Tipsheet: Target Removes Hemp | W.Foods Breach | Jet’s PL | Billy Bass/Alexa


Whole Foods suffers data breach in some stores by Angelica LaVito at CNBC. “Whole Foods suffered a data breach of credit card information used in taprooms and full table-service restaurants in some of the grocery chain’s stores, the company said Thursday. Whole Foods noted these venues use a different point-of-sale system than the main checkout systems. Credit cards used at those systems were not affected, the company said.” Read more


Ikea has bought TaskRabbit by Kara Swisher & Theodore Schleifer at NY Post. “The price of the deal could not be determined, but the contract labor marketplace company has raised about $50 million since it was founded nine years ago. Sources added that TaskRabbit will become an independent subsidiary within Ikea and that CEO Stacy Brown-Philpot and its staff would remain.” Read more site to launch its own line of groceries by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “…with plans to introduce more than 60 food and household items in the coming months…“The branded vendors are privately telling us that they are relieved about the division becoming a big private label seller,” said Flickinger. “They see as the best opportunity to slow Amazon’s march towards making unreasonable demands in its procurement.” Read more


Hemp pills and oils make brief appearance at, get purged from the site at Pioneer Press. “Although some medical marijuana advocates celebrated the appearance of Charlotte’s Web products on Target’s website, the product was quickly made unavailable.” Read more


Rite Aid Blames Walgreens Deal Drama for Poor Performance by Phil Wahba at Fortune. “Rite Aid tried to mitigate the blow by announcing it had tapped a respected executive in the drugstore industry to be its new president and operations chief. Kermit Crawford, who spent 30 years at Walgreens but left in 2014, will join the company next Thursday. At Walgreens, he had last served as executive vice president and president of pharmacy health and wellness.” Read more


Saks clerk and his psychic stole $50K from Fifth Avenue store by Rebecca Rosenberg at NY Post. “He [Axel] said if I returned the items so we could put them on gift cards and buy things. I was directed as to which things to take,” she confessed, according to authorities. The thieves grew even more brazen toward the end of their scheme, snatching goods and strolling out the door with them, court papers allege.” Read more


Fired Harris Teeter worker accused of stealing $78,000 from its charitable foundation by Joe Marusak & Maria David at Charlotte Observer. “Belk is accused of modifying employees’ approved financial hardship applications after payments were made to the workers. The changes caused additional checks to be issued to pay her expenses as well, according to the federal document.” Read more


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Finish Line in talks to sell itself to a British retailer by Josh Kosman at NY Post. “British-based Sports Direct — which owns brands including Everlast and Kangol — is in direct negotiations to buy Finish Line, and an acquisition could be announced in the coming weeks, a source close to the situation said.” Read more


Taco Bell and Forever 21’s new clothing line is the ultimate Generation Z bait by Whitney Filoon at Eater via CNBC. “Think a pink pullover sweatshirt with an embroidered “Live Mas” logo on the chest, or a tank top designed to look like a packet of the chain’s signature Fire Sauce. The collection will be available in Forever 21 stores and via beginning Wednesday, October 11, with a preview event slated for October 11 in downtown LA’s Fashion District.” Read more


P&G board member Frank Blake dismisses Nelson Peltz efforts at Bloomberg. “P&G board member Frank Blake, former CEO of Home Depot Inc., said that Peltz would be joining in the middle of a turnaround that is already yielding results. “If this were at the very beginning and someone said, ‘I have a ton of ideas’ that’s a different situation. We’re two years into this.” Read more


Loblaw says it’s exploring grocery home delivery partnership with Instacart at Toronto Star. “Currently, Canadians have few options for grocery delivery with a small number of companies, like Grocery Gateway, and a few large chains offering the service in limited locations.” Read more


Amazon Alexa To Give Billy Big Mouth Bass a Bigger Playlist by Barb Darrow at Fortune. “What that means is that the fish will be able to lip sync and move to whatever tunes you play on your Amazon Echo speaker. This significantly expands Billy’s repertoire from its early days, when it was limited to covering a few songs like Bobby McFerrin’s “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” or Al Green’s “Take Me To the River.” Read more


A new Amazon plant stalled in the Philly suburbs at Philly Inquirer. “…a months-long state air pollution review has delayed the planned opening of its Amazon Woot! manufacturing facility near Norristown until next year.” Read more


Mattel Nursery Gadget Listens to Babies, Sets Off Privacy Alarms by Todd Shields at Bloomberg. Read more


Lowe’s chief innovation officer Kyle Nel talks to Entrepreneur Read more/38 min podcast


Toymakers say there is ‘widespread panic’ following Toys R Us bankruptcy by Abha Bhattarai at Washington Post via Chicago Tribune. “In total, Toys R Us owes $7.5 billion to a group that includes virtually every major toymaker in the country: Mattel (owed $136 million), Hasbro ($59 million), Spin Master ($33 million), Lego ($32 million), Radio Flyer ($12 million), Crayola ($2.6 million).” Read more


Whole Foods CEO says Amazon helped his company escape ‘whole paycheck’ trap by Eugene Kim at CNBC. “One reason the merger came about is Whole Foods was in a trap, and I couldn’t quite figure how to get out of that trap,” Mackey said at SNAC International’s Executive Leadership Forum, which Food Business news covered. “We escaped the trap. I feel a little bit like Houdini.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Amazon Developing 3 New Sci-Fi Series

Madonna launches MDNA Skin at Barneys New York

Same-store sales for online grocery up 26%

Reebok shows off its 30,000-square-foot gym at future Boston HQ

Wristbands track toxic exposure after Harvey

What Is It About Tater Tots That’s Made Them So Appealing?

USDA closes investigation into a massive organic farm in Colorado — but what did it check?

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories



Eye on Retail Tipsheet is must-read material for 20,000+ retail execs every weekday morning. Tipsheet stories are carefully curated bright and early every morning to ensure fresh and unique content.


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Tipsheet: Rite Aid -3.4% | Pier 1 +1.8% | Amazon #6 Brand | Wawa Fights Claim


Report: Amazon created more jobs last year than 46 states by Kurt Schlosser at GeekWire. “In terms of job creation, if Amazon was a state, those figures would put the company behind only Texas, California, Florida, and New York over that period of time, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.” Read more


Rite Aid Q2 comp sales -3.4% “…consisting of a 4.6 percent decrease in pharmacy sales and a 0.9 percent decrease in front-end sales.” Press release


Wal-Mart Will Offer Free Same-Day Delivery in NYC by Matthew Boyle & Mark Bergan at Bloomberg. “In the New York surrounding area, right now is offering free, same-day delivery,” Lore said at the conference. “And we’ll be doing the same with Wal-Mart very soon.” That might be news to the rest of the company, as a Jet customer-service representative said there was no such service available.” Read more


Best Global Brands 2017 Rankings (Amazon #6, H&M #23, Ikea #25, Ebay#34) at Interbrand. Top 100 list


Pier 1 Q2 comp sales +1.8% “Net sales for the second quarter of fiscal 2018 increased 0.4% to $407.6 million, compared to $405.8 million in the same period last year.” Press release


Kohl’s won’t reveal one number that retailers talk about every holiday season at CNBC. “The company is taking a similar approach to Wal-Mart, which has promised to rely more on its current employees for the busy shopping season, giving them additional hours. Kohl’s will be hiring some seasonal staff, but for the first time ever it won’t talk about that number.” Read more


US 2Q GDP growth revised up to 3.1 percent at Fox Business. Read more


TODAY – Publix Begins Curbside Grocery Pickup Test “Beginning today, Publix will begin testing curbside grocery pickup at two locations: store #0006, Wesley Chapel, Florida, and store #0878, Valrico, Florida. In addition, Metro-Atlanta stores will begin testing curbside pickup by the end of this year.” Press release


**A message from Pirola – Made in Italy designer ironing boards bring style to any home. Exclusively made in Italy for 45 years, these high-quality boards bring design & excitement to the category. Custom colors & designs available. Website | Retailers: request samples at: Italy to U.S. product connection


Wawa comes out swinging against man’s maggot video claim by Kevin Shea at “Wawa says their internal investigation of a customer’s video of what appears to be maggots crawling out of a cheesesteak he bought at the new Ewing store shows no evidence to support the video’s claims.” Read more


CANADA – Metro and Jean Coutu Group are “engaged in exclusive discussions” about a roughly $4.5-billion merger at Toronto Star. “Jean Coutu operates more than 400 stores in Quebec, Ontario and New Brunswick. Metro has more than 600 food stores in Quebec and Ontario, as well as more than 250 drug stores and pharmacies.” Read more


Amazon announced a bunch of new hardware products — here’s a rundown at CNBC. Read more


Lululemon CEO: Retail isn’t dead because people ‘crave human connections’ at Mad Money CNBC. “If you think about the evolution of how people lead their life and the evolution of athletic, mindful lifestyle[s], we know for a fact that people continue to crave human connections,” Potdevin told “Mad Money” host Jim Cramer.” Video/Read more


Walmart Strengthens Sustainable Chemistry Commitment “Walmart aims to reduce its consumables chemical footprint for Walmart and Sam’s Clubs U.S. stores by 10 percent by 2022, becoming the first U.S. retailer to set a time bound reduction goal.” Press release


PEAK HOPS? – Market for hops could go from bloom to bust as growth in craft beer slows by Mai Hoang at Yakima World-Republic via Seattle Times. “A lot of (breweries) purchased hops based on 15 to 18 percent growth, which is what we experienced over the five years prior to last year,” said Steve Carpenter, chief operating officer of YCH Hops, a hop supplier that is owned by local hop growers. “Last year, we had 5 to 6 percent growth.” Read more


NRF Launches New Quarterly Report on Consumer Behavior “According to the report, only 21 percent of consumers surveyed are primarily online shoppers, defined as those who purchase more than half of their items online. By contrast, 79 percent said they purchase half or less of their items online. Among Millennials and Generation Z, 34 percent are primarily online shoppers.” Press release


Can the Yeti Unite America? by Steven Kurutz at NY Times. Read article


‘Walmart’s bleeding this town’ official says by Ian Cummings at Kansas City Star. “In a city of about 10 square miles officers made more than 500 arrests last year at the Walmart store at 10300 E. U.S. 350. The store is the scene of about 30 percent of Raytown’s reported serious crimes.” Read more


NYC mayor has never ordered anything from Amazon at Yoav Gonen at NY Post. “That’s no disrespect to Amazon,” he added. “I understand the efficiency of it . . . but I personally just like the experience of going into a store, choosing something myself, having the physical opportunity to see what the thing looks like.” Read more


Missing Product Information Doesn’t Bother Consumers as Much as It Should by Sunita Sah & Daniel Read at Harvard Business Review. “But despite the elegant and logical predictions of game theory, we can’t count on people to notice or make the correct inferences about missing information. Even if they do notice nondisclosure, it might not occur to them that the salesperson or marketer may have something sinister to hide unless the nondisclosure is strongly flagged.” Read more


Legal Weed May Be a Windfall for McDonald’s and Taco Bell by Jennifer Kaplan at Bloomberg. “Cannabis has been shown to increase users’ appetite…Forty-three percent of legal-marijuana users ate at a McDonald’s restaurant in the past four weeks, the survey found. Eighteen percent ate at Taco Bell… Those results were significantly higher than among respondents who hadn’t visited a dispensary.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

A witch-themed store opens in Kansas

Domino teams up with Home Depot for bicoastal holiday pop-ups

15 Creative Ideas That Changed the World Over the Past Year

Shore town bids ‘somber’ farewell to a beloved Wawa

Despite Brand Safety Concerns, 78% of Marketers Buy Ads on at Least 50 Sites

Ikea Parodies Apple’s Ridiculous Catchphrases

Jimmy John’s delivery driver crashes into pond, dies

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Tipsheet: Tesla C-Stores? | Freshii Out @ Target | WM #1 in Makeup | Buy BJ’s @$4.5B


