Tipsheet: Sam’s New Layout Center | Toy Shortage? | WM NYC Deliv Chief Out


Early Amazon investor John Doerr is convinced Jeff Bezos will roll out Prime Health at CNBC. Read more


Sam’s Club planning to build corporate childcare facility by Paul Gatling at Talk Business. “Sam’s Club wants to build its development on land it owns at 2300 S.E. S St…expected to be about 17,500 square feet and will hold about 170 children including infants, toddlers, 2-year-olds, pre-K and kindergarten prep.” Read more


…Sam’s Club new layout center opened yesterday “The new building replaces the existing 134,000-square-foot layout center in Springdale, inside a former Sam’s Club store…Shelley Latham, a senior merchant in the toy category, said she spends about 30% of her time at the Springdale layout center. “Sixty-five hours a year is saved just by having the new building across the street,” she said…“This is a game changer for us.” Read more


Iceberg lettuce prices soar as much as 168% after E. coli outbreak takes romaine off shelves at CNBC. Read more


Holiday’s hot toys already in short supply at big-box retailers by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “The big problem, according to industry insiders, is that Walmart, Target and Amazon lack both the aisle space and the appetite for risk that would be needed to fill US demand for toys this year…Adrienne Appell, a spokeswoman for the Toy Industry Association: “Many of them didn’t anticipate that items would go as quickly as they have already.” Read more


Jim Cramer sits down with Dollar Tree President and CEO Gary Philbin Video


Walmart’s NYC Delivery Push Suffers Loss of Divison Chief by Matthew Boyle at Bloomberg. “Jesse Kaplan, who sold his last-mile delivery startup to Walmart last year, “has decided this was a natural point for him to step down,” Alyssa Ciambriello, spokeswoman for Walmart unit Jet, said in an emailed statement. Chief Operating Officer Jackson Fratesi will now lead Parcel and its more than 200 employees, she said.” Tiered subs.


CVS Health president Larry Merlo discusses CVS’ acquisition of Aetna at CNBC. Video

…Interviewer calls Merlo out over 3 feet long receipts Video


Neiman Marcus Talks With Debt Holders End in Stalemate by Katherine Doherty at Bloomberg. “Initial talks between Neiman Marcus Group Inc. and its debt holders are at a standstill over the fate of one of its most promising assets, MyTheresa, according to people familiar with the matter. The retailer and some of its creditors failed to agree on the early reworking of Neiman’s $4.7 billion debt load.” Tiered subs. | WSJ article (subs.)


**A message from the 3-Foot Circle – The golf training aid that gets you down in two shots from the edge of the green. Video/Info


Mental health clinic opens inside a Walmart in Texas at NBC Today. Video/Read more


White House to Hold Roundtable With Tech Executives next Thursday at Wall Street Journal. “Executives expected to participate include Microsoft Corp. Chief Executive Satya Nadella, Google Chief Executive Sundar Pichai, OracleCorp. co-Chief Executive Safra Catz, Qualcomm Inc. Chief Executive Steve Mollenkopf and others…” WSJ subs.


Nashville reverses course, releases original Amazon incentives by Sandy Mazza at The Tennessean. “Earlier this month, Mayor David Briley’s office declined to release the original HQ2 offer, signed by Barry in September 2017. But after repeated requests from the community, Briley “decided in this instance to provide it,” according to a statement released to the media.” Incentive details


America’s Top 50 Women In Tech at Forbes. List


J. Crew scraps budget line; Amazon deal in doubt by Khadeeja Safdar at MarketWatch. “J.Crew Group Inc. will discontinue its budget clothing line called Mercantile and shut down the newly launched Nevereven brand…The elimination of Mercantile calls into question J.Crew’s deal with Inc., which currently sells only Mercantile products.” Read more


AT&T details plans for Netflix-style streaming service at NBC Today. Read more


NOT LEAVING – Hundreds of Family Dollar workers are opting not to move to Dollar Tree’s HQ in Virginia by Katherine Peralta at Charlotte Observer. “About 210 Family Dollar employees in Matthews have agreed to move to Dollar Tree’s headquarters in Chesapeake, Va., representing approximately 30 percent of the local workers who were offered to do so, Dollar Tree said.” Tiered subs.


Starbucks says it will start blocking porn in 2019 at NY Post. Read more


Netflix, Disney or Amazon: Who Wins the War for Streaming in India? at Hollywood Reporter. Read more


Why GameStop sold its AT&T wireless stores and lowered its full-year forecast by Maria Halkias at Dallas News. “GameStop cut its full-year profit forecast Thursday saying sales of pre-owned merchandise fell 13.4 percent and it took a charge to lower the value of the company.” Tiered subs. | Press release


Report: Jack in the Box courting potential buyers by Mike Freeman at San Diego Tribune. Read more


Target gives shoppers advance notice of its annual 10% off gift cards by John Ewoldt at Star Tribune. “…the sale starts and ends Sunday, Dec. 2 in stores and on…minimum gift card purchase is $10 and the maximum purchase is $300.” Tiered subs.


“Amazon Teen” is targeting kids on Snapchat by Jeff Beer at Fast Company. Read more


‘Wreck-It Ralph’ Gives eBay Starring Role – For Free by Adrianne Pasquarelli at Ad Age. “I would call this a Nirvana moment for marketers,” says Suzy Deering, chief marketing officer of San Jose-based eBay.” Tiered subs.


