Eye-on-Retail Tipsheet 3/6/13: Google’s Rumored Alliance with Walmart & Target


“Google’s Rumored Target and Walmart Alliance Could Scare the Prime Out of Amazon” by Louis Bedigian at Benzinga.  “Google is reportedly working on a new shopping service to take on Amazon Prime.  According to TechCrunch, the new service (which is being referred to as “Google Shopping Express”) will retail at $64 or $69 a year, making it considerably cheaper than Amazon Prime, which sells for $79.99 a year. It will also provide subscribers with expedited delivery options from Target , Walmart,  Walgreens and Safeway.   Read more: https://www.benzinga.com/news/13/03/3391587/googles-rumored-target-and-walmart-alliance-could-scare-the-prime-out-of-amazon#ixzz2MlkrSH61


Walmart U.S. CEO, Bill Simon, Speaks at Raymond James Investor Conference:  “Some Shoppers Shun Online Credit Card Use: Wal-Mart” by Mark Hamstra at Supermarket News.  “He also said the company has had success with its Site to Store delivery, through which products are ordered online and picked up at the store. He cited a Neighborhood Market location in downtown Chicago that generates “up to 20% to 25% of its sales” through Walmart.com and Site to Store. “In fact, so much volume is done there that we had to rent more space from the landlord, just to be able to store the products that were shipped to the store through Walmart.com,” Simon said.  He also detailed the company’s small-format rollouts, describing a “density test” with its small-format Walmart Exporess stores in the Raleigh-Durham market in North Carolina, where Wal-Mart is seeking to learn “what happens when you put a lot of these in close proximity.”  Read more:  https://supermarketnews.com/retail-amp-financial/some-shoppers-shun-online-credit-card-use-wal-mart


“Target is here … now what?” at Maclean’s (Text and Video of store opening).  “They showed up at 5:30 a.m. and were first in line. Their goal was to find printer ink cartridges at a cheaper price than the competitors.  Behind them was Rhonda Weatherall, a local resident who remembers when Walmart launched its first store in Guelph several years ago.  “I was the first one in,” she said. “So I kind of wanted to come and compare.”  But after a walk through the aisles of the Target store she “wasn’t overly impressed.”  “There wasn’t a lot of great deals that I saw,” she said.”  Read and see more:  https://www2.macleans.ca/2013/03/05/target-is-here-now-what/


“Amazon Launching First TV Effort For Fashion Unit” by Sarah Mahoney at Media Post.  “Would the kind of woman who would rock a $24,000 bridesmaid gown shop in the same store that sells $5 mini-dresses?  Well, if the store is Amazon, she just might. Or at least that’s what the e-commerce giant is hoping –reportedly rolling out its first-ever TV campaign for Amazon Fashion, an effort to let fashionistas know that the world’s biggest online retailer has plenty of runway swagger.  Women’s Wear Daily reports that the company is launching a 30-second TV spot, directed by director/photographer Peggy Sirota, said to be airing in prime-time programming in select markets.”  Read more: https://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/194850/amazon-launching-first-tv-campaign-for-fashion-uni.html#ixzz2Mlo6S2Yx


“Martha Stewart Denies Wrongdoing With JC Penney Deal” at CNBC.  “Stewart said it’s Macy’s that didn’t uphold its end of the agreement to try to maximize the potential of her business. She said her brand, which is about a $300 million business at Macy’s, has grown “static” at the department-store chain. She said she was hoping the business would exceed well over $400 million.  “We were disappointed,” Stewart, wearing a sleeveless jacket and mini skirt, testified. “We did have hopes that the business would be much bigger … We got to a certain dollar amount and struggled and never got any further.”  Read more:  https://www.cnbc.com/id/100524473


“Home Depot quietly ends light-bulb-recycling program (in Canada)” at CBC News-Ottawa.  “A large home improvement retailer has decided to quietly pull the plug on its compact fluorescent light-bulb-recycling program nationwide, upsetting an environmental non-profit that has handed out hundreds of thousands of the energy-efficient bulbs in Canada.”  Read more:  https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/story/2013/03/06/ottawa-home-depot-cfl-recycling-bulbs-program-stopped-end-finish.html


“Walgreens February Sales Decrease 2.2 Percent”  “Walgreens had February sales of $5.75 billion, a decrease of 2.2 percent from $5.88 billion for the same month in fiscal 2012. Last year’s total February sales benefited from one extra day because of the leap year. Excluding last February’s leap day, this year’s February sales increased 1.5 percent. Total front-end sales decreased 3.1 percent compared with the same month in fiscal 2012.”  Read more:  https://www.businesswire.com/portal/site/home/permalink/?ndmViewId=news_view&newsLang=en&newsId=20130305005381&div=-1245645151


“Lowe’s Earns Fourth Consecutive ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Award”  “Lowe’s is the only company to win multiple Sustained Excellence Awards in the product retailer category since the award’s inception in 2004. The company is being honored for outstanding achievements year after year in customer outreach, employee training and product selection. Lowe’s has won 11 consecutive ENERGY STAR awards (2003-2013) for product retailing, more than any other retailer.”  Read more:  https://www.businesswire.com/portal/site/home/permalink/?ndmViewId=news_view&newsLang=en&newsId=20130305006538&div=-1245645151


“Hostess sues Kroger for unpaid invoices” at Business Courier-Cincinnati.  “The company filed a lawsuit against The Kroger Co. demanding about $2.84 million in overdue invoices on Friday, according to Reuters. The baker and bread maker alleges that Kroger and its subsidiaries haven’t made payments since July.  The maker of Wonder Bread and Twinkies is also asking a bankruptcy judge to disallow at least two legal claims that Kroger has made against it until the payments are made.”  Read more:  https://www.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/morning_call/2013/03/hostess-sues-kroger-for-unpaid-invoices.html


“Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. to present at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2013 Consumer & Retail Conference”  “Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.  will participate in the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2013 Consumer & Retail Conference on Tuesday, March 12. Chief Financial Officer Charles Holley will provide an update on the company’s financial priorities as the keynote speaker at the conference at approximately 12:30 p.m. EDT.”  Read more:  https://www.businesswire.com/portal/site/home/permalink/?ndmViewId=news_view&newsLang=en&newsId=20130305005986&div=-1245645151


Thanks for reading…


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