Tipsheet: Albertsons Buy Price Chopper? | Bass Pro/Cabela’s Delay | Trump Hurts Tiffany | Adidas New Flagship


Cyber Monday set a U.S. e-commerce record with $3.45 billion in sales by Jason Del Rey at Recode. “…setting a record for the largest day in U.S. e-commerce history, according to Adobe. The record marks a 12 percent increase over the same day last year…the total was just 3 percent higher than that of Black Friday, as the two big days of discounts become indistinguishable from each other.” Read more


Albertsons in advanced talks to buy Price Chopper by Lauren Hirsch at Reuters via Fox Business. “…for around $1 billion, people familiar with the matter said on Tuesday…Price Chopper operates roughly 130 stores across the U.S. Northeast.” Read more


Claim: Amazon accounts for nearly 40% of holiday weekend web sales in the US by Allison Enright at Internet Retailer. “43% of shoppers say they will make more than half of their holiday purchases on Amazon, according to the results of an Astound Commerce study released this week.” Read more


SPEED BUMP – FTC review to delay Cabela’s-Bass Pro merger by Josh Kosman at NY Post. “The Federal Trade Commission has asked Bass Pro Shops for more information on its $5.5 billion acquisition of Cabela’s, a move that will hold up the Oct. 5 deal for what two sources close to the situation said could be a few months.” Read more


Patagonia’s Black Friday sales hit $10 million — and will donate it all by Parija Kavilanz at CNN. “The company said it was expected pull in about $2 million in sales at both its 80 global stores and but blew past its own estimate many times over.” Read more / Video


Kohl’s gets 60 million hits to site during Black Friday week by Melanie Lawder at Milwaukee Business Journal. Read more


Spectacle around Trump Tower hurts business at Tiffany & Co. by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “Swept up in the security ring and protest marches surrounding Trump Tower, customers now have to walk past barricades to enter through the store’s main entrance on Fifth Avenue. “We have seen an adverse affect on traffic at that store and we can’t assure that sales won’t be negatively affected going forward,” management said.” Read more


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Chicagoland: Target to open store in Oak Park high-rise next year by Lauren Zumbach at Chicago Tribune. “The 22,000-square-foot Target store will be part of the 20-story, 271-unit Elevate Oak Park luxury apartment development at the corner of Lake Street and Maple Avenue, Target said Tuesday.” Pics / Read more


Amazon device sales (Echo & Fire) were up more than 2X on Cyber Monday compared to last year by Taylor Soper at GeekWire. Read more


New UPS CIO Envisions ‘Autonomous Everything’ by Sara Castellanos at Wall Street Journal. “Vehicles that are capable of automatically making safe and informed decisions during inclement weather and traffic hazards, without human intervention, could usher in a new era of safety in the delivery of packages to customers, he said.” Read more (subscription)


Adidas will open a new flagship retail location on the outskirts of Times Square by Brian Heater at TechCrunch. “It’s the largest of German shoe giant’s stores – and the first in a string of upscale brick and mortar shops soon to include a sizable location opening up soon in London. The company is currently giving some private tours of the space, and it’s all pretty nuts – multiple stories, bleacher-style seating for watching sports events, a cold press juice bar. And lots and lots of shoes.” Read more


Amazon developing Alexa-powered touchscreen device for the home by Mark Gurman at Bloomberg. “The new device will have a touchscreen measuring about seven inches…according to two people familiar with the matter. This will make it easier to access content such as weather forecasts, calendar appointments, and news…They asked not to be identified speaking about a product that has yet to be announced. The latest Amazon speaker will be larger and tilt upwards so the screen can be seen when it sits on a counter and the user is standing.” Read more


Ex-President/COO of Ralph Lauren Joins TJX Board Press release


Driver of Walmart truck that crashed into Tracy Morgan’s limo pleads guilty at Daily Mail. “Under the terms of his plea, Roper, 37, from Jonesboro, Georgia, can avoid prison if he performs community service and satisfies other conditions over the next three years.” Read more


Ace Hardware Teams up with Product Launch Platform to Spark Innovation Press release


Retail technology promises to get her the perfect gift every time by Krystina Gustafson at CNBC. “Stores are optimized for shopping for yourself,” Erez said. “They are leaving money on the table.” Read more


Wal-Mart’s Doug McMillon and John Furner host a Giving Tuesday event for Bentonville child care center by Melissa Gute at Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette. “Shelley McMillon shared her experience of sending her sons through the center. “They were always on top of their game and always very caring,” she said of the center’s employees.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Amazon removes ‘offensive’ Allah ‘doormats and dog mats’

Sarah Jessica Parker’s shoe line opening its first store

Can Fast-Fashion Brands Like Zara Go Sustainable?

New study compares Amazon to 19th century robber barons, urges policymakers to break up

Will Eataly take a bite out of Boston’s food scene?

PRWeek 2016 Best Places to Work U.S.