Tipsheet Extra Stories

SXSW releases list of 250 artists playing 2019 festival

CDC warns of new tick species capable of spreading diseases to humans

Targeted ads are ramping up on cable via your smart TV

Dems demand info on law enforcement’s use of Amazon facial recognition tool

Alexa can now connect to Big Mouth Billy Bass

Woman messaged online date only because he had Costco in his profile

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Tipsheet: D.Tree +1% | Amazon Sneaks Baby Ads | Inside Sam’s Club Now | WM Prints Teen’s #


Dollar Tree Enterprise comp sales +1.0%:  Family Dollar -0.4% / Dollar Tree +2.3% Press release


Express Q3 comp sales flat Press release


Kirkland’s Q3 comp sales +1.4% Press release


SNEAKY – Amazon is sneaking ads into baby registries at Fast Company. “And the ads look so similar to actual products requested by parents that many of them have ended up buying the products that Amazon put on their list…The Wall Street Journal investigated the problem and found that Amazon charges $500,000 for registry ad placements, and sells three of them every quarter.Read more | WSJ article (subs.)


Abercrombie & Fitch Q3 comp sales +3.0% Press release


…Abercrombie & Fitch names Kristin Scott as President, Global Brands – Currently serving as Brand President of Hollister Press release


Cash-Strapped Millennials Are Turning to Installment Plans to Pay for T-Shirts and Jeans by Olga Kharif at Bloomberg. “Afterpay Touch Group Ltd. caught on quickly with Australian millennials, many of whom abandoned credit cards after the 2008 recession…The company charges no interest, instead collecting a fee of as much as 6 percent of a sale from the retailer. Afterpay works with 20,000 merchants globally—including 1,000 now online in the U.S. where the company has signed up Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie and Free People.” Tiered subs.


Dick’s Sporting Goods is considering taking hunting supplies off its shelves in more of its 732 stores across the US at Daily Mail. Read more


…Firearms Industry Appears Stuck in the Doldrums – In October, slightly more than a million background checks of prospective firearms buyers were conducted…That’s 11.2 percent fewer checks than in the same month a year earlier by Tiffany Hsu at New York Times. Tiered subs.


BJ’s CEO, Kroger CEO & Nordstrom President headline speaker lineup at NRF 2019 Press release


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Walgreens CEO Says Humana Relationship Could Take Many Forms by Bruce Japsen at Forbes. “Speaking at the Forbes Healthcare Summit in New York Wednesday evening, Walgreens executive vice chairman & CEO Stefano Pessina said…Walgreens and Humana are evaluating whether expansion will occur through a “joint venture, a commercial agreement” or another form of partnership. “You don’t have to go as far as full integration” with Humana, Pessina said.” Read more


Amazon’s deal with WeWork to test Alexa in the workplace has been paused, but internal Amazon pilot sees quick adoption at CNBC. Read more


4.8 OUT OF 5 STARS – Inside Look at The Sam’s Club NOW Cashier-Less Experience in Dallas by Field Agent.  Videos/Data


How keeping Bonobos separate helps Walmart build online-only brands by Suman Bhattacharyya at Digiday. “On Cyber Monday at Bonobos’ New York City headquarters, over 100 staff members from across the company gather in the open-concept space to eat, drink and answer customer phone calls and chat conversations in a holiday shopping tradition the company calls “Ninjapalooza.” Though the company has 30 “Ninjas,” or customer service representatives, on staff, around 70 volunteers from other areas of company pitch in to deal with the seasonal rush.” Read more


Ace Hardware Q3 comp sales +1.8% Press release


Patagonia gives GOP tax windfall to environmental groups at NY Daily News. “Based on last year’s irresponsible tax cut, Patagonia will owe less in taxes this year — $10 million less, in fact,” Patagonia CEO Rose Marcario wrote…”…Our home planet needs it more than we do.” Read more


Amazon’s treatment of sellers comes under scrutiny in Germany at Reuters. Read more


Chiefs’ QB Mahomes surprises youth football team at Dick’s by Lynn Worth at Kansas City Star. “Adrion Roberson, the CEO and co-founder of KC United Youth Sports and Education Initiative had to fight back tears starting to form in his eyes. “Most of the time where we’re from, kids don’t get this, for kids who come from hard places to see that people care about them,” Roberson said between sniffles and working around a catch in his throat before trailing off.” Read more


Sheetz names new President and COO – Travis Sheetz will be the first COO in Sheetz history Press release


Amazon Makes Inroads Selling Medical Supplies to the Sick by Melanie Evans at Wall Street Journal. “The app, developed by a separate company called Xealth Inc., enables doctors to choose which supplies to recommend, then email the list of products to a patient. The email directs the patient to a website with photos of recommended products, descriptions and links for purchasing on Amazon.” WSJ subs.