Tesla could add C-stores and restaurants at car-charging stations by Luke Stangel at Austin Business Journal. “People are coming and spending 20 to 30 minutes at these stops,” Straubel said, according to Restaurant Business. “They want to eat, they want to have a cup of coffee, they want to use the bathroom.” Read more


Freshii a dud at Target; eatery will close all 18 Target store locations by Dan DeBaun at Minneapolis/St.Paul Business Journal. “A statement from Freshii reads. “Sales levels of these locations did not support a continued investment of resources by both parties.” Read more


BJ’s owner looking to sell chain for $4.5B by Josh Kosman at NY Post. “BJ’s was at a similar place this spring but postponed the sale after Amazon, a potential BJ’s suitor, in June agreed to buy Whole Foods, a source said. Amazon is now likely out of the running. Walmart in 2011 showed interest in buying BJ’s, but is not expected to this time, a source said.” Read more


Kohl’s CEO Kevin Mansell to retire in May 2018 by Melanie Lawder at Milwaukee Business Journal. “Kohl’s executives Michelle Gass, 49, and Sona Chawla, 50, will succeed Mansell, with Gass assuming the title of CEO and Chawla taking the role of president of the company.” Read more | Press release


Former Walmart U.S. CEO Bill Simon joins Drizly board by Kelly J. O’Brien at Boston Business Journal. Read more


Retail stores want to cash in on growing chew toy sales by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “The fast-paced growth has convinced some nontraditional toy sellers, like Home Depot, T.J.Maxx and even Tractor Supply Co., to start stocking pet toys in recent years.” Read more


Marc Lore still feels like he’s running a startup a year after Walmart bought Jet by Zak Stambor. “We’re moving fast, we’re innovating, we’re having fun,” Lore said at the conference in Los Angeles.” Read more


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Macy’s Is Overhauling Its Rewards Program to Win Back Straying Shoppers by Phil Wahba at Fortune. “Macy’s says it will introduce far more features in 2018, including perks that could include exclusive early access to a hot new fragrance or personalized trunk shows. But it wanted to start with a pitch to its most frequent spenders, whom CEO Jeff Gennette told Fortune have not abandoned Macy’s, but are not quite the regular shoppers they were before. “We were seeing customer spending shifts that we needed to stop,” Gennette said in an exclusive interview.” Read more Launches First Campaign of the Holiday Price Wars by Phil Wahba at Fortune. “ said on Monday that customers would get 5% cash back on orders made between Sept. 18 and Oct. 29 and be able to apply the credit to holiday season purchases as of November 13, about when Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales will be in full swing. Customers can accumulate and redeem a credit, called “JetCash,” of up to $50.” Read more


Target Makes First Self-Serve Programmatic Buy at NBCU by John Lafayette at Broadcast & Cable. “This is a watershed moment for advertisers, who have been looking for a way to unlock the power of first-party data in television,” said Kristi Argyilan, SVP of marketing for Target. “Through programmatic ad buying, NBCUniversal is giving us the opportunity to apply better data to our TV decisions and choose the programming that resonates most strongly with our guests.” Read more


Google Pulls YouTube from Amazon’s Echo Show in a Tech Face-Off via Fortune. Read more


Walmart is using Facebook’s enterprise office product, Workplace by Kurt Wagner at Recode. “Walmart is not yet paying for Workplace — Facebook offers a 90-day free trial of the product — but will be a paying customer once the free trial is over, according to a Facebook spokesperson.” Read more


Breach at Sonic Drive-In May Have Impacted Millions of Credit, Debit Cards at Krebs on Security. “The ongoing breach may have led to a fire sale on millions of stolen credit and debit card accounts that are now being peddled in shadowy underground cybercrime stores, KrebsOnSecurity has learned.” Read more


Walmart is #1 destination for makeup at Field Agent. “Walmart (64%) fared best in our survey, followed by rivals Target (48%) and Walgreens (38%). At 35% and 27% respectively, specialty beauty retailers Ulta and Sephora also made strong showings in our survey.” More cosmetic study stats


Target, Toyota to Sponsor NBC’s ‘The Voice’ at Variety. “(Target) will run ads created with NBC that feature former winners of the show – Chris Blue, Sundance Head and Alisan Porter – which will air in commercial time and also in a dedicated hub at The retailer will also run content touting its own brand as well as the show in brief ads that run within a Snapchat show associated with “The Voice.” Read more


Walmart unveils new baby products by Charisse Jones at USA Today. “…its private baby brand, Parent’s Choice, is adding 100 new items and upgrading roughly 100 more…rolling out into January of 2018, and are already for sale in many Walmart stores. The products include eco-conscious wipes, spill-proof sippy cups, a new 53-piece bedding collection and an expanded menu featuring organic baby food. There will also be environmentally friendly products like a “premium’’ diaper with a lining made in part from sustainable wood pulp and baby wipes crafted from recycled T-shirts.” Read more


Dollar General Denied Vision-Impaired Applicant, EEOC Says by Dave Simpson at Law 360. “The EEOC claims that Dollar General violated the Americans with Disabilities Act when it rejected a job applicant with monocular vision, a disability that would not prevent him from working in the small-box discount retailer’s warehouse.” Read more (subs.)