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Tipsheet: Amazon Worker Jumps Off Co. Bldg | Cartier Hits Wmart | Dick’s Acquires | Galanti @ Chamber


Amazon Worker Jumps Off Company Building After E-Mail Note by Spencer Soper at Bloomberg. “An Inc. employee was injured when he leaped off a building at the company’s Seattle headquarters in what police characterized as a suicide attempt. The man, who wasn’t identified by authorities, sent an e-mail visible to hundreds of co-workers, including Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos, before the incident occurred.” Read more


Dick’s Sporting Goods acquires mobile scorekeeping company GameChanger Media by Anthony Ha at TechCrunch. “GameChanger…(is) used by 165,000 amateur baseball and softball teams to track scores and stats for individual players.” Read more


Ex-Walmart and 99 Cents Only Stores Exec named Neiman Marcus Interim CFO/COO by Korri Kezar at Dallas Business Journal. “Neiman Marcus has named Michael Fung as its interim chief financial officer and chief operating officer after former CFO and COO Donald Grimes left the company two weeks ago.” Read more


Wegmans store in Virginia taken off the table by Todd Clausen at Democrat & Chronicle. Read more


Inside look: How Amazon’s robots picked and packed purchases on Cyber Monday by Taylor Soper at GeekWire. “GeekWire got a behind-the-scenes look at Amazon’s massive fulfillment center in DuPont, Wash. — an hour south of its Seattle headquarters — on the company’s busiest day of the year…” Video/Pics


Capital One paying $200 million for Cabela’s bank by Matt Olberding at Lincoln Journal Star. Read more


Cartier Says Walmart Is Not Authorized to Sell Its $18,000 Diamond Watches by Phil Wahba at Fortune. “…Cartier took aim at Walmart on Monday and said it could not vouch for the authenticity of the watches sold via” Read more


QVC Appoints Bob Spieth to EVP, Customer and Business Services Press release


Tiffany posts first increase in sales in 8 quarters via CNBC. “…same-store sales fell 2 percent in the third quarter ended Oct. 31. Analysts on average had expected a 2.8 percent drop, according to research firm Consensus Metrix. Tiffany’s net sales rose slightly to $949.3 million from $938.2 million a year earlier.” Read more


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Only 59% of Prime members shopped in-store on Black Friday – down from 65% last year Press release


Ikea racks up record sales in Canada amid redecoration and home-buying spree by Hollie Shaw at Financial Post. “Ikea Canada also reported Tuesday that its online sales rose 41.3 per cent in 2016, while its in-store sales were up 12.7 per cent and customer visits climbed five per cent…Ikea Canada grew its market share in home furnishings by one per cent to 9.4 per cent, according to Fusion Retail Analytics. That’s up from a 5.8 per cent share in 2013.” Read more


NRF CEO on CNBC: “Shay said that eight of the top 10 largest e-commerce platforms are operated by brick-and-mortar stores…” Video / Read more


Shoe Carnival Q3 Comp Sales -0.4% Press release


Costco CFO to speak at Dec. 1 Chamber lunch at Mercer Island Reporter. “The deadline for reservations is 9 a.m. on Nov. 29. Call the chamber office at 206-232-3404 to reserve your space and to pay by credit card. You can also email your reservation to” Galanti in cart pic / Read more


TJX to expand overtime pay despite block of Obama rule by Greg Ryan at Boston Business Journal. Read more


AMAZON HEADACHE? – Trump adds antitrust expert to Justice transition team via Yahoo News. “An antitrust division designed by (David) Higbee would be tough on price-fixing and mergers of competitors but would be cautious in challenging deals where companies buy suppliers or incidents where companies are accused of breaking antitrust law to run competitors out of business, McDonald said.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

HSN names former Procter & Gamble executive to C-suite

Ohio State attacker reportedly worked at Home Depot store, was employee of the month

Brothers arrested for driving dirt bike through Walmart in cape and underwear (pics/video)

Watch the latest drone video of Apple’s new $5 billion Cupertino campus

Inside New York’s Club for Influential Women: The Wing has 500 members and brands want in

The Great Smoky Mountains burn: Terrified guests trapped inside a burning Hilton hotel

Suspect charged after fatally shooting good Samaritan at Texas Walmart

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Tipsheet: WashPo Tries BOPUS | Gap’s Analytical CEO | Amazon Review Limits | Black Friday Data


NRF: U.S. shoppers spend less over holiday weekend amid discounting by Nandita Bose at Reuters. “Shoppers spent $289.19 over the four-day weekend through Sunday compared to $299.60 over the same period a year earlier. The survey found that 154 million people made purchases over the four days, up from 151 million a year ago. However, there was a 4.2 percent rise in consumers who shopped online and a 3.7 percent drop in shoppers who purchased in a store.” Read more


Adobe: Online spending over Thanksgiving and Black Friday grew nearly 18% to $5.27 billion compared with last year via Fox Business. Read more


Thanksgiving online shoppers bought twice as much through phones as through tablets by Jason Del Rey at Recode. “More than a quarter of online sales on Thanksgiving — 27 percent, to be exact — took place via mobile phones compared with 22 percent last year, according to Adobe, which tracks $7.50 of every $10 spent online.” Read more


Adobe: Cyber Monday expected to generate at least $3.36 billion in revenue — up nearly 10% from last year — bringing the Thursday-through-Monday online total to more than $10 billion by Sophia Rosenbaum at NY Post. Read more


This is your holiday season reminder that Amazon doesn’t always have the lowest prices by Jason Del Rey at Recode. “Over at… you could find better prices on 46 percent of top-selling toys that both sites carried.” Read more