Guess plunges after missing on earnings at CNBC. Read more


Payless Opened a Fake Luxury Store With $600 Shoes by Emily Price at Fortune. “The retailer recently took over a former Armani store, stocked it with Payless merchandise, and then invited fashion influencers…Influencers who attended the party paid between $200 and $600 for Payless shoes that are traditionally priced between $20-40, and many of the guests commented on how their purchases were “sophisticated” or “made with high-quality materials.” Read more


Altria is reportedly in talks to take a minority stake in Juul at CNBC. Read more


It’s now cheaper to order Whole Foods delivery on Instacart than on Amazon by Mary Hanbury at Business Insider. “Instacart is quietly slashing its prices. The company has cut its annual Instacart Express membership fee from $149 to $99. Non-Express delivery charges have been slashed from $5.99 to $3.99. It has also removed the 5% service fee for its Express members.” Read more


Walmart store accidentally prints teen’s phone number on all of its signs for store pickup by Bryna Zumer at Fox Baltimore. Pics/Video


SMELLY SITUATION – Woman passes gas at Dollar General store, then pulls knife on an offended customer by Howard Cohen at Miami Herald. “…the customer standing next to her, got into a verbal dispute “in reference to the defendant farting loudly,” according to the affidavit. Wilson allegedly pulled a small “lock back knife” from her purse, “opened the knife and told the victim she was going to ‘gut’ him,” the police report said.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

16 U.S. Postal workers took bribes to deliver cocaine in Atlanta

Limited-edition Selena bags return to H-E-B on Dec. 6

Jimmy Fallon & Home Depot Surprise a Family Affected by Two Hurricanes

Publix to close Greenwise store in Palm Beach Gardens

Santa Rosa police disband reclaimed homeless camp behind Dollar Tree store

Newspaper battles Ex-Pilot Flying J President Mark Hazelwood over sealed records

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Tipsheet: Burlington Beats | Tiffany Misses | Chico’s Craters


Burlington Q3 comp sales +4.4% Press release


…Burlington Earnings Growth Crush Estimates; Stock Soars at Investor’s Business Daily. Read more


Tiffany Q3 worldwide net sales +4.0% Press release


…Tiffany misses sales estimates on weak spending by Chinese tourists at Reuters. “Tiffany’s comparable-store sales, excluding the impact of currency changes, rose 3 percent, while analysts on average were expecting a rise of 5.3 percent, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.” Read more


Walmart’s cyber-savvy execs Andy Dunn and Barbara Messing help lead the way in digital by David Gianatasio at Adweek. “This absolutely is a startup,” Dunn says. “It sounds odd for a Fortune 1 company, but we’re operating at a level of scrappiness and speed that reminds me exactly of the early days of building Bonobos.” Tiered subs


Chico’s brand president out / Q3 comp sales -6.8% Press release


California farmers frustrated after tainted romaine tied to Central Coast by John Woolfolk & Hannah Hagemann at Mercury News. “A dozen years ago, the region was rocked by an outbreak of E. coli illness from spinach that sickened more than 200 people across the country, three of whom died. Health officials eventually tied the outbreak to a single grower, Salinas-based Mission Organics.” Tiered subs. 


Alimentation Couche-Tard Q2 comp sales: +5.1% Canada / +4.4% U.S. / +4.6% Europe at Toronto Star. Read more


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American Retailers Squeeze Chinese Suppliers as Tariffs Start to Hurt by Natasha Kahn & Yifan Wang at Wall Street Journal. “Amazon cut back purchases and orders for certain of its private-label products where the tariffs make it no longer profitable to offer those goods to customers at sub-competitor prices, according to a person familiar with the matter…Walmart CFO Brett Biggs: “If we get tariffs as discussed in January prices are going to go up.” WSJ subs.


J.Jill: Q3 comp sales +1.0%  CFO to depart 4/30/19


7-Eleven is first c-store in Canada to accept Alipay and WeChat at Vancouver Sun. “65% of Chinese use mobile payment platforms while travelling overseas.” Read more


Amazon unveils new service to mine and decode medical records using artificial intelligence by Clare McGrane at GeekWire. “Unveiled Tuesday during Amazon Web Services’ re:Invent conference, Amazon Comprehend Medical has already been tested with partners including Seattle’s Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and pharmaceutical giant Roche.” Read more


Williams-Sonoma Inc. coming to India at Furniture Today. Read more


Sears secures court approval for an additional $350 million loan at CNBC. Read more


Celebrities Like Kylie Jenner Are Upending the $52 Billion Beauty Industry by Jaewon Kang at The Wall Street Journal. “While decades-old brands have focused on selling popular items through traditional retailers, the cadre of upstarts are engaging shoppers online and rolling out products ranging from gold-shade lip gloss to cannabis oil-infused mascara.” WSJ subs.


Sportsman’s Warehouse Q3 comp sales -0.5% Press release


Amazon Flex driver tosses package out car window like a newspaper by John Matarese at WPTV. “Her security camera shows her husband almost running over a delivery, that was laying in the driveway. “He said he found a package in the middle of the driveway.  He found it strange,” she said.” Video/Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

FDA warns men to avoid Rhino sexual enhancement pills

34,000 people have applied for student loan forgiveness. 26 have been approved

Man took a break from work to rob a Walgreens store

Target’s new retail brand experience team finishes first project

Land O’Lakes CEO Beth Ford has one rule about email

Conde Nast CEO to Step Down, Company to Combine U.S. and Int’l Units

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Tipsheet: Cyber Mon +19.3% | SCOTUS Skeptical of Apple | CVS/Aetna Approved


Cyber Monday sales break a record, with $7.9 billion spent online: Adobe at CNBC. “…an increase of 19.3 percent from a year ago…Mobile transactions by themselves grew 55.6 percent Cyber Monday compared with last year to reach $2.2 billion in sales.” Read more


…Cyber Monday was Amazon’s single biggest shopping day in the company’s history at Fast Company. Read more


CVS, Aetna win final state approval for their merger at CNBC. “…now expect the deal to close “on or about” Nov. 28, the companies said Monday in regulatory filings. The companies had been expecting to finalize the merger by Thanksgiving. However, a handful of the 28 states CVS and Aetna needed approval from opposed the combination.” Read more


…CVS-Aetna merger approved by New York regulators by Josh Kosman & Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “…the list of conditions didn’t include what many critics were calling for: that Aetna participate in the Affordable Care Act and that the combined company support state legislation to license the pharmacy benefit managers, or PBMs, that negotiate drug prices for patients.” Read more


The U.S. Housing Boom Is Coming to an End, Starting in Dallas by Laura Kusisto at Wall Street Journal. “In contrast, supply is tight in the small slice of the market where homes are still priced below $200,000. Real-estate agents say it is becoming tougher to persuade buyers to move and give up their sub-4% mortgage rates—which they fear they won’t see again.” WSJ subs.


Amazon makes available for free the same machine learning courses that it uses to train its own engineers by Connie Loizos at TechCrunch. “…there are more than 45 hours across 30 different courses that developers, data scientists, data platform engineers and business professionals can take gratis.” Read more


Apple to host free coding sessions at stores by Sarah Perez at TechCrunch. “Apple also introduced a new Swift Coding  Club kit for teachers and students that provides the materials needed for them to start their own coding clubs at school. This kit is designed for students ages 8 and up.” Read more


Hibbett Sports Q3 comp sales +0.1% Press release


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Amazon, With Little Fanfare, Emerges as an Advertising Giant by Lara O’Reilly & Laura Stevens at Wall Street Journal. “The company’s frugal culture has been something of a mismatch for the glitzy sales events and long lunches that grease business deals on Madison Avenue…“I don’t think you will ever see the [Amazon] yacht at Cannes, unfortunately,” said Will Margaritis, lead Amazon consultant at advertising group Dentsu Aegis Network.” WSJ subs.


The Buckle Q3 comp sales -1.4% Press release


Amazon wants brands to advertise Alexa voice shopping — essentially for free by Rani Molla at Recode. “In (Amazon’s) perspective, it would be great for Amazon if all the holiday ads this year are for voice shopping,” Goldberg said. “The effect is that consumers will think voice shopping has arrived.” Read more


Petco Names Genevieve Kelly as Chief Legal Officer Press release


Jack Ma Confirmed as Chinese Communist Party Member at Bloomberg. Tiered subs.


Supreme Court appears skeptical of Apple’s arguments in App Store monopoly case at CNBC. “…in a case that could permit iPhone owners to move forward with an antitrust suit against the company for allegedly inflating the prices in its App Store. That lawsuit could disrupt the electronic giant’s mobile software sales ecosystem, and potentially hit the company with hundreds of millions of dollars in penalties.” Read more


H&M to close down its struggling Cheap Monday brand at Reuters. Read more


Why Trump slapping a 10% tariff on iPhones would come at an awful time for Apple by Brian Sozzi at Yahoo Finance. Read more


Christmas tree shortage hits South Florida by Taylor Dolven at Miami Herald. “Think of it as a hangover from the Great Recession. Even though it struck a full decade ago, the 2008 downturn and a concurrent glut of yuletide firs and spruces drove many growers out of business. The supply is now tight.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Amazon veteran leaves after 20 years to help take stock-trading startup public

Boy left alone in JCPenney on Black Friday now staying with aunt

Man arrested after stealing dog kennel from PetSmart at gunpoint

Romaine lettuce from California linked to E. coli outbreak

Amazon set to close its London-based delivery service 

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Tipsheet: B.Fri Online +23.6% | C.Mon +18%? | Lowe’s Maintenance


Cyber Monday to test limits of retailers’ websites as shoppers scour deals at Reuters. “…expected to be the largest U.S. online shopping day in history, yielding $7.8 billion in sales or 17.6 percent growth over last year, according to Adobe Analytics.” Read more


Lowe’s, J.Crew, Lululemon, Walmart, and Ulta experienced problems with their websites crashing on Black Friday at Business Insider. “Lowe’s apologized to customers on Twitter and temporarily shut down the site. It was relaunched on Friday afternoon around 2.30 p.m. ET.” Read more


Airbnb hires Amazon VP Dave Stephenson as CFO ahead of its anticipated IPO in 2019 at CNBC. “Stephenson spent 17 years as Amazon, most recently as VP and CFO of Amazon’s Worldwide Consumer Organization, responsible for all global website sales.” Read more


Taxes may be a bigger part of online shopping this season by Jessica Gresko at AP. “California, Texas, New York and Florida, do not yet have similar collection requirements in place. As a result, consumers shopping online from those states and others that have yet to act may not be charged sales tax on some websites for a little longer.” Read more


Kohl’s hits record sales day online on Thanksgiving, selling 60 Instant Pots per minute at CNBC. “CEO Michelle Gass…said 80 percent of traffic online came from mobile devices…(selling) 40 Fitbit devices per minute. She said cozy items like a “tranquility blanket” were popular, in addition to athletic apparel.” Read more


