside Glossier’s fight to trademark its iconic bubble wrap bags.  Fast Company
  • How brands are using TikTok to go after a new age group with huge spending power.  Inc
  • Facebook blocks device-level phone data.  AdAge
  • How Gen Z is using Instagram to shop.  Glossy
  • Inside RxBar’s new influencer strategy. Digiday
  • Beyond subway ads, how startups are investing in out of home.  Modern Retail
  • Instagram prototypes letting IGTV creators monetize with ads.  TechCrunch
  • Google ends its free Wifi program.  TechCrunch
  • Disney Plus has over 28M subscribers. The New York Times
  • Toy industry looks to YouTube talent for next generation of merchandise.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Is technology subsuming marketing? Harvard Business Review

Emerging Tech

  • New tool aims to track whether influencers and other digital ads actually drive online sales.  AdAge
  • Goodyear finds uses for AI and IoT in tires, tools.  Forbes
  • Salesforce buys Vlocity for over $1B.  TechCrunch
  • Apple is teaming up with Johnson & Johnson to see if the Apple Watch can reduce the risk of stroke.  Fast Company

Weekly Industry Brief: 9.9.2019

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

Brands + Retailers

  • Nordstrom lets you return online orders to Macy’s.  Bloomberg
  • As luxury brands exit 5th Avenue, activewear companies are swooping in with tech-focused stores.  Glossy
  • The luxury evolution of the museum gift shop.  Fashionista
  • With Aerie, Jenn Foyle has revolutionized the lingerie industry.  Fashionista
  • Amazon is testing a ‘new’ badge to help shoppers identify new products.  Fast Company
  • Starbucks is opening a pick-up-only store.  Fast Company
  • Walmart tests dentistry and mental care as it moves deeper into primary health.  CNBC
  • Target’s loyalty program is expanding nationwide in October with perks for all shoppers.  USA Today
  • Nintendo switches it up again with new fitness device.  Forbes

Marketing + Social Media

  • Facebook, Google targets of potential antitrust violations.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Google is fined $170M for violating children’s privacy on YouTube.  The New York Times
  • Facebook and Instagram are testing new shopping features.  AdWeek
  • To acquire customers more cheaply, DTC brands are partnering up.  Modern Retail
  • Facebook says it may remove Like counts, too.  TechCrunch
  • YouTube starts phasing out exact subscriber numbers.  Campaign Live
  • Google set to roll out first-price auctions.  AdWeek
  • The story of the Gila Disruptor II, the internet’s most divisive shoe.  Dazed
  • Brands, influencers join forces on TikTok.  eMarketer
  • How Amazon’s ad growth is threatening Google, Facebook, agencies and ad-tech.  Marketing Dive 
  • Coca-Cola’s Fanta shifting TV spend to digital, social.  Digiday
  • Popular YouTube toy reviewer who’s just a kid under scrutiny for ‘deceptive advertising.’ AdAge
  • Coffee, travel and skincare are among 12 industries millennials are boosting.  Fast Company
  • Underwear ads lose the macho: how marketing has embraced real men.  The New York Times
  • Spotify and Snapchat are rolling out an integration on iOS, Android.  AdWeek

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • These startups are tackling the most frustrating women’s health issues.  Fast Company
  • WeChat launches product that allows consumers to pay with facial recognition.  Pandaily
  • General Motors to launch new in-vehicle services with Google.  Telecompaper
  • How much is WeWork worth? Maybe half as much as people previously thought.  Fast Company
  • Shopify buys warehouse automation tech developer 6 River Systems for $450M.  TechCrunch


Weekly Industry Brief: 7.27.2015

Hello! Industry news from the last week.  Sources in the hyperlinked text after the headline. Have a great week!


  • Amazon Prime credit card will give you 5% cash back. Link
  • AirBnB launches new product to attract business travelers. Link
  • Apple profit up 38% but iPhone sales disappoint Wall Street. Link
  • Amazon spikes 14% after it reports surprise Q2 profit and better-than-expected revenue. Link
  • Etsy attracting more short sellers. Link
  • Moda Operandi’s co-founder is shutting down Tinker Tailor. Link
  • Rocket Internet says portfolio value is up 47% from IPO. Link
  • Everlane appoints former Gap creative director Rebekka Bay as head of product and design. Link
  • Comcast in talks with multiple new media firms. Link
  • Inside the fight for survival at Gap, J.Crew and Abercrombie. Link
  • Neiman Marcus partners with The RealReal to expand in-store consignment. Link
  • Macy’s to expand same-day delivery to new markets. Link
  • Stores like Bass Pro Shops and Restoration Hardware adding bars and restaurants to encourage lingering. Link
  • Dolce & Gabbana launches capsule collection on Net-a-porter. Link
  • Limited Too is back for millennial moms and their tweens. Link
  • Nordstrom launches personal shopping service for women under Trunk Club brand. Link
  • Amazon showrooming forces stores to go digital on price displays. Link
  • Converse wants chucks to feel like Nikes. Link
  • Inside Mercantile, J.Crew’s bet on cheaper clothes. Link
  • Tory Burch to launch Tory Sport. Link