As Gap Struggles, Its Analytical CEO Prizes Data Over Design by Khadeeja Safdar at Wall Street Journal. “The 61-year-old CEO is blunt in his criticism of the industry’s long fascination with creative executives who are given broad powers to set the overall image of a brand. “We have cycled through so many, and each has been proclaimed as the next savior,” he said. In the end, they were “false messiahs.” Read more (subscription)


Amazon puts new limit on (some) customer reviews: No more than 5 a week by Todd Bishop at GeekWire. “Books, music and video are exempt from the limit, but the new cap applies to the rest of Amazon’s vast online selection of products.” Read more


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Washington Post: What happened when I tried ‘buy online, pick up in store’ on Black Friday by Sarah Halzack. “My visit to Walmart was quite speedy, clocking in five minutes and 54 seconds…I spent 12 minutes and 59 seconds in Macy’s — and it felt even longer than that…The most frustration came at Best Buy, where the process took 18 minutes and 41 seconds…When I got to Target, things weren’t looking good: The pickup counter wasn’t even staffed. But, improbably, I ended up getting out of there faster than anywhere else, in five minutes and 41 seconds.” Read more


Amazon Leans on Technology to Speed Training of Holiday Workers by Laura Stevens at Wall Street Journal. “To prepare for the flood of holiday orders already under way, the retail giant has been using technology ranging from touch screens to robots to shrink the time it takes to train new hires to as little as two days, compared with up to six weeks for a conventional warehouse job.” Read more (subscription)


Why does Walgreens charge 1,237% more than Costco for prescription drugs? by Laurie Roberts at The Arizona Republic via USA Today. Read more


Verto Analytics: Top 15 retailers based on the online activities of 20,000 U.S. consumers during October 2016 at Adweek. See the chart


Macy’s Web Site Buckles Under Heavy Traffic on Black Friday by Phil Wahba at Fortune. Read more


Amazon reportedly eyeing $1B acquisition of Middle Eastern e-commerce giant by John Cook at GeekWire. Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Amazon’s commander of the Cloud shares his vision

Bed Bath & Beyond acquires

Why Half a Million Young Japanese Can’t Face School or Work

Luxury industry is severely missing personalization in online experience

Inside the secretive Chinese space program that could threaten NASA’s dominance

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Tipsheet: H.Dep CFO on CNBC | Mall Robots | Amazon Turkeys | Smart Garbage Cans


Home Depot’s CFO talk to Jim Cramer by Abigail Stevenson at CNBC. “This year, Home Depot expects to sell 2.8 million live Christmas trees, and enough LED Christmas lights to circle the globe six-and-a-half million times. “We leaned to it in a big way, and we are going to have a knockout black Friday” (Carol) Tomé said.” Video interview / Read more


…Home Depot wants to grab a bigger chunk of Black Friday shoppers’ spending by Krystina Gustafson at CNBC. “In an effort to capitalize on consumers’ desire to decorate their homes, Home Depot — the largest seller of live Christmas trees — has grown its seasonal assortment five times over since launching the category a decade ago.” Read more


Malls are trying to use humanoid robots to get shoppers back from the internet by April Glaser at Recode. “For the first extended time in the U.S., shoppers at the Westfield Malls in San Francisco and Santa Clara, Calif., can meet the four-foot-tall roving android, where it will be working for the next three months. Shoppers at b8ta, a Palo Alto tech store, had a week to meet Pepper back in August.” Read more


US durable goods orders up 4.8% in Oct vs 1.5% increase expected at CNBC. Read more


Smart garbage can device will tell Amazon to automatically reorder stuff you throw away by Nat Levy at GeekWire. “GeniCan’s newest device is set for release in January. It will attach to a bin, and when people throw away items, they can scan barcodes and add them to a shopping list on their smartphone.” Read more


New Yorkers are lining up around the block and into the subway to buy Snap’s new Spectacles by Kurt Wagner at Recode. “I knew the lines were long, but then I saw this video from Mashable’s Sam Sheffer. Wow. It goes around the block, around another block, then down and back up a set of subway steps before extending another 100 yards or so. “I estimate probably 400 people are on line,” Sheffer said while walking the line on Facebook Live.” Read more


Department Stores Lure Black Friday Shoppers With $19.99 Women’s Boots by Suzanne Kapner at Wall Street Journal. “Belk Inc. started offering the heavily discounted boots as its “door-buster” seven years ago. The promotion was so successful that it has been repeated every year since, and adopted by rivals like Kohl’sCorp., Macy’s Inc. and J.C. Penney Co. “$19.99 is a magic number,” said Joseph Safdeye, chief executive of E.S. Originals Inc., a shoe importer that came up with the idea.” Read more (subscription)


A Federal Judge Just Blocked the Obama Administration’s Signature Overtime Rule via Fortune. “The Labor Department can appeal to the New Orleans, Louisiana-based 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, but that court has stymied the Obama administration before…the Labor Department could drop the appeal after Republican President-elect Donald Trump takes office in January.” Read more