Black Friday pulled in a record $6.22 billion in online sales: Adobe Analytics at CNBC. “Online sales Black Friday jumped 23.6 percent from a year ago…first day in history to see more than $2 billion in sales stemming from smartphones…Cyber Monday sales online are expected to set a new record of $7.8 billion, up nearly 18 percent from last year.” Read more


Over a third of all Black Friday web sales were made on smartphones by Carl Campanile at NY Post. “More than $2 billion of Black Friday sales were done on smartphones this year — blowing past a $1.4 billion record set by last year’s Cyber Monday shoppers, according to an Adobe Analytics report.” Read more


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Lord & Taylor prepares to say goodbye to Fifth Avenue by Verena Dobnik at AP. “Lord & Taylor plans to close its longtime flagship in January after one last blowout sale. Next year, the 11-story, Italian Renaissance-style building covering a whole city block will be taken over by WeWork, the workspace leasing company.” Read more


Vegas Is Now Home to the ‘World’s Biggest’ Weed Store by Craig Giammona. “Housed in a 40,000-square-foot (3,700-square-meter) building—with retail space, back offices and room for weed cultivation—the store opened earlier this month just off the Strip in the shadow of the Palazzo, Treasure Island and the Wynn.” Tiered subs.


UPS’s Christmas Wish: A Delivery Surge It Can Handle by Paul Ziobro at Wall Street Journal. “FedEx has had relatively flawless peak service for a long time and they’re perceived as relatively riskless compared to UPS,” said Rick Paterson, a transportation analyst at Loop Capital.” WSJ subs.


Argentina says close to inking a two-way beef deal with U.S. at Reuters. Read more


CoverGirl unveils Times Square store with focus on Instagram by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “There’s also a hologram customer greeter at the entrance named Olivia who offers advice — including directions to the nearest subway. Makeup artists are on hand for free 15-minute sessions or a 60-minute session with a minimum purchase of $60 worth of products. Also available for sale for the first time are CoverGirl accessories like a $50 bomber jacket.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Missouri and France Unite—to Suppress Plant-Based Meat

Amazon denies report it asked police to stop worker strike in Spain

First gene-edited babies claimed in China

James Corden Goes No. 1 on Top TV Personalities Social Media Ranking

Ohio becomes the first state to accept bitcoin for tax payments

First Oil Flows from BP’s New 640 Million Barrel North Sea Field

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Tipsheet: WM Asks Fire Survivors to Leave | Target & Lowe’s Call Hi-Lites


Walmart asks California ‘Wallywood’ fire survivors to move on by Molly Sullivan & Ryan Lillis at Sacramento Bee. “Multiple evacuees interviewed by The Sacramento Bee Tuesday before the Walmart notice was posted said they wanted to stay close to Paradise in the hopes that evacuation orders would soon be lifted…“We’re not leaving because this is the area that we know everything,” said Jim Sampson, from a tent that he is sharing with his friend Brenda Wilson.” Read more


Gap Q3 comp sales flat: Old Navy +4.0% / Gap -7.0% / Banana Republic +2.0% Press release


Amazon employees snapped up NYC real estate before headquarters announcement by Josh Barbanel at Wall Street Journal. “While employees aren’t permitted to buy and sell stocks based on nonpublic information, several real estate lawyers said they were aware of no such prohibition for real-estate transactions.” WSJ subs.


BJ’s Q3 comp sales (excluding fuel) +1.9% Press release


Walgreens and Humana are reportedly in talks to take stakes in each other at CNBC. Read more


Kohl’s Cracks the Retail Code by Phil Wahba at Fortune. “The young woman walked into the Kohl’s store in Grafton, Wis., dressed to run errands, in Ugg boots, yoga pants, and a hoodie…Kohl’s CEO, Michelle Gass, who was showing a reporter around the store, interrupted the tour to watch the younger woman intently. “This is the quintessential Kohl’s shopper we want to see in the future,” she said.” Read more


IKEA Group plans to cut 7,500 administrative jobs at Reuters. Read more


Victoria’s Secret’s latest Hail Mary: Bringing back sunglasses and swimsuits by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “Victoria’s Secret began selling Ugg merchandise about a month ago…plans to bring back eyewear in the coming months…“At the end of the day someone else’s brand is not going to save Victoria’s Secret,” Instinent analyst Simeon Siegel said.” Read more


America’s Best Customer Service 2019 (Groceries – Amazon, Cosmetics – Avon) at Newsweek. List


Foot Locker Q3 comp sales +2.9% at MarketWatch. Read more


Saks ‘hid,’ discriminated against minorities, older workers: lawsuit at NY Daily News. “According to Sells, the plaintiffs — Thomas Bisky, 68, Kenneth Taylor, 55, Nixson McCray, 57, William Charles Blocker, 60, Roger Dietch, 70, Pablo Orosco, 54, and Derick Longley and Carlos Batista — were stationed in areas of their respective stores where there was less foot traffic.” Read more


CDC warns against eating romaine lettuce amid E. coli outbreak at The Hill. Read more


Amazon Aims to Put Digital Wallet in Stores at Wall Street Journal. “Amazon is working to persuade brick-and-mortar merchants to accept its Amazon Pay digital wallet, according to people familiar with the matter…To start, the company is looking to work with gas stations, restaurants and other merchants that aren’t direct competitors.” WSJ subs.


