Tipsheet: Target’s ‘Cart Guy’ | McKenna Honorary Chair | Macy’s Hiring R.Estate Exec | ‘Toxic’ Jewelry


Number of store closures already set to outpace last year by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “The number of store closures during the first two months of 2016 is already 33.2 percent higher — hitting 501 stores — than the same period last year, according to an analysis by Church’s firm. That compared with a 29 percent increase in 2015 over the previous year and a 6.3 percent increase in 2014.” Read more


Grand Rapids Target ‘cart guy’ delivers a few lessons in tolerance by Jon Tevlin at Star Tribune. “After hearing of Aaron’s job loss, Dowell set up a Facebook page to support and celebrate Aaron. In no time the site had 2,300 “likes” and had interactions with as many as 23,000 people, almost all of them positive. The page is filled with stories from customers saying how Aaron regularly made their day with his kindness and enthusiasm.” Read more


Macy’s hiring expert to deal with real estate by Andy Brownfield at Cincinnati Business Courier. “The line of people at our door who are attracted to that job has been very impressive”…We will always be a retailer first,”(Terry) Lundgren said. “This will be another set of expertise that will add value to us as a retailer.” Read more


Lowe’s looks for edge with new distribution concept by Katherine Peralta at Charlotte Observer. “…they know to set a grill up on a customer’s deck, connect the gas, fire it up and demonstrate how it works – all in a specified 2-hour window the customer selects…the new model gives Lowe’s an edge over an online retailer, which would have a freight company drop the product off on the doorstep and leave.” Read more


Judith McKenna, COO Walmart U.S, named Honorary Chair for the 2016 Komen Ozark Race for the Cure via NWA. “I had somebody come to see me whose wife has just been diagnosed and that is a Wednesday in the office… That’s what really makes you realize, and it really brought it home to me how important it is to do this and for me, whatever I can do to support it.” Read more


Minimum Wage Hikes Will Raise E-Commerce Shipping Costs by David Z.Morris at Fortune. “CBRE says each $1 increase in average hourly wages would add $1 million in costs to a warehouse with a staff of at least 500.” Read more


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Amazon Leans on Government in Its Quest to Be a Delivery Powerhouse by Cecilia King at NY Times. “When Paul Misener, Amazon’s global head of policy, took over the company’s Washington office 15 years ago, he had a staff of two…Amazon now has more than 60 people listed as its lobbyists — both employees and contractors — double what it had just two years ago.” Read more


HAPPENING TODAY – Judge in Washington weighs whether to block Staples/Office Depot merger by Jon Chesto at Boston Globe. Read more


Amazon bans customer who returned 37 items in 15 years by Jimmy Nsubuga at Metro. “Greg Nelson, a computer programmer, is still scratching his head trying to figure out why he had his account blocked.” Read more


Home Depot Co-Founder Gives $75 Million To Atlanta Hospital by Natalie Sportelli at Forbes. Read more


Bass Pro sales near $45 million in first 9 months at Memphis Pyramid by Wayne Risher at The Commercial Appeal. “The store’s best month was June, when it bagged $7.1 million, and the slowest was November, $3.38 million, according to gross sales reports.” Read more


Sears Canada strategy ‘starts’ with Toronto innovations lab by Marina Strauss at Globe & Mail. “Mr. Stranzl has hired new top executives, including a new head of e-commerce who is leading the tech lab and hiring a team of 25 for it.” Read more


2016 Sam’s Club National BBQ Tour See the dates


Older adults buddy up with Amazon’s Alexa by Elizabeth O’Brien at MarketWatch. “Alexa wasn’t designed for older adults, and experts say that might be part of its appeal with that demographic. The device avoids the bland aesthetic that has traditionally characterized assistive devices, which turns off consumers who don’t self-identify as old — that is, pretty much everyone.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Kids’ jewelry sold at JC Penney, Dillard’s tested off the charts for toxic metals

Whole Foods commits to chickens that grow 23% slower

Microsoft bringing HoloLens headset to Lowe’s to visualize kitchen renovations

Williams-Sonoma will cut 5% of its workforce

The creepiest place on Earth: Inside the Disney World water park where a boy was killed by rare amoeba before it was shuttered and left to rot for 15 years

Walmart opens third training academy in Fayetteville

The Cuba Thaw Will Be Big for America’s Frozen Chickens

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