Amazon’s Treasure Truck trots out the turkeys during pre-Thanksgiving trip around Seattle by Kurt Schlosser at GeekWire. “Amazon’s lit up, roaming, deals on wheels destination was out and about delivering fresh, 14- to 16-pound free-range turkeys from Woodinville, Wash.-based meat company Porter & York. The $43 deal also included a Cuisinart thermometer, roasting pan and roasting bag.” Pics / Read more


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Couche-Tard profits hurts by a flood, a hurricane and an oil pipeline leak by Damon Van Der Linde at Financial Post. “Investors seemed understanding of these setbacks, with the stock gaining 0.60 per cent to $63.50 by market close Tuesday.” Read more


Barnes & Noble Q2 Comp Sales -3.2% Press release


Inside Bob Iger’s Massive Disney Empire by James Rainey at Bloomberg.”Nothing about Bob Iger’s middle-class upbringing in New York…suggests that he would find a muse in a Tokyo subway station. But it is there, in a tiny sushi bar, that the chairman and CEO of the Walt Disney Co. finds inspiration, in a wizened nonagenarian who spends most of his waking hours sculpting fine slices of blue fin and eel and combining them with rice that is grown exclusively for the restaurateur…” Read more


Amazon’s delivery drones just might be on the job in 2020 … at least in Britain by Alan Boyle at GeekWire. Read more


Amazon Is Turning Up The Heat On Counterfeit Products by Leena Rao at Fortune. “…testing a new set of digital tools called Brand Central to help merchants prevent other sellers from copying and selling their products, tech news site CNET reported on Tuesday.” Read more


How Apple Lost China to Two Unknown Local Smartphone Makers at Bloomberg. “Apple needs to offer something cutting-edge to appeal to maturing Chinese smartphone users,” Counterpoint Research director Neil Shah writes. Oppo and Vivo can use the time until then to cement their positions, he said.” Read more


Pilot strike could delay Amazon holiday deliveries by Chris Wetterich at Cincinnati Business Courier. “About 250 pilots who fly for ABX Air, a cargo carrier that serves DHL and, are striking, grounding flights from both Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport and Wilmington Air Park…ABX flies 35 flights a day for Amazon Prime Air.” Read more


GameStop misses its own sales estimates with Q3 earnings by Korri Kezar at Dallas Business Journal. “Next quarter, GameStop now expects comparable store sales to range between a deficit of 7 percent and 12 percent.” Read more


Don’t Give Up on the Guitar. Fender Is Begging You by Kim Bhasin at Bloomberg. “Almost everyone who picks up a guitar, about 90 percent, abandons it within the first year, according to Mooney. Many give up within three months, frustrated or unwilling to commit.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Hackers stole customers’ card data from landmark NYC venues

Mark Cuban reportedly meets with Steve Bannon at Manhattan bar

NFL players hit in eyes with lasers at Mexico City game

Ex-Target exec loses MSFA commission seat, said governor blamed ‘friction’

Elderly grocery shopper stabbed during orange juice heist

Wall Street Journal: Department Stores’ Big Sales Are Getting Smaller

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Tipsheet: No Aloe in Aloe @ Target & Wmart | D.Tree Beats | B.Buy CEO Close-Up | Wmart Lab -91 Jobs


No Evidence of Aloe Vera Found in the Aloe Vera at Wal-Mart, Target & CVS by Lydia Mulvany & Zeke Faux at Bloomberg. “Aloe’s three chemical markers — acemannan, malic acid and glucose — were absent in the tests for Wal-Mart, Target and CVS products conducted by a lab hired by Bloomberg News. The three samples contained a cheaper element called maltodextrin, a sugar sometimes used to imitate aloe. The gel that’s sold at another retailer, Walgreens, contained one marker, malic acid, but not the other two.” Read more


Dollar Tree Q3 Comp Sales +1.7% (+1.4% expected) “The same-store sales growth, representing the Company’s 35th consecutive quarter of positive same-store sales, was driven by increases in comparable customer count and average ticket.” Press release


Fox Business: Dollar Tree’s Quarterly Profit More Than Doubles “Excluding items, the company earned 81 cents per share, beating the average analysts’ estimate of 78 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.” Read more


Burlington Stores Q3 Comp Sales +3.7% “For the fourth quarter of Fiscal 2016 the Company expects: Net sales to increase in the range of 6.6% to 7.6%; Comparable store sales to increase in the range of 2.5% to 3.5%.” Press release


Best Buy CEO Hubert Joly smiling over the retailer’s holiday prospects by Kavita Kumar at Star Tribune. “…being an avid user and evangelist for technology is also part of the job — and one that Joly takes seriously. He bought a drone last year and plans to buy another this holiday. His house is filled with several Google Home devices, the tech giant’s version of the voice-activated-and-responding Amazon Echo. He has an Echo, too, in his kitchen and is a Prime member himself. “But Alexa and I are not really on speaking terms anymore,” he quipped.” Read more


Deloitte: 76% of Americans plan to shop over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend “Shoppers expect to spend 51% of their budget online and 46% in physical stores…84% plan to shop in-store over the holiday weekend and 87% plan to do so online…69% plan to head to stores and 55% intend to shop online on Black Friday…Cyber Monday: 74% of respondents plan to shop online on Cyber Monday.” Press release