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Walmart begins testing same-day grocery delivery in one of its stores in China by Sarah Perez & Rita Liao at TechCrunch. “The feature allows Walmart’s WeChat customers to place orders on mobile and then receive delivery in as little as one hour. Nearly 8,000 SKUs are available on the service.” Read more


Canada Post warns of delivery delays during holiday season and into January at Toronto Star. “Is this going to lead people to do their shopping in bricks and mortar stores rather than online? Sure,” said Karl Littler, vice-president of public affairs for the Retail Council of Canada.” Tiered subs.


…Ottawa prepared to order end to postal strike in coming days at Montreal Gazette. “The federal government is prepared to order an end to rotating strikes by Canada Post employees if a collective agreement isn’t soon reached, Labour Minister Patty Hajdu said Tuesday.” Read more


Amazon reportedly among bidders for 22 regional sports networks being sold by Disney at USA Today. Read more


SpartanNash to Acquire Martin’s Super Markets Press release


Rep. Bobby Rush says Target ‘wants the Christmas money from the very community it’s turning it’s back on’ by Lisa Donovan at Chicago Tribune. “Rush has organized a Black Friday protest and boycott at Target’s 85th Street and Cottage Grove Avenue store, hoping to hit the retailer in the wallet. He said he’s puzzled about the claim the store isn’t doing well.” Tiered subs.


Express Scripts partnering with Petco for pet medication delivery Press release


U.S. states count on extra online sales tax to boost budget at Reuters. “But tax analysts, attorneys and policymakers say these new laws might not give states what they are banking on. States are devising different plans with varying legal and procedural elements – some being rushed out before they are ready – leaving them open to lawsuits from retailers and others.” Read more


Former Amazon employee launches startup to prepare candidates for tech giant’s grueling interview process by Kurt Schlosser at GeekWire. “Amazon hopefuls looking to prep for an interview can spend $200, for a 2 1/2-hour “essential course”; $700 for an 8-hour “complete workshop”; or the top tier of $4,500 for several hours where Dimitrov acts as Bar Raiser in a simulated Amazon interview loop, complete with friends who are current Amazon employees.” Read more


Home Depot Holds Fast At Number One in Radio at Radio Ink. “Other familiar names rounded out the top five slots with JC Penney third (36,459), followed by Lowe’s (28,774), and McDonald’s (28,593).” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Americans value money over faith

10 metro areas with the highest rates of holiday package theft

Inside the Hunt for the World’s Most Dangerous Terrorist

ATM falls off back of truck in bungled heist at 7-Eleven

Man Accused of Using Blowtorches to Break Into, Burglarize Target Stores

‘Sopranos’ Movie Finds Its Lead

Casey’s expands in Wisconsin with Tri-Par purchase

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories



Heard on the Call:

Target Q3 Call Highlights

Brian Cornell

We plan to host our 2019 Financial Community Meeting in New York City on Tuesday, March 5.

Q: Did China tariff play any role in – bringing in more inventory in the third quarter? Cornell: Yes

We did move a lot of inventory in second quarter, and we did it at a higher cost. Do you guys all know there’s transportation pressure out there? 

  • We will find ways to offset that incremental cost through other ways as we go forward.


John Mulligan

We have seen a measurable incremental lift in the second year of the remodels we completed more than a year-ago.

Drive-Up continues to receive the highest Net Promoter Score of any service we provide.

Our inventory position was up about 18% compared with last year.

We have achieved our goal to hire 120,000 seasonal team members.

Shipt: I think the metric I look at gets me most excited, if you look at…markets that have been open for over a year still continue to see triple-digit growth in sales, in GMV.


Mark Tritton

In Apparel, we saw particular strength in Baby as well as Jewelry and Accessories and Men’s.

Growth in Home was led by outstanding comps in our home decor assortment.

Hardlines saw even stronger performance, comping in the high single-digits this quarter.

  • This was led by Toys, which saw comp growth of more than 20%.

We saw particular outstanding performance in Essentials and Beauty, which grew faster than the company average.

  • Within this category, we saw double-digit growth in Baby

In Food and Beverage, comp sales grew about 4% in the third quarter.

  • Double-digit comps again in adult beverage.

We’ve recently rolled out new shipping boxes on These boxes are unmistakably Target and feature our iconic Bullseye Mascot.

Full transcript via Seeking Alpha



Lowe’s Q3 Call Highlights

Marvin Ellison

We intend to exit our retail operations in Mexico and our Alacrity Renovation Services and Iris Smart Home businesses.

  • These actions send a clear message that we’ll no longer pursue ventures that dilute our return on capital.

Comparable sales growth of 1.5%, driven by a 2.3% increase in average ticket, partially offset by 1% decline in transactions.

12% comp growth on

Out of stocks continued to pressure sales.

Our inefficient reset process continued to create disruption in our stores and contributed to out of stocks.

  • All of our categories with negative comps – millwork, paint, fashion, fixtures and flooring – were pressured by fully executed resets.

Our store processes are too complex, our labor management system is primitive, and our associates are burdened with too many tasks.

