Retail sales plunge a record 16.4% in April at CNBC. “Economists surveyed by Dow Jones expected the advanced retail sales number to fall 12.3%…clothing and accessories -89.3%…Furniture stores also got clobbered (-66.5%) as did electronics and appliances (-64.8%), sporting goods (-48.9%) and restaurants and bars (-48.7%). The sole bright spot was grocery stores, which rose 13.2%.” Read more
Amazon may be on the prowl for more Fairway grocery stores at NY Post. “After forking over $1.5 million for two of Fairway’s grocery stores in March, the online shopping giant has been kicking the tires at other Fairway locations, including in the Douglaston neighborhood of Queens; in the Long Island town of Westbury and in Harlem, sources told The Post.” Read more
Ahold Delhaize Accelerates Automation as Coronavirus Pressures Workforce at Wall Street Journal. “Ahold Delhaize’s AI team is also focusing on improving the robotic arm’s ability to identify and hold different products without damaging them. “Fruits are extremely challenging for a robot to handle because they’re very fragile and have an unusual shape,” Mr. Voorn said.” WSJ subs.
A seventh Amazon employee dies of COVID-19 at The Verge. Read more
Sephora awards $250M North American media account to Publicis Groupe at MediaPost. “The new partnership will be led by Digitas, and it’s believed assisted with data from its sister shop Epsilon. The U.S. portion covers media strategy, planning and buying for all media channels with the exception of addressable TV.” Read more
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JC Penney is planning to file for bankruptcy as early as Friday at CNBC. Read more
Coronavirus to Slow U.S. Meat Production for Months, CEO Says at Wall Street Journal. “JBS USA Holdings Inc., which slaughters 23% of the country’s cattle and produces nearly one-fifth of its pork, is revamping plant operations to space workers farther apart while about 10% of its workforce has been sent home because of their higher risk from Covid-19, Chief Executive Andre Nogueira said.” WSJ subs.
Mall of America to reopen June 1 at The Hill. Read more
A fever is 100.4 in Ohio; it’s 99.5 in Minnesota at MSN. “At Walmart, a temperature above 100 degrees is enough for a worker to be sent home. At Amazon, it’s 100.4. “Where do you set the bar? Well, what is your threshold for risk?” said Steven Lawrence, an infectious disease specialist and professor at Washington University in St. Louis.” Read more
Canadian home sales plunge 56.8% in April as lockdowns bite at Reuters. Read more
IKEA’s shopping malls arm Ingka Centres plans U.S. entry in major play at Reuters. “IKEA’s shopping malls business, one of the world’s biggest, is looking to enter the United States in the next couple of years and is in talks to snap up central properties in major cities, its boss told Reuters.” Read more
Office Depot To Cut 13,100 Jobs As It Focuses On IT Services at CRN. Read more
The Brit Trying to Fix Facebook’s Global Image
FDA Warns Abbott Coronavirus Tests Could Be Inaccurate
Amazon files lawsuit over ‘widespread tech support fraud’
Belgian Trappists reopen tap for beer sales
One in 4 restaurants won’t re-open, study says
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