Wal-Mart’s Dallas optical lab loses 91 jobs to automation by Maria Halkias at Dallas Morning News. “While trade policies were a big issue in the presidential election, manufacturing jobs are still being lost in the U.S. to automation. Last year, Wal-Mart said it would spend $10 million to upgrade manufacturing equipment at its Fayetteville, Ark.; Crawfordsville, Ind.; and Dallas optical labs.” Read more


Eddie Bauer faces tough climb to reclaim former heights by Janet I. Tu at Seattle Times. “Earlier this year, the company moved its Bellevue Square flagship store from a 8,390-square-foot location to a space half that size. The store design morphed from a lodge motif to a more spare look with darker walls and ceilings and lots of light, intended to make the products stand out. So far, 57 of the company’s 370 stores worldwide (335 in the U.S. and Canada) have this new design. And the company is looking to downsize its other locations as leases come up.” Read more


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Amazon reportedly wants to include live sports as part of Prime membership by Taylor Soper at GeekWire. “The Journal reported that Amazon wanted to exclusively license NBA’s League Pass streaming product; it is also reaching out to traditional broadcasters like Univision and ESPN about the content they own but don’t end up airing on TV.” Read more | WSJ article (subscription)


Brewers Bet Beer Drinkers Seek More Sober Suds by Saabira Chaudhuri at Wall Street Journal. “It’s kind of like nonbeneficial exercise—why would people use this if the main benefit doesn’t exist?” says Matt Voda, a New York-based virtual-reality developer who in 2013 did market research on nonalcoholic beer for Heineken as part of an internship with the brewer. Mr. Voda’s research during his three months at Heineken showed nonalcoholic beer was primarily drunk by older people whose doctors had advised them to cut back on alcohol.” Read more (subscription)


Amazon Echo sales reach 5M in two years, research firm says by Taylor Soper at GeekWire. “CIRP’s estimates line up with other research firms. New York consulting firm Activate Inc. estimated that Amazon sold 4.4 million Echo units in its first full year of sales, after becoming available to the general public in 2015.” Read more


Lowe’s Unveils LoweBot, The Bilingual Robot That Is Eager To Please by Don Ford at CBS SF Bay Area. “One guy wants a soft drink. “I’m looking for a Soda,” he said. “Drain cleaner,” the robot responds. The robot likes specifics. “Do you have Pepsi?” the man asks. That worked.“I followed it and it took me right to it!” the man said.” Video / Read more


Amazon has big plans to expand its online tickets business by Jason Del Rey at Recode. “In one of the recent job postings, Amazon said it is looking to hire new employees “to develop our international expansion strategy for Europe and Asia.” The company has also been hiring Amazon Tickets employees at its headquarters in Seattle, potentially signaling plans for a U.S. ticketing business. “[O]ur vision goes beyond just selling tickets as we aim to disrupt the entire live entertainment experience, including what happens before, during and after the show,” one posting reads.” Read more


Ex-Staples President Joins Barnes & Noble as COO Press release


Orchard Supply opening first San Diego County store by Karen Pearlman at San Diego Union Tribune. “…there will be a ribbon cutting at 6 p.m. at the store on Dec. 8. A “grand opening” is also set for Dec. 10, said store manager Shane Holly…They will open new stores later this year in Rolling Hills and Culver City. Another store set to open next year in Hollywood.” Read more


Venezuela’s Nemesis Is a Hardware Salesman at a Home Depot Store by Anatoly Kurmanaev at Wall Street Journal. “Mr. Díaz, 60 years old, does more than anyone else to set the price of everything from rice to aspirin to cars in his native Venezuela, influencing the inflation rate and swaying millions of dollars of daily currency transactions. How? He is president of one of Venezuela’s most popular and insurgent websites,, which provides a benchmark exchange rate used by his compatriots to buy and sell black-market dollars.” Read more (subscription) | Story via


Singing Dollar General cashier keeping his day job, for now by Rachel Greco at Lansing State Journal. “The last few weeks have been unexpected for the East Lansing resident and Dollar General cashier, whose impromptu rendition of “Ascension” by Maxwell was captured on video and went viral this month. Holliday’s week began with a Monday appearance on “Good Morning America,” and ended with a rare opportunity, an invitation from Maxwell himself to take the Detroit venue’s stage in front of thousands of people.” Read more | Video


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Why the ‘Birchbox for Muslim Women’ Is Sending Customers Pepper Spray

Trump Victory Threatens Alibaba’s American Dream

How Kellogg paid “independent experts” to tout cereal

The Grand Tour premiere breaks Amazon viewership records, drives Prime sign-ups

Hillary Clinton spotted browsing books post-election at bookstore in Rhode Island

Ottawa requires provinces to phase out coal by 2030, expected to affect taxpayers

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Tipsheet: Amazon’s Secret Drive-Up Groc Nears | Cabela’s Miss But Execs Bonus | Toys R Us CEO Iview | 7-Eleven Scandal


Amazon’s secretive drive-up grocery store in Seattle looks ready to open soon by Nat Levy at GeekWire. “A recent report suggested the online retail giant’s pick up grocery locations in Seattle could open by the end of the year, and the Ballard store looks like it’s on track based on a recent visit to the site. The project just this week received a temporary certificate of occupancy from the city, which means major construction aspects of the project are done, and Amazon can begin to occupy the building even though there is still some work left to do.” Pics / Read more