Our project specialists and install sales business is too complicated.

We’re in a $900 billion fragmented home improvement marketplace…if you combine us and our chief competitor, that’s less than $200 billion in revenue…there is a lot of market share up for grabs.


William Boltz

Seasonal and outdoor living led the way with high single-digit comps, driven by double-digit comps in grills and lawnmowers.

For the ninth quarter in a row, we drove above-average comps in appliances.

Our kitchen department also posted above-average comps, with strength in organization and shelving as well as cabinets and countertops.

Millwork was pressured by supply and reset challenges.

Our paint business was impacted by brand transitions, along with supply disruption, as we transitioned into our exclusive partnership with Sherwin-Williams.

Our fashion fixtures department was negatively impacted by reset challenges in light bulbs and commercial lighting.

The under performance in our flooring business continued and was driven by reset disruption in hard surface.

Throughout the fourth quarter, we will showcase Craftsman on multiple end caps

Full transcript via Seeking Alpha



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Tipsheet: Messing Outs WM | Lowe’s Exits Mexico | Bezos New Shadow | TJX +7%


Target Q3 Comp Sales +5.1% / Traffic Growth +5.3% / Online +49% Press release


…Target shares slide after disappointing 3Q earnings results by Anne D’innocenzio at AP. “Target exclusively told The AP that it’s redesigned the pack stations, while workers’ tasks are now divided into clear roles: pickers, those who prep orders, packers and sorters…They’re also armed with new apps on their phones that help them navigate the store to find the online orders more quickly…” Read more


Lowe’s Q3 Comp Sales +1.5% / US + 2.0% Press release


…Lowe’s to exit Mexico operations and Iris Smart Home Businesses by Katherine Peralta at Charlotte Observer. “…earnings for the quarter were $629 million, down from $872 million during the same quarter of 2017. Adjusted for non-recurring costs, earnings were $1.04 per share. Analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research estimated 97 cents per share.” Tiered subs.


Best Buy Q3 Comp Sales +4.3% Press release


TJX Q3 Comp Sales +7.0% / Marmaxx +9.0% / HomeGoods +7% Press release


Kohl’s Q3 Comp Sales +2.5% Press release


…Kohl’s earnings top estimates but shares fall as outlook disappoints at CNBC. “Net sales climbed 1.3 percent to $4.369 billion, slightly beating Wall Street expectations for $4.365 billion. Total revenue was $4.63 billion.” Read more


Jeff Bezos has a new ‘shadow:’ Amazon forecasting executive Wei Gao by Clare McGrane at GeekWire. “Gao is only the second woman to be appointed to the role. According to CNBC, she is also of Chinese descent, making her the first Asian-American woman in the position.” Read more


CVS expects Aetna deal to close after Thanksgiving at Reuters. “…had previously expected the transaction to close by Nov. 22…CVS said in a filing it had received approval from 26 of the 28 state departments of insurance and was in the final stages of the approval process with the two remaining states.” Read more


Kroger announces first US robotic warehouse for home delivery in Cincy suburb by Alexander Coolidge at Cincinnati Enquirer. “…its first of 20 robotic warehouses to boost home grocery delivery will be built in the Cincinnati suburb of Monroe. Operation will begin by 2021…(Kroger) will spend $55 million constructing the facility that will create 410 new jobs.” Tiered subs.


Brian Cornell Appointed Non-Executive Chairman of Yum! Brands Press release


**A message from BK Resources – The Best Kept secret for commercial and food service kitchen equipment. Leading supplier of stainless steel: commercial faucets, sinks, work tables, bar equipment, ice bins and more. Catalog | Website | Contact


Bain, KKR Establish Severance Fund for Toys ‘R’ Us Workers by Lillian Rizzo at Wall Street Journal. “Private-equity firms pay combined $20 million to those left jobless by retailer’s bankruptcy…is an unusual move by the private-equity firms. The fund isn’t required under bankruptcy law.” WSJ subs.


…How Laid-Off Toys R Us Workers Came Together To Fight Wall Street by Dave Jamieson at HuffPo. “Still, the Toys R Us workers are demanding a much larger fund, totaling $75 million…They also want to draw public attention to retail’s looming private-equity problem and make sure all retail workers ― most of them women, and many living paycheck to paycheck in a largely non-union industry ― enjoy some basic protections if their companies go under.” Read more


Stage Stores Q3 Comps: Gordmans +9.9% / Dept. Stores -5.5% / Total Co. -2.8% Press release


NRF: More Than 164 Million Consumers Plan to Shop Over Five-Day Thanksgiving Weekend Press release


Deloitte: More than 70% of Consumers Plan to Shop During the Holiday Weekend “Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) plan to shop online Cyber Monday,which is also poised to take nearly half (47 percent) of all online spending that occurs over the course of the weekend.” Press release


Tops Markets emerges from Chapter 11 Press release


Canada Goose turns dressing rooms into freezers so customers can test out its $1,000 coats at Bloomberg via Montreal Gazette. “A Montreal location, which opened Friday, is the fifth to include the fancy freezer, and Beijing will join later this year as the company rolls out its China expansion plan.” Read more


Barnes & Noble Q2 Comp Sales -1.4% “The Company’s best quarterly performance since the fourth quarter of fiscal 2016.” Press release