  • The Gap forms partnerships with companies from Birch Box to Virgin Hotels to boost business. Link
  • YouTube offers a solution to the vertical video problem. Link
  • Meerkat will now let you live-stream video from GoPro. Link
  • Print Renaissance: independent fashion magazines in an increasingly digital world. Link
  • Forever 21 turns your Instagram photos into real-time, real life portraits. Link
  • Victoria’s Secret ranks first in social popularity. Link
  • Nordstrom goes big with rooftop Instagram installation to promote sale. Link
  • YouTube chief pushes ahead with subscriptions despite questions. Link
  • Twitter introduces event-based ad targeting. Link


  • eBay acquires San Francisco-based consignment, Twice. Link
  • uses clever tactic to save money. Link


  • Starbucks to launch mobile ordering in UK. Link
  • Taylor Swift to sell clothing on for Chinese shoppers. Link
  • How Burberry is building its Japan business. Link
  • F21 Red is coming to Canada. Link
  • eBay-backed Asian ecommerce company Giosis lands $82M in funding. Link
  • Facebook and other tech giants expand internet access in Africa. Link
  • From jewelry to hotels, Hong Kong business feel China’s pain. Link

Mobile/Emerging Tech:

  • New York Times will offer free articles on the Starbucks app starting next year. Link
  • Number of mobile retail websites using responsive design more than doubles since 2014. Link
  • Starbucks joins with Lyft on loyalty program in app. Link
  • Apple Watch to be sold at Best Buy. Link
  • Apple Music, iTunes and App Store suffer outages. Link

Weekly Industry Brief: 6.22.2015

Happy Monday! Check out industry news from the last week.  All sources can be found in the hyperlinked text after the headline.


  • Gap closing 175 North American stores. Link
  • Twitter gets more shoppable with product pages and collections. Link
  • AmazonFresh becomes a Prime benefit in select California markets. Link
  • FitBit’s first day on Wall Street. Link
  • Starbucks to shutter all La Boulange stores. Link
  • Etsy takes on Kickstarter with crowdfunding platform. Link
  • Why brick-and-mortar sales are key to Warby Parker’s growth. Link
  • How WalMart plans to catch Amazon: subscription services and grocery pick up. Link
  • How Gap can turn things around. Link
  • Apple gives in on music fees after Taylor Swift’s letter. Link
  • Yoox Nat-a-porter stake up for grabs as Milan fashion set meets. Link
  • Ralph Lauren climbs after making progress on restructuring plan. Link
  • How Stussy became a $50M global streetwear brand. Link
  • Office Depot investors ok Staples merger. Link
  • WalMart to return greeters to the front door. Link
  • Abercrombie names new creative director. Link
  • Wardrobe basics give Uniqlo’s sales a boost. Link
  • Rag & Bone eyeing global growth. Link


  • Twitter’s Project Lightening is an event hub that aims to expand the reach of Twitter. Link
  • YouTube launches YouTube Newswire, a channel featuring verified eyewitness videos. Link
  • Buzzfeed showcases its serious side with a news app and customizable alerts. Link
  • Roku is introducing personalized interactive video ads. Link
  • Twitter acquires Whetlab to better organize tweets. Link
  • Google aims to own online ad attribution, native ad serving. Link
  • Barney’s makes its Instagram shoppable. Link
  • Nike leads Instagram gains among fashion brands. Link
  • Twitter said to plan marketing campaign, ads for live events. Link
  • Nestle will be the first brand to run a sponsored Periscope stream. Link


  • The Instagram of news is here and its smarter than you think. Link
  • Dollar Shave Club is valued at $165M. Link
  • Google Ventures invests in Oxford University venture fund. Link


  • Google grows ecommerce business in Europe with Ingenico partnership. Link
  • Alibaba wants to build the Netflix of China. Link
  • Alipay’s US chief talks expansion, Uber China partnership. Link
  • Facial-recognition concerns keep Facebook ‘Moments’ from Europe. Link
  • China to promote cross-border ecommerce as incomes rise. Link
  • mCommerce takes off in China. Link

Mobile/Emerging Tech:

  • Amazon is developing an app that would pay people to drop off packages. Link
  • Starbucks to expand mobile-ordering service to 17 states. Link
  • Linkedin is testing two new apps, plus a messaging overhaul. Link
  • Apple Watch arrives in stores, finally. Link
  • Apple chooses iPhone colors to please Chinese customers. Link