Cyber Monday eats Black Friday as Wal-Mart takes holiday mash-up one step further by Krystina Gustafson at CNBC. “For the first time this season, the world’s largest retailer will kick off its Cyber Week deals the day after Thanksgiving—a time typically reserved for in-store door busters. The online sale begins at 12:01 a.m. Eastern on Black Friday, with deals including a Samsung 60-inch HD smart TV for more than $1,000 off.” Read more


Tyson Foods Sales Drop 12.8%; CEO to Step Down at Fox Business. “The company said its president, Tom Hayes, will succeed (Donnie) Smith as chief executive.” Read more


At the center of debate over Costco plant in Fremont: How 17 million chickens will affect the area by Barbara Soderlin at Omaha World-Herald. “Opponents of the chicken plant that Costco wants to build in Fremont have sounded an alarm about its effect on the region’s air and water quality, even suggesting it could harm drinking water in Omaha, 25 miles down the Platte River…” Read more


Build-A-Bear pursuing growth in smaller spaces, licensing deals by Lisa Brown at St.Louis Post Dispatch. “We don’t think of ourselves anymore as a mall retailer,” CEO Sharon John said in an interview. Instead, Build-A-Bear is making changes to ensure it’s where its consumers are…“It’s not that malls aren’t going to be an important part of our portfolio,” John said, adding the chain is looking at adding more stores-within-stores. “You might see us in Carnival ships, or shop-in-shop stores at select Macy’s or Toys R Us stores.” Read more


**A message from the 2017 Philadelphia Gift Show – See emerging artists and gift, home décor, and color trends! Get a sneak peak in our Product Spotlight, and see our list of unique exhibitors. Sweetening the pot, this all-category gift show runs concurrently with the Philadelphia National Candy, Gift & Gourmet Show. See it all January 6-9, 2017, at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center, in Oaks, PA. Register now | Website


Cabela’s execs collect bonuses, despite missing profit goals by Russell Hubbard at Omaha World-Herald. “The executives failed to achieve the financial goals that were laid out ahead of time to qualify for the bonuses. So the company just changed the objectives after the fact to bring the goals in line with actual performance — essentially rigging the bonus game in favor of the bosses. They employed no subterfuge, openly describing it all in the SEC document.” Read more


Wal-Mart controller Steve Whaley to step down December 31 at The City Wire. “Wal-Mart Stores announced Friday (Nov. 18) that Senior Vice President and Controller Steve Whaley, 57, is resigning, effective Dec. 31…Whaley will be replaced by David Chojnowski, effective Jan. 1, 2017. Chojnowski, vice president and controller of the Wal-Mart U.S. since October 2014, will report to Chief Financial Officer Brett Biggs.” Read more


Amazon’s Marketplace merchants get help ‘poking the dragon’ for profit by Angel Gonzalez at Seattle Times. “McCabe is part of a growing industry of consultants, in many cases former Amazonians, who purport to offer insight into the mysteries of the Seattle colossus. “It’s become a big thing” in the past three years or so, says Rhonda Schneider, the organizer of the Sellers’ Conference for Online Entrepreneurs, a twice-yearly gathering for online merchants, about the consultants.” Read more


Advertisers Search for Middle America by Alexander Bruell & Suzanne Vranica at Wall Street Journal. “Every so often you have to reset what is the aspirational goal the public has with regard to the products we sell,” said Harris Diamond, McCann’s CEO. “So many marketing programs are oriented toward metro elite imagery.” Marketing needs to reflect less of New York and Los Angeles culture, he said, and more of “Des Moines and Scranton.” Read more (subscription)


Toys R Us CEO Sits Down with Fortune 42 minute audio interview


More store closures may be ahead for Abercrombie & Fitch by Krystina Gustafson at CNBC. “Roughly 50 percent of the retailer’s 745 U.S. leases are up for renewal over the next 18 months, the company said Friday….”I would not be surprised if half of those [locations up for renewal] end up closing,” Garrick Brown, Cushman & Wakefield’s vice president of retail research for the Americas, told CNBC.” Read more


Here’s Why Gun Shops Probably Won’t Set a Black Friday Sales Record via Fortune. “I’m not expecting it to be any slower than our normal Black Friday,” said Kellie Weeks, owner of Georgia Gun Store in Gainesville, Georgia. “But if Hillary had won, we would have sold out already.” Read more


Sabra hummus recalled for possible Listeria contamination via CNBC. Read more


Amazon partners with Fiat Chrysler to sell cars online in Italy by Taylor Soper at GeekWire. “Italian buyers will be able to purchase three Chrysler models — the 500, the Panda and the 500L — on Amazon with an “additional discount”…Amazon will contact buyers after they click online and help them finalize the purchase at a physical dealership…The entire process takes two weeks, Reuters reported.” Read more


Australia: Brisbane 7-Eleven caught forcing workers to pay back their wages in cash to managers – as stores ‘threaten to sack them if they don’t because they can’t afford award rates’ at Daily Mail. “She said her bosses told her they cannot afford to pay staff at government rate and if she refused to return a portion of her wage, she could ‘go find another job,’ The ABC reported.” Read more / See video


