Tipsheet: Ex-Target Exec to Lululemon | Wmart Closings ‘Impressive’ | Sports Auth. Skips $20M Payment


Washington Post: Holiday shopping season was not as merry as the retail industry expected by Sarah Halzack. “The National Retail Federation said sales were up 3 percent to $626.14 billion this holiday season, sharply lower than the 3.7 percent sales increase the trade group had forecast. That figure excludes sales at gas stations and restaurants…“Make no mistake about it, this was a tough holiday season for the industry,” said Matthew Shay, the NRF’s president, in a press release.” Read more


…Online holiday sales increase more than predicted by Tracy Maple at Internet Retailer. “The 9% increase beat the NRF’s October projection of 6-8% non-store sales growth.” Read more


US recession probability at highest levels since fall 2011: Survey by Fred Imbert & Steve Liesman at CNBC. “The survey also showed recession fears rising for the sixth straight time among respondents, and are now sitting at 28.8 percent.” Read more


Lululemon Hires Former Top Target Executive by Jason Del Rey at Recode. “(Alan) Wizemann will spend time at Lululemon’s headquarters in Vancouver, but also plans to hire a team of front-end engineers and designers in Portland, Ore., where he lives with his family.” Read more


Wal-Mart merges tech teams to better connect online and stores by Nathan Layne at Reuters. “The information systems division…will combine with the @WalmartLabs unit next month, creating a new group called Walmart Technology…Chief Information Officer Karenann Terrell and Chief Technical Officer Jeremy King will continue to lead ISD and @WalmartLabs, respectively, although both will report to (Neil) Ashe as head of the combined group.” Read more


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Sports Authority Skips $20 Million Interest Payment by Jodi Xu Klein & Lauren Coleman-Lochner at Bloomberg. “Without reaching an agreement with the bondholders for a forbearance, the company will be forced to file for bankruptcy as skipping a coupon payment is considered a default.” Read more


Doug McMillon Answers Questions About Store Closures “Walmart will continue to invest in its future, with plans to open more than 300 new stores worldwide over the coming year — in the U.S. Walmart intends to open 50 to 60 Supercenters, 85 to 95 Neighborhood Markets and seven to 10 Sam’s Clubs. We will also open 200 to 240 stores internationally.” Read more


Cramer: Wal-Mart’s move is ‘impressive’ by Fred Imbert at CNBC. “You have to close the stores that don’t work, and [CEO Doug] McMillon continues to take tough actions. I appreciate what he’s doing,” Cramer said on “Squawk on the Street.” “This is impressive that he’s willing to bite the bullet on stores that should be closed.” Read more


Today’s Schedule at Retail’s Big Show: Presentations from Lowe’s/Walgreens/JCP Execs See today’s schedule


Target to open Uptown Minneapolis store by Nick Halter at Minneapolis/St.Paul Business Journal. “Target Corp. is finally going to open a store in Uptown, a part of Minneapolis where many of its young headquarters employees live. The Minneapolis-based retailer said it’s planning a 21,400-square-foot store on the ground floor of the redevelopment planned for the site of the former Cheapo Discs store.” Read more


Tweet from Home Depot’s Mark White: Congrats Anne-Marie Campbell (@AMCTHD )..MET Founder and 30 yr THD vet..promoted to EVP of US Stores! #orangeblooded  See the feed


China’s Invested Around $50 Million in Shopping Startup Wish by Jason Del Rey at Recode. “Wish’s Szulczewski told Re/code recently that he believes his startup will be the second or third marketplace to reach $1 trillion in sales, after Alibaba and maybe Amazon.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Court rules Target Canada tried to use insolvency laws to avoid landlord losses

Adidas names Henkel’s Rorsted to replace Hainer as CEO

Time: Why Walmart’s Small ‘Express’ Store Format Was Such a Big Failure

As Used-Car Startups Take Off, eBay Motors Faces Uncertain Future

USPS will hike some postal rates as much as 14% starting Jan. 17

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories