Tipsheet: Uber Poaches Target CMO | Gap DC Burns | ‘Rockstar Response’ @ Neb.Furn.Mart | Petco’s Tech Invest


Uber Poaches Target CMO Jeff Jones by Adam Lashinsky & Phil Wahba at Fortune. “Jones starts Sept. 19 at Uber, where he will head worldwide marketing and operations. He replaces board member and early employee Ryan Graves in those roles, though Graves remains in a senior capacity at Uber.” Read more


…Jones met (Founder Travis) Kalanick at the TED 2016 conference in Vancouver, where the pair started talking about how Uber could improve its reputation by Kavita Kumar at Star Tribune. Read more


2,000 Cram into Nebraska Furniture Mart to meet ‘Fixer Upper’ stars Chip and Joanna Gaines by Maria Halkias at Dallas Morning News. “The couple seemed surprised by the rockstar response and standing room only audience who came to witness the couple’s personalities up close and find out what’s next. The next big thing is a restaurant…And someone in the audience shouted out a suggested name: “Fixer Supper”.” Read more


Gap employees miraculously escape fire at distribution center by Yaron Steinbuch at NY Post. “We were just hoping no one was hurt. No one could survive that if they were still inside,” Torrisi told the paper. “It looks like the whole roof is gone.” “We just saw this bright orange glow,” Fox said.” Read more


Sears to Start Selling Paint Again “…bringing trusted brands including Craftsman, Weatherbeater and Easy Living…Sears will be reintroducing paint in 23 stores across the country before rolling the offering out to all of its retail locations.” Press release


Petco invests in tech startup by Mike Freeman at San Diego Union Tribune. “Petnet, a maker of personalized feeding technology for dogs and cats, has raised $10 million in an initial round of venture capital led by San Diego’s Petco.” Read more


Alimentation Couche-Tard first-quarter profit rises 9% by Damon Van Der Linde at Financial Post. “The result in the first quarter of fiscal 2017 was mixed: revenues took a hit due in part to lower fuel prices, while U.S. fuel retail margins were largely responsible for the company’s higher-than-expected earnings per share.” Read more


Toys R Us Canada promotes Chief Merchant to President by Matt Linder at Internet Retailer. “Melanie Teed-Murch…has been with the retail chain for 20 years. In her new role she will be responsible for the retail chain’s online arm and Canadian stores.” Read more


**A message from 2016 Sweets & Snacks Expo – The Most Innovative New Products winners have been announced! Winners were awarded in nine categories: chocolate, non-chocolate, sweet, salty, savory, novelty, seasonal, gourmet/premium and gum/mints. See the winners here. The 2017 Sweets & Snacks Expo is nearly 90% sold out and will take place May 23-25 at Chicago’s McCormick Place – Notify me when registration opens


Wealthy consumers don’t like to pick up online orders in stores by Stefany Zaroban at Internet Retailer. “Of consumers across all income demographics, 57% said they had picked up an online order in a store in the last year. However, of those with household income above $200,000 per year, that number drops to only 36%.” Read more


Bloomberg: Will Amazon Kill FedEx? by Devin Leonard. Read more


Abercrombie Closing up to 60 Stores After Posting Wider Loss by Anne D’Innocenzio & Joseph Pisani at AP via ABC. “The retailer is changing its marketing to play down its sexy image, and last year got rid of provocative pictures on its shopping bags and bare-chested male models greeting customers at the door.” Read more


DSW Q2 Comp Sales -1.2% “…compared to last year’s increase of 1.8%.” Press release


Lowe’s Introduces LoweBot in the Bay area “This fall, Lowe’s will introduce LoweBot, a NAVii™ autonomous retail service robot by Fellow Robots, in 11 Lowe’s stores throughout the San Francisco Bay area. Following a successful robotics test of OSHbot at one of the company’s Orchard Supply Hardware stores.” Press release


Fred’s Q2 Comp Sales -2.0% Press release


Amazon to launch retail pickup location at UW-Madison this fall by Melanie Lawder at Milwaukee Business Journal. Read more


Cargill, General Mills, Wal-Mart collaborating to improve farm soil, water quality by Tom Meersman at Star Tribune. “The idea evolved from a meeting of CEOs that Wal-Mart held two years ago at its Arkansas headquarters. The topic: how the companies could help support agriculture in the Midwest…” Read more


Shopping Malls’ New Product: Fun by Esther Fung at Wall Street Journal. “Food and entertainment currently account for 22.1% of the space leased in malls, compared with 19.2% in 2012, according to data from CoStar Group Inc. This year, Pyramid has 49 entertainment tenants which account for 9.6% of leasable area in its portfolio, up from 16 tenants and 4.3% of its portfolio in 2010.” Read more (subscription)


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Most popular retailers for back-to-school among influencers: Walmart #1, Target #2, Staples #3, Amazon #4

The 10 Retailers With the Most E-Commerce Distribution Centers

Google is taking dozens of Nest engineers to work on the smart home

Generation Z Will Out-Earn and Outwork the Rest of Us

N.J. Governor Christie Vetoes Minimum Wage Hike to $15/Hr

Fortune: Women Bring More Tech Expertise to the Boardroom Than Men Do

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Tipsheet: Cramer Slams D.Store Stocks | Screaming Girls @ Macy’s | Lowe’s Accuses Woolworths | Cabela’s Sells Guns Online