How Walmart Founds Its Footing in the Amazon Era by Jack Neff at Ad Age. “Aspirational products at disruptive prices” was how Scott McCall, senior VP of home and seasonal, described Walmart’s product development effort.” Read more


Judge approves $27 mln Home Depot data breach settlement at Reuters. Read more


With Walmart As Its Owner, Here’s How Is Rebooting Its Business by Sheena Butler-Young at Footwear News. “The new site — unveiled this week — will add trendy brands such as Sam Edelman and Hunter to its assortment. Here, (SVP Alex) Proelss gives FN the scoop on the key facets of the relaunch.” Q&A


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Shake Shack’s head chef found the perfect burger in this grocery store

What Tiffany & Co. Learned About Mobile From Watching Its Competitors

Nurse delivers Target shopper’s baby at store entrance

90% of Americans don’t like to cook

Most Americans support legalized sports betting: Poll

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Tipsheet: Target Embeds Pinterest | Kroger Goes Local | Carol Tome Honored | Disney’s New Store


Bass Pro’s $5 billion deal to buy Cabela’s is complete; combined company’s HQ will be in Springfield, Missouri by Paige Yowell at Omaha World-Herald. “Bass Pro did not respond to questions from The World-Herald about what would happen next with Nebraska workers; Bass Pro has said in the past that it would keep some presence in Nebraska.” Read more


Amazon can’t compete with off-price retailers, JPMorgan says at CNBC. “Here’s the argument for off-price retail: Amazon’s encroachment into the apparel industry more closely resembles a full-price department store, instead of a Ross or TJ Maxx model, JPMorgan’s Boss said.” Read more


Target is adding Pinterest’s visual search tool to its app and website by Sarah Perez at TechCrunch. “The deal, which represents the first time the company has integrated Lens into a retailer’s app, will allow Target shoppers to snap a photo of any product, and then find similar items available for sale at Target. The company says that this feature will initially become available within Target’s registry, but will expand more fully to Target’s app and desktop website in the future. As a result of this deal, Target is also increasing their ad buy significantly with Pinterest.” Read more


Sarah Jessica Parker to host Airbnb Bloomingdale’s trip by Beth J. Harpaz at AP via Seattle Times. “Each participant will get a pair of shoes from her SJP Collection at Bloomingdale’s, with a stop at the department store’s Forty Carrots cafe for frozen yogurt before the guests head off to the ballet. The listing for Parker’s Oct. 6 experience will go live Tuesday morning, with four spaces bookable at $400 each, first come, first served.” Read more


Kroger is now making it a priority to partner with local brands at its supermarket stores across the U.S. at CNBC. “Currently, Kroger sources from thousands of local suppliers, but it’s looking to grow that number, according to Mike Donnelly, Kroger’s executive vice president of merchandising and procurement…Kroger is now inviting local vendors to join its team. Kroger’s new website reads: “Kroger Loves Local” and “We Are Local.” Read more


Disney’s Fix for Retail Slump: Stream Theme-Park Events in Store by Christopher Palmeri at Bloomberg. “Since July, (Disney) has unveiled 4 of 6 planned stores with the new look, which includes a giant video screen in the front. Guests celebrating a birthday can have Donald Duck and friends sing to them, with their photo featured on the screen. Those showing up in the afternoon can sit on seat cushions and watch a live feed of Disneyland’s daily parade down Main Street. Soon, the stores will wheel up a cart where customers can buy cotton candy and mouse ears, just like those sold at the parks.” Read more


Home Depot’s Carol Tomé among Women Who Mean Business honorees to be celebrated Oct. 19 by Jessica Saunders at Atlanta Business Chronicle. Read more


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Alibaba Says It’s About to Build Up a Massive Logistics Network via Fortune. “Alibaba is investing 5.3 billion yuan in Cainiao Smart Logistics Network to boost its stake to 51% from 47%. The investment would value Cainiao, a joint venture of top Chinese logistics firms, at around $20 billion.” Read more


Amazon reportedly invests $28M in India retailer Shoppers Stop by Nat Levy at GeekWire. “The cash infusion will help Shoppers Stop open 20 new stores over the next four years, bringing its footprint to 100 locations in India. Amazon will put experience centers — areas where customers can try out Amazon products — in Shoppers Stop stores.” Read more


How tall is that wall? Lowe’s has a measuring app for that at Fox Business. “The app, called Measured by Lowe’s, uses the smartphone’s camera to measure items in a room. Measurements can be saved for later or shared on social media.” Read more


Did Target aim for $15 minimum wage too soon? by Brittany De Lea at Fox Business. “[Fifteen dollars per hour is] a big movement higher and I think the challenge is we don’t have any idea what the employment markets are going to look like in 2020,” Scott Mushkin, senior retail analyst and managing director at Wolfe Research, told FOX Business. “If I was running a business, I don’t know if I would rush to match that intention. I wouldn’t have even advised Target to make that announcement.” Read more


E-Commerce Mania Spreads To Warehouse Market by Esther Fung at Wall Street Journal. “A well-located last-mile facility “has the functional equivalent of a high-end retail store,” said Hamid Moghadam, chairman and chief executive officer of industrial real-estate investment trust Prologis Inc.” Read more (subs.)


Moms fuming as posh baby chain Giggle gets ready to close for good by Lisa Fickenscher & Julia Marsh at NY Post. “Many of them had recently purchased expensive items from the stores, had their baby registry with it or were sitting on generous gift cards that might be worth nothing now. “I have $1,000 in Giggle gift cards that I don’t know what to do with,” Jessica-Ann Cohen, who is expecting her first child in December, told The Post.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

China Tells Entrepreneurs They Must Put Patriotism Over Profit

Justin Bieber leaves Barneys New York with bags of purchases

Girl, 8, still gets pet hamster after her letter to Petco ends up going to utility Pepco

Amazon Flexes Its Muscle With Tokyo Fashion Week

Coffee sold in California could carry cancer warning labels

Orange juice prices may soon shock you

This Is the Job Where Women Make the Most Compared to Men

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Tipsheet: Sam’s Cuts 700 | Costco China Stores? | Target Min $11 | Aldi Outrage