Ross Stores Q3 Comp Sales +3.0% Press release


Walmart asks GOP Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith for campaign donation back because of outrage over ‘hanging’ comments at CNBC. Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

The ‘turkey challenge’ prank is freaking out parents everywhere

Drug industry nervous about Sen. Grassley’s new role

Forklift driver causes a warehouse to fall like dominoes when he nudges a shelving unit

Pharmacy tech among those killed in Chicago shooting

Taylor Swift’s New Record Deal Could Pay As Much As $200M

Dolce and Gabbana accused of racism in Chinese ‘chopsticks’ ads

The NBA is China’s most popular sports league. Here’s how it happened

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories



Eye on Retail Tipsheet is must-read material for 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: Waterfront Publix | Carell as Bezos | 55% Shop Before B.Friday


Florida sues Walgreens, CVS over opioid sales at CNBC. “CVS spokesman Mike DeAngelis called the lawsuit “without merit” in a statement Saturday…Walgreens said Saturday it doesn’t comment on pending lawsuits.” Read more


J Crew’s CEO is stepping down less than two years into the job at CNN. “…the company said that Jim Brett was leaving because of a disagreement with the board of directors over how to “evolve” J Crew. Four senior executives will share CEO responsibilities.” Read more


Steve Carell as Jeff Bezos on ‘Saturday Night Live’ trolls Trump by Kurt Schlosser at GeekWire. “As fake Bezos flipped through the Washington Post and showed off a delivery drone with Trump-like hair, the digs at the president came quicker and quicker…“We can pay our respects to fallen veterans, even when it’s raining outside,”  fake Bezos said.” Video/Read more feels pressure as sales of big ticket items slow at Reuters. “, which is backed by Walmart Inc, Alphabet Inc’s Google and China’s Tencent Holdings, has already lost nearly half of its market value this year as it fights intense competition for Chinese online consumers.” Read more


CNBC investigates online subscription models “We are looking into a number of businesses right now in this area,” said James Kohm, assistant director of enforcement at the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “It’s an area that’s rife with problems right now.” Read more


7-Eleven franchisee group votes to skip annual convention for second year in a row by Maria Halkias at Dallas Morning News. “Between 2019 and 2024, 80 percent of existing 10-year and 15-year franchise agreements will expire. The franchisees said that terms of a new agreement will reduce their profits and that so far, 7-Eleven has presented it in a “take it or leave it” manner that they find “coercive.” Tiered subs.


**A message from X1 Ebike – Up to 37 miles on a single 4-hour charge. Folds into the size of a golf bag in 1 second. GPS tracking, VIN # & alarm for security. Video | Website | Contact


David’s Bridal files for bankruptcy – brides will receive their gowns on time during its restructuring at Reuters. Read more


‘Most of the oranges go in the trash’: Mpls. rule about healthy food in c-stores may be reversed by Mukhtar M. Ibrahim at Star Tribune. “Since 2014, as part of its “staple foods” ordinance, Minneapolis has required licensed grocery stores, corner shops and convenience stores to stock a variety of healthy foods from 10 categories…City officials acknowledge that they need to loosen the rules.” Tiered subs.


Publix eyes supermarket on the water in South Florida, with a boat dock and outdoor cafe tables by Howard Cohen at Miami Herald. “According to the Sun Sentinel, plans for the waterfront Publix are expected to go before Hollywood’s Technical Advisory Committee for zoning review in December, followed by the Planning and Development Board for a recommendation to the Hollywood City Commission.” Read more


Walgreens opens only Chicago store without a pharmacy by Rachel Frazin at Chicago Sun Times. “I would imagine it’s inevitable that traditional brick-and-mortar pharmacies become less prevalent,” (Professor Pickard) said. He said more and more drugs will be dispensed by pharmacists working in high-volume pharmacy centers that send patients medicine via mail.” Read more


YouTube quietly adds around 100 ad-supported Hollywood movies to its site by Sarah Perez at TechCrunch. “Before, YouTube had only offered consumers the ability to purchase movies and TV shows.” Read more


Men will be the big spenders this holiday season at CNBC. “Roughly 30 percent of men said they plan to spend more than $750 during November and December, while only about 25 percent of women said the same, according to a new study by JLL.” Read more


More than 1 million consumers canceled their cable-TV or satellite subscriptions in the past quarter, one of the largest seasonal drops ever by Drew Fitzgerald & Benjamin Mullin at Wall Street Journal. WSJ subs.


55% have shopped or intend to shop before Black Friday at Brand Keys. Read more


Amazon Prime members can see Aquaman a week early at participating cinemas at The Verge. “Meanwhile, rival Netflix has tended to cut cinemas out of its major releases, a move that’s caused it to face criticism from the film industry and had it excluded from major film festivals — although it changed its policy for this year’s release of Roma.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

San Fran Uber driver selling HDX brand respirator masks at huge markup

Sam’s Club Employee Asked To Retake Photo After Member Complains About His ‘Black Panther’ Shirt

Xiaomi made a 150-inch $2,000 laser projector exclusively available at Walmart

Why Ford wants to get rid of that new car smell

Anti-vaccination stronghold hit with N.Carolina’s worst chickenpox outbreak in 2 decades

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories



Eye on Retail Tipsheet is must-read material for 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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