Amazon’s plan to fight counterfeiters will cost legit sellers a ton by Ari Levy at CNBC. “Online stores that want to sell brands like Nike, Adidas and Hasbro are being told they have to pay a one-time nonrefundable fee of up to $1,500 per brand, according to interviews with multiple sellers. That’s after being asked to provide invoices from manufacturers or distributors that show the purchase of 30 items within the last 90 days.” Read more


Wal-Mart’s McMillon Tops Compensation List of 100 Arkansas Public Company Execs by Gwen Moritz at Arkansas Business. “McMillon and Foran, No. 4 this year, are among six current Wal-Mart executives ranked among the 10 highest-paid executives on this week’s list…Others in the top 10 are three executive vice presidents at Wal-Mart: No. 5 Neil M. Ashe, No. 6 David Cheesewright and No. 10 Rosalind G. Brewer.” Read more


LOWE’S ACCUSES WOOLWORTHS OF “OPPRESSIVE CONDUCT” AND ACTING IN “BAD FAITH” by Sarah Danckert at Sydney Morning Herald. “Lowe’s application sparked speculation it could throw a spanner in the works of Woolworths’ three deals totaling $1.5 billion to sell off parts of the Masters business to other groups.” Read more


Abercrombie & Fitch sales fall for 14th straight quarter at Reuters. “The retailer’s comparable sales at stores open at least a year fell a slightly steeper-than-expected 4 percent in the second quarter ended July 30.” Read more


Kroger could be looking to snap up Walgreens, Rite Aid stores by Steve Watkins at Cincinnati Business Courier. “Kroger is a potential buyer of some of the 500 stores that will likely be put up for sale, according to a Bloomberg report.” Read more


Cabela’s offers in-store pickup for guns bought online by Matt Brusveen at Internet Retailer. “Cabela’s Inc. on Monday became the largest online retailer to sell guns online…Customers can have the order shipped to a Cabela’s store where they can pick it up for free after going through the proper screening process. Previously, consumers could purchase ammunition online as long as it complied with the laws of the state to which it was being shipped, but could only purchase firearms in a store.” Read more


J.Crew Lines Up a New Partner With Nordstrom by Phil Wahba at Fortune. “The struggling apparel chain, which has been grappling with big sales drops after higher prices and fashion misreads angered many in its legions of shoppers, will start selling women’s clothes at 16 of the upscale department store’s locations beginning Sept. 12. Nordstrom already sells J.Crew Group’s Madewell brand at 76 stores and online.” Read more


Walgreens to partner with pharmacy benefit manager Prime Therapeutics at Reuters. “Prime Therapeutics, the fourth-largest U.S. PBM, is owned by 14 leading Blue Cross and Blue Shield health plans.” Read more


**A message from Black Flag® – We take no prisoners. In the battle against indoor and outdoor pests, it’s every man for himself. Arm yourself with Black Flag insect and rodent controls. Our tough, no-nonsense formulas are packed with a powerful punch to make short work of home insect invaders. Whether you’re battling crawling, flying or stinging insects or fending off mice, when the flag flies, pests die. Let it Fly. See our new ‘Sarge’ videos | Facebook page


Couche-Tard buys 53 sites in Louisiana Press Press release


CRAMER DOWN ON DOLLAR STORE STOCKS: “The wholesale wrongness of the dollar store stocks going into this quarter is one of the greatest mispricings I have seen in ages.” at CNBC. Read more


Belk headquarters listed for $80 million by Ashley Fahey at Charlotte Business Journal. “The retailer said earlier this year that it would be consolidating its headquarters operations at 2801 West Tyvola.” Read more


QVC Announces First West Coast DC “The 1 million square foot facility is expected to bring approximately 500 new jobs to Ontario (CA) by 2018 and an additional 500 jobs by 2020.” Press release


Macy’s Presents Fashion’s Front Row Ready to Kick Off New York Fashion Week “…to air nationwide on E! Thursday, September 15 at 8 p.m. ET/PT.” Press release


The ‘Once-Upon-A-Time’ Strategy: Retailers Bet On Storytelling To Bypass Digital Clutter by Barbara Thau at Forbes. “Marketing Insider Group conducted a study to investigate this strategy. Some 100 creative writers invented stories about $129 worth of items, then listed them on eBay to see if the tales upped the value of the objects for sale. The test yielded a net profit of $3.6 million. One $1.49 paperweight later sold for $197.50.” Read more


Miami – Hundreds of screaming teen-age girls gather at entrance near Macy’s to see Latin boy band by Adriana Correa at NBC 6 Miami. “Lucky fans who made a purchase of $35 or more in the Macy’s Juniors Department received a free copy of CNCO’s first album and a speed pass to meet and take pictures with the guys.” See the pics / Read more


Ex-Home Depot CIO Learned Well Before Moving Into Healthcare by Sandy Smith at Philly Mag. “Chopra’s first exposure to this new world came at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. “The information technology people were out of sight, but electronic records changed that,” he said. “Technology became a tool to improve patient care.” Read more


U.S. ON TRACK TO POST LONGEST STRETCH OF FALLING FOOD PRICES IN 50+ YEARS: Food Price Deflation Cheers Consumers, Hurts Farmers, Grocers and Restaurants by Heather Haddon & Julie Jargon at Wall Street Journal. “The glut is so severe in some places that dairy farmers have been dumping millions of pounds of excess milk onto fields. The U.S. Department of Agriculture just bought $20 million worth of cheese in response to hard-hit dairy farmers’ requests.” Read more (subs.)