Analyst predicts Costco will soon build stores in China for the first time by Tae Kim at CNBC. “It appears COST is on the verge of a bigger push into China … last week’s launch of an official flagship store on the ‘Tmall’ platform (with an expanded assortment of furniture, consumer electronics, and wine) suggests COST has broader ambitions for the market,” analyst Peter Benedict wrote in a note to clients Thursday titled “Flying Below the Radar – China Expansion on Tap?” Read more


Sam’s Club is eliminating about 700 back-office positions by Robbie Neiswanger at Arkansas Online. “A spokesman… confirmed the changes Friday, saying club-level accounting employees will be affected by the decision as the retailer automates the work. Money-counting cash recycler machines will now perform those duties.” Read more


Target Raises Minimum Hourly Wage to $11, Commits to $15 Minimum Hourly Wage by End of 2020 Press release


Aerosoles exec to lead Walmart’s online fashion team at Chain Store Age. “Denise Incandela was named Walmart’s senior VP, fashion, effective October 2, 2017. She will lead the fashion businesses for,, and, according to Fashion Network…she will report to Walmart’s chief revenue officer Scott Hilton.” Read more


Department Stores Cling to Power Over Landlords on Mall Upgrades by Sarah Mulholland at Bloomberg. “Known as reciprocal easement agreements, or REAs, the contracts were put in place decades ago, when landlords relied on department stores to lure suburban shoppers. A majority of malls in the U.S. are encumbered by an REA, tying developers’ hands as they try to keep up with rapid shifts in retailing, according to Ryan Rivera, a partner at law firm Hartman Simons & Wood LLP.” Read more


Walmart Will Start Offering Meal Kits on Its Website by December by Cathaleen Chen at The Street. “Essentially, Walmart will be a portal for different meal kit companies to sell their products as a third-party host. The meal kit companies will then pay the retailer a referral fee for driving customers to them, McDevitt explained.” Read more


Bargain-loving bride walks down a shopping aisle to tie the knot at Costco by Emilia Mazza at Daily Mail. “The wedding reception will have a sectioned off area in the store’s food court – and guests will be served hot dogs, pizzas, pies and a cake topped with the Costco logo. ‘Where else can you, honestly serve your guests for under $10?’ she said.” Pics/Read more


Hudson’s Bay Executive Chairman Richard Baker aims for the long shot of taking the company private by Lauren Hirsch at CNBC. “The move comes as activist Land & Buildings Investment Management has urged the company to explore real estate monetization or go private.” Read more


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Wal-Mart director picked for U.S. attorney in Western District of Arkansas by Bill Bowden at Arkansas Online. “Duane A. Kees, known as “Dak,” currently focuses on corporate investigations for the Bentonville-based retailer, according to a news release the White House sent out Friday.” Read more


Rue21 emerges from Chapter 11 bankruptcy by Paul J. Gough at Pittsburgh Business Times. Read more


Aldi outrage as customers line up for hours to buy Mercedes-Benz Ride on Car at Daily Mail. “There was only one of the Mercedes-Benz models in stock, and he snapped it up as a Christmas present for his grandson. ‘I got here first,’ he said. ‘Very happy I got it.'” Pics/Read more


Activist Funds Seek Ouster of Tuesday Morning CEO by David Benoit at Wall Street Journal. “Their candidate to replace Mr. Becker is the former CEO of Signet Jewelers Ltd. and Francesca’s Holdings Corp., Michael W. Barnes.” Read more (subs.)


How Preckwinkle’s pop tax backfired in Chicago by Hal Dardick at Chicago Tribune. “In Philadelphia, a soda tax was applied to distributors, meaning it didn’t show up on store receipts. But here, county officials said the Illinois Department of Revenue ruled the pop tax had to be applied at the cash register. And so store owners opted to list the new tax on receipts, a reminder to consumers that the case of soda they’d purchased now cost an additional $2.88.” Read more


One Surprise Standout for Uber: Food Delivery by Mike Isaac at NY Times. Read more


Casper went to war with a popular mattress reviews site — then financed its takeover by Jason Del Rey at Recode. “In the booming world of online mattress sales, these reviews sites had accumulated massive power — often turning up high in Google search results for general queries like “mattress reviews” or brand-specific ones like “Casper reviews.” And without many showrooms to allow customers to try out these mattresses, online reviews carried even more weight.” Read more


Amazon Web Services Announces the Opening of Data Centers in the Middle East by Early 2019 Press release


Home Depot Data Breach Attys Score $15.3M In Fees by Shayna Posses at Law 360. “The attorneys representing banks and other financial institutions in litigation over Home Depot’s 2014 data breach won a $15.3 million fee award on Friday that represents only a slight reduction to their hotly contested request, as a Georgia federal judge gave his final blessing to a $27.25 million settlement.” Read more (subs.)


Deloitte hit by cyber-attack by Nick Hopkins at The Guardian. “So far, six of Deloitte’s clients have been told their information was “impacted” by the hack. Deloitte’s internal review into the incident is ongoing. The Guardian understands Deloitte discovered the hack in March this year, but it is believed the attackers may have had access to its systems since October or November 2016.” Read more


Walt Disney threatens to pull ESPN, ABC from fourth largest U.S. cable provider at Reuters. Read more


Blue Apron jumps on buy rating from Guggenheim by Sara Salinas at CNBC. “Blue Apron controls approximately 20 percent of the market share for the sector, the note said. “Given their proof of concept and evolving management strategy, we think they can effectively compete and sustain the brand’s leadership position,” Guggenheim said.” Read more


Walmart, Sam’s Club employees raise $5.3 million for Children’s Miracle Network at Talk Business. “Over the past 30 years, the Walmart and Sam’s Club fundraising campaigns have raised nearly $1 billion for pediatric healthcare.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Star-studded night celebrates Johnny Morris, Wonders of Wildlife grand opening

Walmart employees cited with theft after taking advantage of self check-out error

This University Has Produced the Most Powerful Women

Country music legend visits Ace Hardware store for Harvey victims

This huge Kindle promotion with Alibaba shows Amazon’s shrinking ambition in China

