Tipsheet: Lowe’s Gen T | WM AI Store | Stop & Shop Strike Cost $110M


UK regulator blocks Sainsbury’s merger with Walmart-owned Asda at Reuters. “(CEO) Coupe made unwanted headlines when he was caught on camera singing: “We’re in the money” shortly after the deal was announced last April. Analysts said questions will be raised over his future after it failed to win approval.” Read more


Pier 1 Imports may be headed toward bankruptcy, S&P warns by Nathan Bomey at USA Today. “The negative outlook reflects that we do not see a path for Pier 1 to return to profitability in the coming six months to one year, even when factoring in the full impact of planned performance improvements,” S&P said.” Read more


At Walmart, using AI to watch the store by Anne D’innocenzio at AP. “The thousands of cameras are a key feature of the lab, which officially opens inside this 50,000-square-foot store on Thursday…The technology…will also be able to track when shelves need to be restocked or if shopping carts are running low. It can spot spills on the floor and even detect when cash registers need to be opened up before long lines start forming.” Read more


Stop & Shop says strike cost company upwards of $110 million by Jonathan Ng at Boston Herald. “For us, it’s a rather unfortunate and unusual situation,” said (CEO) Muller to analysts. “In all the years with Stop & Shop in the last 25 years, we’ve done a very good negotiation process and a fruitful process with the unions. So it’s very unfortunate that this happened, this big strike impact.” Read more


Walmart creates Angus beef supply chain, cutting out meat processors at Reuters. “Normally, Walmart would buy Angus beef from companies like Tyson Foods Inc and Cargill Inc. Walmart has now arranged to source cattle from Texas rancher Bob McClaren of Prime Pursuits and 44 Farms…The cattle will be fed at a feedyard that specializes in avoiding hormones, slaughtered in Kansas and packaged in Georgia before the beef hits shelves in about 500 Walmart stores in the southeastern United States.” Read more


CVS will bring hundreds of SmileDirectClub shops to its stores, offering a cheaper way to straighten teeth at CNBC. “…with plans to open more than 1,000 locations over the next two years…Called a SmileShop, customers can receive a 3D scan of their teeth that will be used to create a pair of invisible braces.” Read more


Toy sellers fed up with popular dolls and CEO behind them by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “Retail sales of the LOL Surprise franchise, which also includes revenue from licensed products, topped $4 billion last year and are expected to expand to $5 billion in 2019. “We are struggling to meet the demand,” Larian said.” Read more


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Amazon lets some Alexa workers see exactly where you are by Jared Newman at Fast Company. “In some cases, the Alexa audit team can see precise geographic coordinates, which they could easily look up in an app like Google Maps to determine someone’s whereabouts. Two sources apparently blew the whistle after concluding that Amazon was giving its workers overly broad access to personal data.” Read more


Loan documents deteriorate further following Neiman Marcus lawsuit at Reuters. Read more


Lowe’s launches workforce training network to address skills gap, economic mobility by Katherine Peralta at Charlotte Observer. “Lowe’s is launching a workforce development network that has a two-pronged purpose: To educate young people on jobs in trades like construction, and to help build a pipeline of skilled workers who make up an important part of its customer base. Generation T, or Gen T…is a consortium of 60 member organizations, from appliance maker Bosch to Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, according to Mike Mitchell, Lowe’s skilled trades director.” Tiered subs.


Here’s how Amazon innovation guru Paul Misener uses machine learning at home by Alan Boyle at GeekWire. Read more


PayPal Ventures invests $11 million in retail start-up Happy Returns at CNBC. “Happy Returns operates more than 350 Return Bars in malls, on college campuses and even inside stores like Cost Plus World Market and Paper Source for shoppers to return items bought online when the brand doesn’t have its own physical store.” Read more


Pinterest employee #1 launches blockchain art market MakersPlace by Josh Constine at TechCrunch. Read more


Penn campus’ independent bookstore is fighting a losing battle against Amazon, but there’s hope by Sam Wood at Philly Inquirer. “Daily rallies this week on the Penn campus have attracted dozens of placard-wielding faculty members, graduate students, undergrads and local residents demanding the university engage with the store’s owners to help find a solution that will keep Book Center from dying.” Read more


Millennials Tried to Kill the American Mall, But Gen Z Might Save It by Jordyn Holman at Bloomberg. “Around 95 percent of (Gen Z) visited a physical shopping center in a three-month period in 2018, as opposed to just 75 percent of millennials and 58 percent of Gen X, according to an International Council of Shopping Centers study. And they genuinely like it; three-quarters of them said going to a brick-and-mortar store was a better experience than online, ICSC found.” Tiered subs.


Tipsheet Extra Stories

HGTV Names New President

Walmart’s top five executives earned $68.73 million last year

Kroger’s Louisville division ratifies new labor agreement

Home Depot could have been called ‘Bad Bernie’s Buildall’

Jimmy Carter bags a wild turkey at age 94

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories



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