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Navy veteran says Kroger pharmacy pill mix-up caused his kidney failure

Texas: Liquor stores get more ammunition against Walmart in booze fight

Bloomberg: Parisian Luggage Maker for the Truly Rich Seduces Luxury Giants

Retailer plans big metro Atlanta distribution center, 320 jobs

Apple’s Retail Stores Are Undergoing a Dramatic Makeover

The Google X moonshot factory is struggling to get products out the door

Five Below to open its 500th store next week

Barron’s: J.C. Penney CEO Buys Stock, Loses Money

Publix donates food to high school students in need

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Tipsheet: JD Power #1 Pharmacy = Sam’s/Publix | Costco Olive Oil Switch | New Listeria Recall | Pirate Joe’s Pursued


J.D. Power 2016 U.S. Pharmacy Rankings Mass Merchandiser: Sam’s #1, Costco #2, Target #3 See rankings for Supermarkets and Drug stores


Costco shifts again on sourcing olive oil by Janet I. Tu at Seattle Times. “The Greek oil did OK — I myself preferred it in a blind tasting — but it was not quite as strong a seller,” Olive Oil Times quotes Chad Sokol, commodity and dry grocery buyer for Costco’s Northern California and Nevada stores, as saying. “And pulling our buy out of Italy was significant. Their pricing came down as a reaction…” Read more


Start-ups in Target’s Techstars accelerator race to finish line by Kavita Kumar at Star Tribune. “These final weeks will be “hopefully controlled chaos,” said Ryan Broshar, managing director of the Target + Techstars program. The companies will be furiously fundraising, signing up clients and hashing out final details of their plans. “It will be super intense.” Read more


Trader Joe’s lawsuit over Canadian store Pirate Joe’s can proceed via LA Times. “The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a district court’s decision to dismiss California-based Trader Joe’s federal trademark claims.” Read more


Obama Finds an Ally in Wal-Mart, Whose Stores He Once Shunned by Toluse Olorunnipa & Shannon Pettypiece at Bloomberg. “As a freshman senator with his eye on the presidency, Barack Obama said he’d never shop at a Wal-Mart…Today, Wal-Mart is one of Obama’s most reliable corporate allies, a go-to partner that’s backed the White House on more than a dozen business initiatives, particularly Obamacare and climate change…” Read more


Washington Post: Why are sales suffering at so many women’s stores? They made bad clothes. by Sarah Halzack. “…They’re now trumpeting their turnaround plans, vowing to once again nail their fits, fabrics and styles. And some say those efforts are beginning to work. But if you’re a woman who suddenly finds that the mall resembles a wardrobe wilderness, accept this consolation: It’s not you. It’s them.” Read more


**A message from Fabe – Pillows hand-crafted in Italy prevent and relieve neck and back pain. Fabe’s Ergo Praxis pillow supports and aligns the head and neck to prevent cervical pain. Created in cooperation with Ludes University in Switzerland – it gets the body in the right position for a good night’s sleep. 100% Made in Italy. Ergo Praxis Specs | Fabe Website | Retailers request samples at Italy-America Product Connection


Listeria Sparks Recall of Pre-Cut Vegetables at Walmart and Publix by Michael Addady at Fortune. “Another Listeria recall is underway, this time in connection to pre-cut vegetables distributed by Texas company Country Fresh LLC. Listeria was discovered during a routine sample test at a retailer by the Georgia Department of Agriculture.” Read more


Wayfair Names Doran Robinson Vice President of Operations Product Innovation Team Press release


More Patti LaBelle desserts coming to Walmart by Aaron Smith at CNN Money. “LaBelle fans may want to brace themselves for a bit of sticker shock, though. While the sweet potato pie costs $3.98, the cobblers are $6.98, the apple pecan cake costs $9.98.” Read more


Top 10 Apparel E-Retailers in the World (Macy’s #3, Nordstrom #6) at Internet Retailer. See the list


Amazon Tests 30-Hour Work Week by David Z. Morris at Fortune. “The stated goal of the program is “to create a work environment that is tailored to a reduced schedule and still fosters success and career growth.” Read more


The Frozen Concentrated Orange-Juice Market Has Virtually Disappeared by Julie Wernau at Wall Street Journal. “The number of futures contracts held by traders has dropped by more than two-thirds from a 1997 high of 48,921, to 15,410 contracts last week. There were 71 players in the futures market as of last week, compared with 168 in 2004.” Read more (subscription)


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Outraged moms say Aldi’s new ‘sensitive’ baby wipes have brought their children out in rashes

Can Amazon reviews keep you from getting sick? Researchers try to predict food recalls

FitBit shows off sequels to the Charge and Flex, updates Blaze and Alta software

Big Tobacco Wants to Turn Japan’s Smokers Into Vapers

For Sale: Hand Signed Business Card Of Craig Jelinek

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Tipsheet: Big Lots +0.3% | Rodeo Drive Store +$122M | Wmart Safety Chief Speaks | QuikTrip Heroes


Big Lots Posts Revenue Decline But Raises Forecast via Fox Business. “Sales at stores open at least 15 months increased 0.3%, on the low end of the company’s projected range of between flat and 2%. Revenue fell as the comparable store increase was offset by a smaller number of stores.” Read more


Amazon plans to open a Chicago bookstore in Lakeview by Lauren Zumbach at Chicago Tribune. “(Amazon spokeswoman) Bass said the store, targeted to open next year, will be at 3443 N. Southport Ave., the former location of the now-closed Mystic Celt bar and restaurant.” Read more


…Amazon to build three more bookstores in San Diego, Portland and Chicago at Financial Times via CNBC. Read more


Sephora’s new Michigan Avenue store (#400) features high-tech touches by Brigid Sweeney at Chicago Crain’s. “…will be the chain’s fourth so-called Beauty T.I.P Workshop in the country, named after Sephora’s “Teach, Inspire, Play” mantra…is the first location to use the company’s new digital makeover guide…The new web version features the same sketch of a face; artists add product details and application tips and then email the chart to the shopper.” Read more


How Walmart Won Back Shoppers From Dollar General by Phil Wahba at Fortune. “The price war with Walmart comes at a time so-called food deflation is already pinching all these chains’ sales and profit margins: Dollar General said prices for milk fell 8% and more than 50% for eggs during the quarter.” Read more


Forget About The Home Depot Rivalry: Lowe’s Needs To Hammer by Pam Goodfellow at Forbes. “While it appears that Home Depot might be gaining headway with (Millennials), Lowe’s faces a much larger deficit: -29.0%. Yes, you read that correctly. Over the past year, Millennials have been nearly 30% less likely to shop Lowe’s most often for home improvement compared to the general population.” Read more


Wal-Mart in 2008 Looked Into Authenticity of Cotton Sheets Supplied by Welspun India by Sarah Nassauer & Preetika Rana at Wall Street Journal. “In 2008, a Wal-Mart employee warned headquarters staff that the same supplier currently in question, Welspun India Ltd., might have been selling the world’s largest retailer fake Egyptian cotton bed sheets, according to former employees and documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.” Read more (subs.)


**A message from Black Flag® – We take no prisoners. In the battle against indoor and outdoor pests, it’s every man for himself. Arm yourself with Black Flag insect and rodent controls. Our tough, no-nonsense formulas are packed with a powerful punch to make short work of home insect invaders. Whether you’re battling crawling, flying or stinging insects or fending off mice, when the flag flies, pests die. Let it Fly. See our new ‘Sarge’ videos | Facebook page


Bijan store on Rodeo Drive sells for a record $122 million by Andrew Khouri at LA Times. “At $19,405 a square foot, the sale to (LVMH) tops the $13,217 a square foot Chanel paid late last year for a Rodeo building it was leasing. At the time, the Chanel deal was a record price on a square-foot basis for retail space in California.” Read more


Nordstrom unloads partial stake in e-commerce shoe company Sole Society by Coral Garnick at Puget Sound Business Journal. “This week, Nordstrom sold part of its stake in Sole Society, which originally started as a shoe membership site founded by HauteLook. Financial details of the sale to Camuto Group were not disclosed.” Read more


Amazon expands Prime Now options with pet-supply deliveries in the Seattle region by Kurt Schlosser at GeekWire. “Amazon announced Thursday that it would begin offering one-hour delivery of pet supplies in the Seattle area from All The Best Pet Care, a longtime chain with 12 locations in the region.” Read more


Advertisers take note of dads’ larger role in back-to-school shopping by Michelle Castillo at CNBC. “Fathers in particular were more likely to use mobile devices to shop for back-to school items. A little over four out of 10 dads said they planned to do at least a quarter of their shopping on mobile, compared to just 24 percent of moms. They also were more likely to make “impulsive” purchases.” Read more


Indian Company Admits ‘Error’ After Target Cuts Ties Over Egyptian-Cotton Dispute by Preetika Rana at Wall Street Journal. “Without any ambiguity the fault is on our side and so it is, let’s say, the error is from our side so I guess we have to take responsibility for it,” Mr. Mandawewala told investors, according to the transcript.” Read more (subs.)


Wal-Mart safety chief implores U.S. Apple audience to act by Tom Karst at The Packer. “(Frank) Yiannas, vice president of food safety and health for Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart, issued a five-point call to action to the audience of about 400 conference attendees. Calling on the industry to avoid complacency in food safety, he defined complacency as “over confidence and poor metrics.” Read more


New York: Red Apple rescues rival supermarket chain D’Agostino by Richard Morgan at NY Post. “John Catsimatidis’ Red Apple chain, which also owns the Gristedes stores, has set up a revolving credit facility for the cash-strapped D’Agostino operation, the company said on Thursday. Red Apple would also weigh a move to move D’Agostino into a joint venture.” Read more


Costco Auto Program Named Power 300 Company for Third Consecutive Year Press release


Canada Post strike looms by Sarah Niedoba at Canadian Business. “The Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) presented Canada Post with a 72-hour notice of job action on Thursday evening, hours ahead of a deadline to declare a strike mandate by midnight.” Read more


Teen employees at QuikTrip help save man who was choking at store at Tulsa World. “On Tuesday, Smith, a 56-year-old self-employed entrepreneur, returned to the store at 1946 S. Harvard Ave. to offer the employees similar recognition — and to say thank you. “I was very touched, thankful and quite frankly amazed at how quickly they responded and how fast they were able to help,” Smith said.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Bloomberg: Walmart needs to cut Asda loose

CIA, Amazon Training A.I. to Spy on Earth

Lowe’s kicks off $2.5M in renovations at Boys & Girls Clubs

Lucky’s Market gets ready to open its second South Florida store

Amazon launches new hub for car buyers — but isn’t selling them itself

San Diego Tribune: Nordstrom departs downtown after 31 years

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Tipsheet: D.Gen & D.Tree Miss | Target CFO: “Work To Do” | Michaels +0.7% | Sears -5.2% | Tiffany -8.0%


Dollar General Q2 Comp Sales +0.7% “Todd Vasos, Dollar General’s CEO: “Retail food deflation and a reduction in both SNAP participation rates and benefit levels, coupled with unseasonably mild spring weather, proved to be stronger than expected headwinds to our business.” Press release


Dollar Tree Q2 Comp Sales +1.2% “Bob Sasser, Chief Executive Officer: “Through what continues to be a challenging retail sales environment, we delivered gross margin improvement and managed expenses effectively to deliver earnings at the top end of our guidance range.” Press release


Dollar Tree & Dollar General sales miss estimates via CNBC. “Wal-Mart Stores’ move to double down on competition by reducing prices on key items such as food was also expected to hurt sales at Dollar General and rival Dollar Tree Inc in the quarter.” Read more


Target CFO gives Best Buy props on a good quarter by Kavita Kumar at Star Tribune. “We’re sitting here saying, ‘Gosh, our electronics assortment is not where it needs to be. We’re not seeing the innovation in the categories.'” (CFO Cathy Smith) said. “And then Best Buy — I’ll give this one to them. They had a good quarter…We still have some work to do.” Read more


Sports Authority customers can opt out of Dick’s Sporting Goods getting their personal info by Monica Mendoza at Denver Business Journal. “Customers would have to do so by Sept. 15, before the data is transferred.” Read more


Australia: Woolworths Salvages $380 Million in Home Improvement Exit by Angus Whitley at Bloomberg. “The owner of the Mitre 10 hardware chain in Australia, agreed to buy Woolworths’ Home Timber & Hardware Group for A$165 million…a consortium including Aurrum Group, Spotlight Group and Chemist Warehouse proposes to buy 82 Masters properties and development sites and turn them into large-scale retail centers.” Read more


**A message from Fabe – Pillows hand-crafted in Italy prevent and relieve neck and back pain. Fabe’s Ergo Praxis pillow supports and aligns the head and neck to prevent cervical pain. Created in cooperation with Ludes University in Switzerland – it gets the body in the right position for a good night’s sleep. 100% Made in Italy. Ergo Praxis Specs | Fabe Website | How our Pillows are Made | Retailers request samples at Italy-America New Product Connection


Best Buy bets on VR for the holidays with 500 stores demoing Oculus Rift by Darrell Etherington at TechCrunch. “Lest you think Best Buy is leaning entirely on Oculus to wow consumers with virtual goodies, the retailer is also going to be running demos of PlayStation VR in 200 locations, on a rotating basis among a number of stores. Sony’s PlayStation-based offering doesn’t come out until October.” Read more


Puerto Rico cannot enforce a Wal-Mart tax: U.S. appeals court at Reuters. “The 2015 tax legislation had raised to 6.5 percent from 2.0 percent the tax for on-island companies with more than $2.75 billion in revenues that buy goods from off-island “related parties.” Wal-Mart argued it was the only company that fit that description.” Read more


Williams-Sonoma Q2 Comp Brand Revenue +0.6% “Laura Alber, President and Chief Executive Officer: …the overall retail environment has softened and we are being impacted by a more cautious consumer. As a result, we have revised our outlook for the remainder of the year to reflect this change in trend.” Press release


Survey: Dick’s Sporting Goods had two of the top 10 ‘breakthrough ads’ during Olympics Press release / Top 10 ads


Houston: Local division president wraps up 44-year Kroger career by Mike D. Smith at Houston Chronicle. “If anyone needed to find Bill Breetz, chances were the personable but unassuming 6-foot-5-inch executive was walking the aisles of an area Kroger store in business attire with a Starbucks cup in hand, greeting and chatting up clerks, florists, checkers and shoppers…” Read more


Sears Canada announces rebranding – unveils new “clean and contemporary logo” by Sean Craig at Financial Post. “The new look, which evenly spaces the five obvious letters, S-E-A-R-S, before a punctuating red stencil of a maple leaf is, at first glance, perhaps a bit nondescript.” See the logo / Read more


Sears Q2 Comp Sales -5.2% via Fox Business. “Sears also said on Thursday it received interest for Sears Home Services business and the unit that houses the Kenmore appliance, Craftsman tools and DieHard vehicle battery brands from potential partners including retailers.” Read more


Tiffany Q2 Comp Sales -8.0% via Reuters. “Analysts on average were expecting a decline of 6.90 percent, according to research firm Consensus Metrix.” Read more


Wal-Mart’s South Africa Unit Profit Rises as Food Sales Grow by Liezell Hill at Bloomberg. “Massmart… said first-half profit rose 19 percent as increased food and liquor sales offset slower growth in its general merchandise and home-improvement businesses.” Read more


Michael’s Q2 Comp Sales +0.7% “CEO Chuck Rubin: “Although sales growth in the first half of fiscal 2016 was more challenging than we anticipated, we believe that we continue to gain market share.” Press release | New CFO named


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Is a Granola Bar “Natural” If There’s a Pesticide in It?