E-commerce platforms rush to develop their own one-click ordering tools

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Tipsheet: WSJ Aldi Close-Up | WM Wants Layaway Protection | F.Line -4.5% | Target Expands Restock


Finish Line Q2 comp sales -4.5% “Our second quarter results were shaped by a very promotional marketplace for athletic footwear,” said Sam Sato, Chief Executive Officer of Finish Line.” Press release


WISH is worth more than Sears, Macy’s and JC Penney… combined by Gene Marks at Washington Post via San Diego Tribune. “How about a $1 wristwatch or an $8 sweater? Or better yet, how about paying just the shipping costs-and almost nothing more-for a necklace, a plastic toy or lipstick? All of this is yours if you don’t mind waiting two-to-four weeks. The low prices are due to where the products are coming from: direct from Chinese manufacturers with no middleman.” Read more


…The Wish shopping app is paying more than $30 million to put its logo on Lakers jerseys by Jason Del Rey at Recode. Read more


Wal-Mart seeks price protection on layaway items by Kim Souza at The City Wire. “The retailer is asking suppliers to cover the cost on all inventory when there is a price drop such as year-end closeouts or holiday promotions. For example, if a customer buys a television for $800 and puts that item in layaway ahead of Christmas, but the manufacturer lowers the cost to $725 to help clear inventory by year-end, Wal-Mart will expect the supplier to cover the $75 price differential per item in the retailer’s inventory, which includes layaway.” Read more


Target expands Restock household supply service to 8 additional cities by Catherine Roberts at Star Tribune. “Target is extending its next-day delivery of household essentials to eight more major markets, including New York, Los Angeles and Atlanta. In mid-October, when Target Restock expands to the San Francisco metro, the service will reach more than 70 million people in 11 major markets, or about one-fifth of the U.S. population, the company said Thursday. The service launched in the spring in Minneapolis. Dallas and Denver were added over the summer. Also added Thursday were Chicago, Philadelphia, St. Louis and the Washington, D.C./Baltimore areas.” Read more (tiered subs.)


CVS to cap prescriptions to seven-day supply amid battling opioid epidemic by Leonard Greene at NY Daily News. “The drug store chain will also reach out to doctors about prescriptions that seem to be excessive, and put a cap on daily dosages.” Read more


**A Message from Headache Hat: Wearable Ice Pack = Hands-Free Migraine Fighter. High-tech stretch material is form fitting, soft and stylish. Contains 24 real ice cubes coated in thin plastic. Wrap around your head and enjoy 2 hours of cold ice. Cubes individually moveable to target pain points. No more lukewarm gel packs! Named a top product by The Migraine World Summit. See it here now. Request sample @


This is Amazon’s newest food deal by Jade Scipionia at Fox Business. “The company announced Friday that it has a new partnership with New York-based startup Olo to help streamline food ordering as the retailer continues to build its Amazon Restaurants brand, an exclusive food delivery platform for its Prime members. Olo is one of the leading digital food ordering services used by over 180 national brands.” Read more


Frank Blake will be inducted into Junior Achievement’s Atlanta Business Hall of Fame on Feb. 24, 2018 by Maria Saporta at Atlanta Business Chronicle Subscription required


How Aldi Plans to Conquer America: Limit Choice by Zeke Turner at Wall Street Journal. “Even in Germany, not much is known about how Aldi operates. It does little media advertising, doesn’t publish financial statements, and its top executives don’t give interviews. The Wall Street Journal figured out Aldi’s idiosyncratic playbook through internal documents, the company’s rare public filings, and interviews with past and present managers.” Read more (subs.)


Office Depot hires new Chief Legal Officer by Emon Reiser at South Florida Business Journal. “David Bleisch will be the new chief legal officer at Office Depot. He’s the second c-suite executive the retailer has recently hired from ADT Corp.” Read more


Walmart partners with smart lock maker August to test in-home delivery of packages and groceries by Sarah Perez at TechCrunch. “…it will begin testing a new service that will allow customers with August smart home devices, like the August doorbell and security cameras, to have their packages delivered inside their home instead of left on the doorstep…it will soon start this test in the Silicon Valley area with select customers who have opted into to try the new service.” Read more


L.L.Bean Made a Clever Newspaper Ad That You Can Only Read Outdoors by Tim Nudd at Adweek. “The brand’s new tagline, “Be an Outsider,” appears in large lettering below, along with an additional entreaty: “No, seriously. Take this outside.”…The ad was made with something called photochromic ink, which is colorless indoors but turns different colors when exposed to ultraviolet light, usually from the sun or a black light.” Read more


Nestlé Makes Billions Bottling Water It Pays Nearly Nothing For by Caroline Winter at Bloomberg. “The Michigan operation is only one small part of Nestlé, the world’s largest food and beverage company. But it illuminates how Nestlé has come to dominate a controversial industry, spring by spring, often going into economically depressed municipalities with the promise of jobs and new infrastructure in exchange for tax breaks and access to a resource that’s scarce for millions.” Read more (registration required)


Amazon has a low-key start-up, Amazon Live, focused on ways to make purchases through interactive videos at CNBC. “The company announced a hiring blitz in New York on Thursday. One job posting was for a user experience designer for “Amazon Live,” a start-up that “leverages interactive streaming video to create new shopping experiences for customers,” according to the job posting.” Read more


CDC Issues New Mosquito Warning by Ian Johnston at Independent. “In a paper published in the Journal of Medical Entomology, it revealed maps showing areas where the habitat was suitable for two particular species of mosquito, Aedes aegypti or Aedes albopictus to survive. A study found 71 per cent of counties in the 48 contiguous states were suitable for aegypti and 75 per cent could support albopictus.” Read more


Pinterest opens up more than 5,000 interests for advertiser targeting through its Taste Graph by Matthew Lynley at TechCrunch. Read more