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Amazon appears to tweak Donald Trump with a new Prime ad promoting religious tolerance

Mattress-maker Casper plans brick-and-mortar stores

Lowe’s Completes Acquisition Of Rona Preferred Shares

Walmart Foundation Donates $500K to Washington Regional’s Newest Women Center

Molson Coors CFO Mauricio Restrepo resigns because of “personal conduct”

Less than 3% of cars sold in the U.S. have manual transmissions

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Tipsheet: Hibbett +0.7% | F.Locker +4.7% | Gap -3.0% | Alibaba’s Squad | Lowe’s Uses Facebook


Gap Q3 Comp Sales -3.0% “Gap Global: negative 8 percent…Banana Republic Global: negative 8 percent…Old Navy Global: positive 3 percent.” Press release


…Gap Shares Flop After Chain Says It Will Close More Stores Than Expected at Fortune. “Given that challenging traffic trends have continued, we are investing meaningfully in marketing across our portfolio brands during the holiday season,” outgoing Chief Financial Officer Sabrina Simmons said on an earnings call.” Read more


Hibbett Sports Q3 Comp Sales +0.7% “At the end of the quarter, we opened our first store in California and are excited about the growth opportunity for this state in the future,” Rosenthal continued.” Press release


Foot Locker Beats Profit Expectations While Sales Match at Fox Business. “Same-store sales grew 4.7%, in line with the FactSet consensus.” Read more


Restoration Hardware’s new incarnation seeks to restore retailer’s luster by Janet I. Tu at Seattle Times. “After nearly a year and a half of construction at University Village, upscale furnishings retailer Restoration Hardware on Friday is opening RH Seattle, the eighth expansive, multilevel store the company says represents its current identity and future direction.” Read more


Jeff Bezos Invests Billions to Make Amazon a Top E-Commerce Player in India by Newley Purnell at Wall Street Journal. “Bank of America Merrill Lynch estimates that by the end of this year Amazon will control about 28% of India’s total e-commerce gross merchandise volume. That is still well behind market leader Flipkart’s 43% share. But if you take away the sales of Flipkart’s separate fashion website, Amazon’s sales have been higher in recent months, says a report by Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s Sachin Salgaonkar.” Read more (subscription)


How Alibaba Turns Wealthy Shopaholics Into a Marketing Squad by Selina Wang at Bloomberg. “…Meng’s lavish spending habits earned her an invite to Alibaba Passport, or APASS. An exclusive rewards program, APASS is a mashup of Facebook, Amazon Prime and the American Express Black Card. Its 100,000 members get the usual perks—deals, trips, personal service—but are also encouraged to join online communities of shopaholics who blog and talk up Alibaba.” Read more


TreeHouse, an eco-friendly home improvement alternative, to sell products online Read more


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Lowe’s Is Using Facebook Live to Unveil Its Black Friday Deals This Weekend by Christopher Heine at Adweek. “(Lowe’s) will reveal 11 Black Friday deals during a 20-minute segment on Facebook Live on Saturday. Lowe’s didn’t disclose a budget spend, but it’s been running video ads on the social platform for the last two weeks to push the livestream event, which is called “Mystery Box Bonanza.” Read more


Amazon offers exclusive shopping deals to people who order through its AI voice assistant Alexa by Arjun Kharpal. Read more


Bon-Ton sees same store sales plummet 4.9% in third quarter by Melanie Lawder at Milwaukee Business Journal. Read more’s Marketplace Concept Spreads to Other Retailers by Laura Stevens at Wall Street Journal. “(Crate & Barrel) is adding items to its online assortment, such as kitchen tools and other small appliances, that it won’t handle or ship…More than 250 retailers have added this type of capability in the past couple of years.” Read more (subscription)


Best Buy’s continues to outperform even while Samsung recall dents holiday momentum by Kavita Kumar at Star Tribune. “Best Buy executives said the issue, along with some other product recalls in appliances, had a $60 million impact in the third quarter and will lead to $200 million less in sales than expected in the fourth quarter. The company now expects comparable sales in the November-to-January quarter to range from down 1 percent to up 1 percent.” Read more


The Buckle Q3 Comp Sales -15.3% Press release


Walmart Canada snatches more gains from traditional grocers, but the Juggernaut is slowing by Hollie Shaw at Financial Post. “In Canada, a “cost analytics program continues in helping drive down cost of goods allowing us to invest in price,” Brett Biggs…told a conference call Thursday.” Read more


Stage Stores Q3 Comp Sales -8.2% Press release


NRF Welcomes Defeat of Labor Department’s Speech-Chilling ‘Persuader’ Rule Press release


Sprint wants majority stake in Kroger’s i-wireless by Bowdeya Tweh at Cincinnati Enquirer. Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

This bizarre toy is the hottest item of the holiday season

Table service, touch-screen order kiosks coming to all U.S. McDonald’s

Nielsen Forecasts Digital Shopping Will Drive Retail Holiday Sales In 2016

Carhartt’s New Ad Chronicles the 127-Year Evolution of the Working Man

Fast Retailing CEO Not Interested in J. Crew, Other Acquisitions (WSJ Subs.)

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Tipsheet: Wmart +1.2% | B.Buy +1.8% | Dead Deer in Wmart Cart | ‘Costco Odyssey’


Walmart Q3 US Comp Sales +1.2% “…driven by a traffic increase of 0.7%. Neighborhood Market comp sales increased approximately 5.2%. Net sales at Walmart International were $28.4 billion, a decrease of 4.8%.” Press release | Q3 Earnings Call Slides


…CNBC: Wal-Mart beats on earnings, raises lower end of guidance, but revenue falls short “Notably, Wal-Mart’s digital sales — which have been a source of ongoing softness — picked up during the period, growing 20.6 percent excluding currency swings. Recently acquired was included in the quarter for six weeks.” Read more


…Fox Business: Wal-Mart’s comparable sales miss estimates “(Comp sales rose) 1.2 percent, excluding fuel price fluctuations…That is weaker than market expectations of a 1.3 percent rise, according to research firm Consensus Metrix.” Read more


Best Buy Q3 Comp Sales +1.8% “From a merchandising perspective, comparable sales growth in home theater, mobile phones, wearables and connected home was partially offset by declines in gaming.” Press release


…Fox Business: Best Buy’s same-store sales beat expectations “Analysts on average had expected a 1 percent rise (in comp sales), according to research firm Consensus Metrix.” Read more


NY Times: Across China, Walmart Faces Labor Unrest as Authorities Stand Aside by Javier C. Hernandez. Read more


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Neiman Marcus partners with Rent the Runway by Korri Kezar at Dallas Business Journal. “The Washington Post reported Wednesday that Neiman will add Rent the Runway store-within-a-store concepts to some of its locations, starting with a San Francisco store opening Friday.” Read more


With Apple now selling used iPhones, the new phone market may have peaked by Tom Mainelli at Recode. Read more


Walmart’s Deisha Barnett joins Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce by Diana Bradley at PR Week. “Barnett is joining the Chamber after nine years at Walmart, where she directed comms strategy for the biggest shopping events of the year, such as back-to-school and Black Friday. She also led communications for the retailer’s community giving and diversity initiatives.” Read more


CST shareholders greenlight $4.4B merger with Circle K parent by Katie Burke at San Antonio Business Journal. Read more | Press release


Smart & Final Q3 Comp Sales -1.3% Press release


Macy’s will start closing stores before the end of the year by Andy Brownfield at Cincinnati Business Courier. Read more


Fifth Avenue protests could mean trouble at Tiffany’s this holiday by Krystina Gustafson at CNBC.”That’s because its Fifth Avenue store accounts for roughly 20 percent of Tiffany’s U.S. sales, and represents some 10 percent of its total revenues, according to various estimates.” Read more


…Fifth Avenue holds its title as most expensive retail street by Brielle Jaekel at Luxury Daily. Read more


Southeastern Grocers Unveils 73 New Harveys Supermarkets Press release


American Apparel suitor doesn’t care if clothes are US-made by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “At least one potential buyer of the company, which this week sought bankruptcy protection for a second time, wants to find out. “If it’s important to the brand, I’m not sure we are interested in buying it,” said the executive.” Read more


Lowe’s Q3 Earnings Call Transcript via Seeking Alpha Read here


Loblaw, Metro talks with suppliers pay off in better results as food price inflation stays flat by Hollie Shaw at Financial Post. “In the summer, Loblaw asked its largest suppliers to cut costs by 1.45 per cent by September in response to what it called “unjustified cost increases.” Read more


Deloitte Announces 2016 North America Technology Fast 500™ Rankings Press release


DEAD DEER IN THE SHOPPING CART – Men roll dead deer into Walmart store at CBS 6 – Virginia. “It wasn’t until she actually walked inside the store that her daughter asked, “Did you see that deer in the shopping cart?”…The daughter took a photo. The gutted deer, was in the shopping cart, dripping blood on the floor, she said.” Video / Pic


Target lifts holiday forecast after better-than-expected third quarter by Kavita Kumar at Star Tribune. “Obviously it’s been a very unusual November — that’s probably the ultimate understatement,” Cornell told reporters.” Read more | Earnings call transcript


Woman Goes on ‘Costco Odyssey’ – Visits Every State with a Costco – CEO Jokes He May Join Her by Jennifer Huffman at Mesabi Daily News.”I’m a woman of faith,” said Pope. While at first even she thought her idea was a bit ridiculous, “I believe God was telling me” to do this cross-country Costco road trip. “Over time, this trip started taking on a life of its own.” Read more


Former Kroger CEO David Dillon will head KU chancellor search committee by Sara Shepherd at LJ World. Read more


Former Archer Daniels Midland CEO Dwayne Andreas dead at 98 via The Denver Post. Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Walmart Museum in Bentonville adds new exhibits (front door from Sam Walton’s first Ben Franklin store in Newport)

The 2017 Fortune Crystal Ball (“Ross Stores Will Go On A Retail Rampage”)

Ancient Ten Commandments tablet sold at auction for $850,000

Electric cars are now required to make noise at low speeds so they don’t sneak up and kill us

Amazon’s app gives its customers X-Ray vision – can tell you exactly what’s in a delivery box

Police: Pickpockets target elderly Publix shoppers

Fendi to bring “Happy Room” to VIP clients

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