Walton Trust Sells $256 Million of Wal-Mart Shares After Rebound

Denver: Safeway, Albertsons launch delivery service, online ordering

J.C. Penney adds major appliance showrooms in Minnesota

China’s Zika Rules Raise Fears for U.S. Exporters (WSJ subs.)

Amazon Launched This Program for Donating Kindles and Tablets

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Tipsheet: Tome Sells 97K Shares | Wgreen #2 in Radio (#1 Photo Tech) | Schnucks Bans Solicitors | Saks First in Hawaii


Reporter hunts for Amazon’s drone testing site in Britain, but drones aren’t at home by Alan Boyle at GeekWire. “Based on clues from the BBC, plus interviews with local sources, Business Insider’s Sam Shead went out to farm fields southeast of Cambridge, near a place called Worsted Lodge. In one of the fields, he found two bases that were located at each end of the acreage, about 400 meters (a quarter-mile) apart.” Read more


Carol Tome Sells 97,610 Shares of The Home Depot Stock by Doug Wharley at The Cerbat Gem. “The stock was sold at an average price of $135.35, for a total value of $13,211,513.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now directly owns 644,831 shares in the company, valued at $87,277,875.” Read more | SEC filing


Saks Fifth Avenue to open first Hawaii store on Thursday by Tina Yuen at Pacific Business News. 29 pics


Best Buy turns to appliances when iPhones aren’t selling by Nick Halter at Minneapolis/St.Paul Business Journal. “As a percentage of total sales, appliances now account for 11 percent of Best Buy’s business, up from 4 percent in 2010.” Read more


Nordstrom expands its in-store boutiques as it tries to stay ‘current and relevant’ by Coral Garnick at Puget Sound Business Journal. “(SPACE boutiques) initially launched exclusively in the retailer’s flagship locations — Seattle, Chicago, Vancouver, B.C. and San Francisco…the four new locations will be in Nashville, Los Angeles and two stores in Toronto, opening between Aug. 24 and Oct. 21.” Read more


Giant Eagle investing $25M in robotics firm by Patty Tascarella at Pittsburgh Business Times. “Seegrid, the Pittsburgh-based robotics firm that develops automated industrial vehicles used by Whirlpool, Daimler and Jaguar Land Rover…” Read more


Hank Meijer Talks About Minding The Customer at The Shelby Report. “Meijer’s grandfather, Hendrik, who had been a barber for 20 years, opened that little grocery store in Greenville next to his barbershop…As the Great Depression was bottoming out, the bank wouldn’t even foreclose on it because it was basically worthless, Meijer said…Only chain grocers like Kroger and A&P were expanding then. Hendrik tried to get both of them to take over the location, and neither had any interest…” Read more


**A message from 2016 Sweets & Snacks Expo – The Most Innovative New Products winners have been announced! Winners were awarded in nine categories: chocolate, non-chocolate, sweet, salty, savory, novelty, seasonal, gourmet/premium and gum/mints. See the winners here. The 2017 Sweets & Snacks Expo is nearly 90% sold out and will take place May 23-25 at Chicago’s McCormick Place – Notify me when registration opens


Why Doug McMillon Is the First-Ever Walmart CEO to Star in a TV Commercial by Brian Sozzi at The Street. “The TV ads are mostly being run in Washington, D.C., and New York, two areas where Walmart for years has dealt with outcry from government officials and members of the public that the retailer pays workers too little and puts small businesses under with its low prices.” See the ad / Read more


Walgreens #2 in radio spot count – where is Home Depot? at Inside Radio. “(Home Depot) which wrapped an 18-week run as the No. 1 radio advertiser on August 7, plummets to No. 17 this week from No. 7 last week.” Top 10 radio advertisers


Marketing innovator to leave post at Hannaford supermarkets at Portland Press Herald. “Mary Wright, vice president of marketing and brand strategy for Hannaford supermarkets, is leaving the company…leaving in September to become vice president of New Leaf Community Markets. That company, which focuses on providing natural, sustainable foods, has seven stores and is based in Santa Cruz, California.” Read more


Schnucks bans solicitors including Girl Scouts, Salvation Army at stores by Lisa Brown at St.Louis Post Dispatch. “In May, the Teamsters filed unfair labor practice charges with the National Labor Relations Board, arguing that if others including the Girl Scouts and Salvation Army are allowed to stand in front of Schnucks stores, its union members should also be allowed. Schnucks’ spokesman Simon declined to comment on whether the union dispute is connected to the new policy banning solicitors.” Read more


Claim: Soda consumption falls 21% in Berkeley after sugar tax by Mike Esterl via MarketWatch. “Consumption of bottled water or tap water rose 63% in Berkeley during the period but a more modest 19% in San Francisco and Oakland, according to the study…The American Beverage Association…said the Berkeley study has flaws…Street surveys relying on people’s recollections are “inherently unreliable,” said Brad Williams.” Read more