Retail shouldn’t ditch the store because millennials love it at CNBC. “Seventy-one percent of millennials are visiting multiple stores in search of bargains, compared with 57 percent of baby boomers, according to First Insight.” Read more


Amazon to Create 2,000 Jobs in New Manhattan Office by Natalie Wong at Bloomberg. Read more


Report: Wal-Mart U.S. e-commerce posted impressive sales growth numbers through the first half of this year with gross merchandise value (GMV) of U.S. sales rising 69% in the first quarter and 67% in the second quarter over the prior-year periods by Kim Souza at The City Wire. Read more


Tiffany names Roger Farah as Chairman Press release


Trix cereal is bringing back artificial colors because customers complained at CNBC. “…customers have complained, with one reportedly calling the new product “basically a salad,” the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday. Another said she liked the way the artificial colors and high-fructose corn syrup look and taste, the report said.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

T-Mobile, Sprint close to agreeing deal terms – sources

Experian Site Can Give Anyone Your Credit Freeze PIN

Bill Murray’s Golf Company Adds Cubs Owner, Celebs as Investors

Mastermind Toys eyes Quebec expansion as Toys ‘R’ Us flounders

Gatorade banned and fined $300k for bad-mouthing water

Amazon adds a few new Star Trek skills to AI assistant’s repertoire

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Tipsheet: Most Powerful Women | Amazon Eyes PBMs | Couche-Tard Wants Weed


Amazon is taking on the drug supply chain by Christina Farr at CNBC. “Citing an anonymous analyst, the report states that Amazon may “indeed be in conversations with some middle-market PBMs now, in an effort to get into various contract arrangements.” That suggests that Amazon is a “bigger threat” than many expect, but that it won’t be right away. Leerink estimates that it will take about 18 to 24 months for Amazon to get pharmacy licenses in all 50 states.” Read more


Fortune’s 2017 Most Powerful Women in Business List Full list


Target rolls out Bluetooth beacon technology in stores to power new indoor maps in its app by Sarah Perez at TechCrunch. “Instead of simply showing a static map, or noting the aisle number where a product can be found, the new Target application will actually show your own location on the map, as indicated by a blinking dot. As you move through the store, your location will update, too – similar to how the blue dot appears on Google Maps, for example.” Read more


Albertsons buys meal kit company Plated at CNBC. “This transaction is the latest example of Albertsons meeting our customers wherever and however they like to shop,” said Bob Miller, chairman and CEO of Albertsons.” Read more


Couche-Tard says it wants to sell marijuana in its Quebec c-stores via Financial Post. “Couche-Tard even hired a lobbyist to work on ensuring it is involved in the cannabis-distribution system Quebec will eventually set up, but Bouchard says the provincial government has given the company the cold shoulder.” Read more


The expected relaxing of foreign gun sale rules could increase sales by as much as 20% at Forbes. Read more


Amazon preps for a heated race in India as Diwali holiday sales kick off by Saritha Rai at Bloomberg via Seattle Times. “Diwali is the time when annual bonuses are paid in India, and families do their heaviest shopping. The festival extends over several days, starting Oct. 17 this year. “Amazon and Flipkart are more evenly matched today than ever before and it’s a lot tougher to predict who’ll be the winner in this year’s peak selling season,” said Mrigank Gutgutia.” Read more


Google unveils multimillion-dollar Austin office by Will Anderson at Austin Business Journal. 21 pics/Read more


**A message from Pirola – Italian made, designer-inspired ironing boards add spice to any home. Exclusively made in Italy for 45 years, these high-quality boards bring design and excitement to the category. Featuring the Arco board from the Design Line and the Luna board from the Plus Line. Custom colors and designs available. Website | Request samples at Italy to U.S. connection


A toy story: Geppetto’s thrives in the retail jungle by Rob Nikolewski at San Diego Union-Tribune. “While local customers may be long familiar with the chain that has grown to include nine stores across San Diego County, they may not know Geppetto’s has become the largest independent toy retailer in the U.S.” Read more


American Eagle Outfitters to expand in India by Stacey Federof at Pittsburgh Business Times. “The first stores are planned for Mumbai and Delhi…Stores in the U.K. were closed in July after three years in the market.” Read more


Amazon working on Alexa smart glasses with bone-induction audio by Todd Bishop at GeekWire. Read more


CVS amps up its campaign against tobacco at colleges by Chris Isidore at CNN. “CVS’s charitable foundation said it will issues grants to 126 colleges and universities to help them ban smoking on campus. The foundation is donating a total of $1.2 million, or about $10,000 a school.” Read more


Amazon Puts Whole Foods on Fast Track to Conventional Supermarket by Heather Haddon & Annie Gasparro at Wall Street Journal. “Under the changes planned to begin in April, Whole Foods’ 470 locations will no longer allow brand representatives to promote their products or check to make sure they are stocked and displayed correctly.” Read more (subs.)


Kroger Named One of the Healthiest 100 Workplaces in America Press release


As retailers close, thrift stores and consignment reach customers on Facebook, Instagram by Rachel Layne at USA Today via CNBC. “Supply doesn’t seem to be running out. The average American woman doesn’t wear 60% of items in her closet, or about $220 billion in potential inventory, according to Fung Global Retail Tech, a consulting firm.” Read more


Amazon ‘reviewing’ its website after suggesting bomb-making ingredients, report says by Aime Tsang at NY Times via Toronto Star. “Amazon said on Wednesday that it was reviewing its website after a British television report said the online retail giant’s algorithms were automatically suggesting bomb-making ingredients that were “Frequently bought together.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Pet parrot uses voice-controlled gadget to place order with Amazon

Suspect in Starbucks robbery may sue man who stopped him

Wall Street’s Best-Kept Secret Is a 72-Year-Old Russian Chess Expert

This Year’s Extreme Weather Will Have a Serious Effect on Global Wine

Microsoft opens mysterious office in small town a ferry ride away from Seattle

Pointy, a startup that lets local retailers easily put stock online with a simple gadget, raises​ ​$6M

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Tipsheet: Costco Kimchi | Bed/Bath -2.6% | Holiday +4.5% | Wgreen CEO Iview


Bed Bath & Beyond Q2 comp sales -2.6% “Comparable sales from customer-facing digital channels continued to have strong growth in excess of 20% for the 13th consecutive quarter, while comparable sales from stores declined in the mid-single-digit percentage range.” Press release


Early forecast calls for stronger holiday season for retailers at CNBC. “Deloitte said it expects retailers to see holiday sales growth of as much as 4.5 percent. Last year, total sales for the season climbed 3.6 percent, matching results in 2015.” Read more


Walgreens gets regulatory nod for slimmed-down Rite Aid deal at Reuters. “Walgreens will acquire 1,932 Rite Aid stores, 254 fewer than it announced in July, in areas where competition between the two chains is not significant.” Read more | Press release


COSTCO KIMCHI – Costco stores in South Korea offer chopped onions for hot dogs. Koreans have a different idea by Matt Stiles at LA Times. “Consumption methods vary by customer. Some prefer a large, clean mound of onions, with sauces placed in careful circles on the side. Some decorate the onions with sauce. Others still mix it all together into a red-orange mass. Scores of these customers’ creations have been posted on social media such as Instagram. There’s even a mini-documentary about the practice.” Read more


Walmart, Target join call for ‘Dreamer’ legislation at CNBC. “Wal-Mart, Target and PepsiCo on Wednesday joined an expanded group of nearly 800 companies calling in a letter for U.S. legislation to protect immigrants brought into the country illegally by their parents from deportation, according to organizer” Read more


Amazon Emails Customers With Fake Baby News by Jeff John Roberts at Fortune. “Millions of Amazon customers received a surprise email on Tuesday with the good news that a baby gift was on the way. Alas, it turned out there was no gift—and in most cases no baby either. In one of the weirder tech glitches in recent memory, Amazon’s automated email servers appears to have gone off the rails and spammed many of the company’s customers with a message titled “A gift from your registry.” Read more


Walmart to give more hours to current staff this holiday season at Fox Business. “Walmart Stores said on Wednesday it would not hire temporary workers this holiday season and would instead offer the extra hours to its current employees. This is in sharp contrast to the plans of other retailers such as Target Corp and Macy’s Inc.” Read more


**A message from Hot Shot – There’s no place like home. And when you rule the roost, you do it all… keep the peace, dry the tears, mop up the messes – even squash the spiders. When bugs cross your threshold, count on Hot Shot® brand for practical, easy-to-use, effective home insect solutions that take care of the creepy-crawlies for you – without breaking the bank. Save the Day. Facebook page


THRILLER – Why Michael Jackson Is Going to Be Even Bigger This Halloween at Bloomberg. “We’re planting the Halloween flag,” said John Branca, the Los Angeles attorney who serves as co-executor of the singer’s estate, along with former music industry executive John McClain. “Michael loved Halloween!” Read more


DON’T LET IT END – Toys ‘R’ Us Will Live Because Mattel and Hasbro Can’t Let It Die at Bloomberg. “Oh my God, they are very important, and people don’t understand,”  Isaac Larian, founder and chief executive officer of MGA, said of the toy chain. “That’s the only place where kids can go and just buy toys. There is no toy business without Toys ‘R’ Us.” Read more


Best Buy CEO sees ‘growth opportunities’ ahead, Wall Street isn’t buying it by Courtney Reagan at CNBC. “Additionally Tuesday, Best Buy announced it’s testing a service it calls Assured Living in Minneapolis and Denver, which uses technology to help loved ones check in on the safety and well-being of aging family members.” Read more


Amazon turns down cactus gift from Arizona and donates 21-foot-tall saguaro to Desert Museum by Kurt Schlosser at GeekWire. “Amazon turned down a 21-foot-tall saguaro cactus on Tuesday that was being sent to CEO Jeff Bezos as an incentive to consider Tucson, Ariz., as a possible location for the tech giant’s second headquarters.” Pics/Read more


HBR: Consumers Prefer Products with Imperfections Because They Feel More Unique “Consumers were more likely to choose the chocolate than extra money when they learned that the chocolate was made by mistake rather than made intentionally…consumer attraction to products made by mistake is not just limited to cases in which a mistake enhances the product.” Read more


Stefano Pessina, CEO at Walgreens Boots Alliance, talks with Bloomberg 3:39 video


Canadian Tire pledges $50 million toward accessible sports and playgrounds at Toronto Star. “The pep rally-style announcement was made Tuesday at the fully accessible Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre with the likes of Wayne Gretzky, Paralympian Rick Hansen and Blue Jays centre-fielder Kevin Pillar in attendance.” Read more


Trump administration prepares to ease export rules for U.S. guns at Reuters. “Aides to President Donald Trump are completing a plan to shift oversight of international non-military firearms sales from the State Department to the Commerce Department, four officials told Reuters.” Read more


General Mills shares fall as profit misses on weak yogurt, cereal sales at Fox Business. “Net sales in its U.S. cereal operating unit fell 7 percent, reflecting a reduction in customer inventory levels among other things.” Read more


Supermarket offers ‘finger vein’ payment in worldwide first at The Telegraph. “Customers at the Costcutter store, at Brunel University in London, can now pay using their unique vein pattern to identify themselves. The firm behind the technology, Sthaler, has said it is in “serious talks” with other major UK supermarkets to adopt hi-tech finger vein scanners at pay points across thousands of stores.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Walmart Is Eliminating Overnight Stocker Jobs At Hundreds Of Stores

Finland’s Welfare State Has a Massive Baby Problem

Johnson & Johnson acquires subscription-based contact lens startup

You’ve Got to See What These Two Teen Sisterpreneurs Are Selling at Target

Americans are tired of chicken, eating more beef and fish: Cargill CEO

New FedEx shipping rates will kick in Jan. 1, increasing almost 5%

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