Ex-North Face employee sells $5,750 tents by Brandon Ancil at CNBC. “We are known for making the strongest tents for their weight in the world,” Zemitis said, adding that “on the mountain, our goal is to always be the last tent standing in the storm.” Read more


Walgreens photo tech’s gesture moves mother of soldier killed in Afghanistan by Howard Altman at Tampa Bay Times. “It turns out the store’s overnight photo technician was so moved by the photos, showing a young soldier and a grave site, that he paid for them out of his own pocket. It cost $5.50, but to Allison it was a priceless gesture….” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Why Nutella and Nike Have Hong Kong Shoppers Lining Up For Hours

Best Buy CEO’s Horrible Stock Trade – What was Hubert Joly thinking?

Lowe’s Launches Online Video, ‘House Love’

Gov. Rick Scott confirms locally transmitted Zika virus case in Tampa

Canadians now spend more on taxes than on food, clothing and shelter combined

Why Best Buy’s Sales Bump Is Especially Bad News for Target

Cameras in the dressing room? Walmart reassures shaken shopper

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Tipsheet: Nationwide Pricing Glitch at Target | Citi’s Costco Stumble | B.Buy Beats | Wmart Dump Sheets?


TV STATION FINDS NATIONWIDE PRICING GLITCH AT TARGET – Baby aisle more expensive than Pharmacy by Jessica McMaster at 41 KSHB Kansas City. “The 41 Action News Investigators called Target’s corporate offices to find out why the store was charging two different prices for the same item.  Kristy Welker, a spokeswoman for Target, said it was the first time she heard of the issue…After several hours, she contacted the 41 Action News Investigators, saying a glitch was found in Target’s pricing system.” See the video / Read more


Best Buy Q2 Comp Sales +0.8% “This is on top of comparable sales growth of 3.8% last year. We saw continued positive momentum in our online sales – delivering a second straight quarter of nearly 24% growth.” Press release


…Fox Business: Best Buy Surprise Sends Shares Soaring “Total revenue slightly rose to $8.53 billion in the second quarter ended July 30, snapping a three-quarter streak of declines.” Read more


Citigroup Stumbles Anew With Errant E-Mails to Costco Customers by Jennifer Surane at Bloomberg. “Citigroup Inc. mistakenly sent e-mails to some active Costco Wholesale Corp. members telling them their wholesale club membership had lapsed and that their cards would be canceled, bringing a fresh headache to the new partnership.” Read more


Target CIO: Prioritizing Stores, Digital, Supply Chain and Hiring Engineers at A Bullseye View. “About 70% of our engineering staff was third-party contractors vs. 30% Target team members. We had far more contractors than we needed…In just a year’s time, we’ve completely flipped that ratio—so that now about 70% of our engineering staff is team members while 30% is made up of contractors. And going forward I’d like to see that ratio get up to 80:20.” Read more


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Wal-Mart Reviews Welspun Records After Target Pulls Sheets by K Oanh Ha & Rajhkumar K Shaaw at Bloomberg. “(Walmart) plans to hold further discussions with Welspun and “handle it appropriately” if any issues are discovered, according to spokeswoman Marilee McInnis. Wal-Mart is Welspun’s third-largest customer, behind Target.” Read more


Hollywood Target, still dormant, remains at the center of furious legal fight by David Zahniser at LA Times. “For a fleeting moment, it looked as if the long-stalled, partly built Target shopping center in Hollywood might finally be in the clear…The city’s lawyers now say that, in the wake of a new ruling Target will need to obtain permission from a Superior Court judge  to resume construction. Read more


Cramer: We’ve got retail all wrong — time to bury the ‘death of the mall’ story at CNBC. “Amazon’s $50 billion in domestic sales in the past year was an indicator to Cramer that there is market share for everyone, as the U.S. had $4.71 trillion in retail sales during the same time period. Brick-and-mortars, which once seemed like zombies, once again have a pulse.” Read more/See the video


Best Buy opens connected home display in Mall of America by Kavita Kumar at Star Tribune. “The project is reminiscent of the experimental store called “Open House” that Minneapolis-based Target Corp. opened in July 2015 in San Francisco.” Read more


Warby Parker’s First Standalone Austin Store to Open Aug. 27th by Will Anderson at Austin Business Journal. “Warby Parker also plans to open a second Austin location this fall at Domain Northside, part of Endeavor Real Estate Group’s new addition to the North Austin master-planned development.” Read more


Couche-Tard is now the largest fuel retailer on continent by Geoffrey Morgan at Financial Post. Read more


Loblaw makes $170-million cash bid for B.C. medical records company QHR Corp. by Sean Craig at Financial Post. “The country’s largest food retailer offered $3.10 cash per share of Kelowna’s QHR Corp. — or 22 per cent over the stock’s price on the TSX Venture Exchange at Friday’s close — saying it will be a “natural complement” to its Shoppers Drug Mart division.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Why it makes sense for supermarkets to refuse WIC checks

Online retailers give the boring brown box on your doorstep an extreme makeover

Judge orders $15 minimum wage vote in Minneapolis

Ramen noodles: The unexpected gold standard in prison currency

Here’s another sign that Virginia will be a combat zone for Publix

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Tipsheet: Target on Today Show | Lowe’s Shutters Express Store | Wmart Internship Close-Up | H.Depot Helps 2-Yr Old


Target Severs Ties With Vendor Over Egyptian-Cotton Dispute by Shannon Pettypiece at Bloomberg. “The retailer said it discovered last month that 750,000 sheets and pillowcases labeled as Egyptian cotton were actually made with another type of cotton. The retailer pulled the items from its stores, and on Friday it began notifying customers that it will give them a refund on the products.” Read more


…Welspun India shares fell 20 percent, the most in a decade at Bloomberg. Read more


Dick’s Sporting Goods Announces Acquisition Of Affinity Sports “Affinity Sports will provide key services to various youth sports National Governing Bodies and large-scale organizations under the DICK’S Team Sports HQ platform.” Press release


College campuses are the next big retail battleground for Target, Amazon and more by Kavita Kumar at Star Tribune. “…of the 32 smaller store formats Target will have opened by the end of this year, eight are near college campuses, including the University of California-Berkeley, Boston University, Penn State and the University of Chicago.” Read more


Canada’s Alimentation Couche-Tard to buy CST Brands for $3.67 billion at Reuters. “With this transaction we would strategically strengthen our positioning in both the “sun belt” and the east coast of North America,” Couche-Tard Chief Executive Brian Hannasch said in a statement.” Read more


Wal-Mart internships both a trial and tryout by Robbie Neiswanger at Arkansas Online. “Tess Plyler learned a valuable lesson during her 10-week internship with Wal-Mart Stores Inc. Don’t leave food in the refrigerator on Fridays. It won’t be there when you return. “I didn’t know they empty out the fridge,” said Plyler, who will be a senior at the University of Arkansas this year. “So I lost some Tupperware. But I’m OK. I’ve recovered.” Read more


Lowe’s has closed Lowe’s Express – its experimental store it opened a little over three years ago by David P. Willis at Asbury Park Press. “It was the first of its kind, Lowe’s said at the time. And it turned out to be the only one of its kind. The store closed on Sunday night and won’t reopen, a spokesman for Mooresville, North Carolina-based Lowe’s said.” Read more


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NY Post: Macy’s strikes gold with Bluemercury’s growth by Lisa Fickenscher. “Bluemercury just opened its 12th store in Manhattan, where it sees a market for as many as 40 stores. “We think there is room for a Blue Mercury every 15 blocks,” said Barry Beck, comparing Bluemercury to the ubiquitous Duane Reade.” Read more


Chapel Hill-based gourmet food giant sells for $3.5 million by Lauren K. Ohnesorge at Triangle Business Journal. “Calvert does not plan to make any immediate changes to the Chapel Hill location, according to the announcement. But stores in Raleigh, Asheville and Charleston will close, according to Calvert.” Read more


Amazon Will Now Deliver A Car To Your Doorstep by Kirsten Korosec at Fortune. “This limited campaign—it’ll only be held the last two weekends in August—will give Amazon Prime subscribers living in the Los Angeles and Orange County areas a chance to order a 45- to 60-minute test drive of a 2017 Hyundai Elantra.” Read more


Office Depot CEO to retire; company creates COO, North America at Reuters. Read more


Over the weekend: Today Show features team of kids behind Target’s new back-to-school ads “Claire Jantzen, the 17-year-old director, gives TODAY’s Stephanie Ruhle the scoop…” See the 3:14 video


The Full Transcript Of McDonald’s CEO Interview With Fortune by Beth Kowitt at Fortune. “Fortune got the inside scoop on McDonald’s transition to serving 100% cage-free eggs within the next decade for its September cover story. The tale of what it will take, and how it could change the broader food system…” Read the interview


Mysterious ‘Project X’ points to Amazon drive-up grocery store in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood by Nat Levy & Todd Bishop at GeekWire. “Permit filings uncovered by GeekWire show plans to renovate the former Louie’s Cuisine of China site, at 5100 15th Ave. N.W. in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood, into a 9,759-square-foot retail space where customers can pick up groceries that they’ve ordered online, in what the project team calls “a new model of grocery shopping.” Read more / See the building pic


Home Depot employees build custom walker for 2-year-old at Fox 4. “He started laughing and then started using his little feet to push himself backwards. I had a big smile. Everybody had a big smile, maybe a couple little tears here and there” For Jessica Johnson, the challenges of a special needs child can sometimes be overwhelming until something like this happens. “I’ve prayed for them that God could bless their families because they’ve definitely blessed ours,” said Johnson.” See the video / Read more


At Kimberly-Clark, ‘Dead Wood’ Workers Have Nowhere to Hide by Lauren Weber at Wall Street Journal. “One former employee said he was initially glad that the company was identifying those who weren’t pulling their weight. Then, after earning top reviews over his decadeslong career, he said he was given a low rating and placed on a performance-improvement plan after missing a project deadline. After that, “no one would talk to me” about other positions, he said.” Read more (subscription)


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Forbes: 2016 Best Companies For Developing C-Level Marketing Leaders

KFC just unveiled an absurd new product — fried-chicken scented sunscreen

Bloomingdale’s to host in-store fitness classes for annual fundraiser

Report: Lyft met with tech giants like Amazon about potential acquisition

No go for Wegmans first D.C. store

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