Tipsheet: Wmart Hires Ex-Target Agency | Kroger Stock Plummet? | Facebook Pop-Up | China’s Excess Malls


Retailers weren’t panicking at the end of the holiday season — here’s how you can tell by Krystina Gustafson at CNBC. “…while retail discounts remained rampant over the holidays, they also held steady in the days after Christmas — serving as the latest indication that the 2016 season may have topped original expectations.” Read more


Walmart Shifts Massive Media Account to Target’s Former Agency Haworth by Jack Neff at Ad Age. “Haworth has a longtime relationship with Michael Francis, the former Target chief marketing officer who worked with the agency for years there. Then Mr. Francis brought Haworth on board at Dreamworks Animation during his three-year stint as CMO there, which ended in August 2015, less than five months before he began work as a consultant with Walmart.” Read more


It’s alive: Amazon’s drive-up grocery store in Seattle lights up — but still no word on opening by Nat Levy at GeekWire. “A series of what look like cords coming out of the paneling indicate crews may soon put up a sign, which would be Amazon’s first public acknowledgment of the store.” Pics/Read more


Why Kroger is one of analyst’s six picks to plummet (Walmart too…) by Steve Watkins at Cincinnati Business Courier. Read more


Amazon launches individual marketplace pilot in India, will pick up and ship items for sellers by Nat Levy at GeekWire. “Not only is it providing the marketplace, Amazon is also taking care of the logistics. According to the website for the new Sell as an Individual pilot program, first spotted by Mashable, after a transaction is completed, Amazon will pick up the items, pack them up and ship them to the buyer.” Read more


Here come ‘smart stores’ with robots, interactive shelves by Anne d’Innocenzio at AP via Yahoo. Read more


Amazon Air-Cargo Operator Buys Repair Shop by Doug Cameron at Wall Street Journal. “One of the two providers to the fledgling Inc. air-cargo operation has acquired an aircraft-maintenance business that ultimately could compete with Boeing Co. in converting passenger planes for cargo use.” Read more (subscription)


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Wal-Mart names Dann Moore new regional general manager to oversee 110 Cincinnati stores by Kaitlin Schroeder at Dayton Business Journal. Read more


China Has Too Many Shopping Malls by Dominique Fong at Wall Street Journal. “Chongqing’s glut of shopping malls is a vivid sign of a big miscalculation now imperiling China’s retail economy. For the past five years, developers have been churning out new supply at a record pace on the assumption that the growth of the country’s middle class would greatly boost shopping and create enormous demand among retailers for store space.” Read more (subscription)


Amazon doubles deliveries in 2016 for third-party sellers by Jeffrey Dastin at Reuters. “Active sellers using the fulfillment service rose more than 70 percent in the year, Amazon said on Wednesday. It did not specify the total number of vendors.” Read more


FACEBOOK POP-UP: Facebook virtual-reality tour makes immersive stop at Denver airport by Tumara Chuang at Denver Post. “The curious can try on a pair of Samsung Gear VR goggles for free to get a better sense of what immersive 360-degree video feels like. Facebook has attendees on hand between 10 to 6 p.m. daily.” Pics/Read more


Why Amazon is so secretive: Longtime board member explains the company’s mindset by Dan Richman at GeekWire. “(Bezos) likes to say you get the investors you ask for, meaning that if you focus on 2 cents more profit per quarter, then you get investors who focus on that.” Read more


Wal-Mart, Liverpool Seen Hardest Hit by Gas Hikes in Mexico by Michelle Davis at Bloomberg. “Mexican consumer companies from Wal-Mart de Mexico SAB to El Puerto de Liverpool SAB may see sales flag when the country raises gasoline prices by as much as 20 percent in January.” Read more


Aldi accused of racial vilification over Christmas ad depicting Americans as ‘gaudy’ and ‘pushy’ by Bruce McDougall at The Daily Telegraph. “In it the Tinkletons, clad in Christmas attire, run amok through a house of “normal” Australians throwing decorations and singing. The Americans are convinced their Christmas is better than Australia’s but they are up against perfect Aussie weather, backyard barbies, days at the beach and seafood feasts.” Read more


AMAZON SPHERE UPDATE – Lush nature paradise to adorn $4 billion urban campus by Angel Gonzalez at Seattle Times. “A recent walk through the Spheres showed construction is well along. A towering concrete wall is in place that next year will be a canvas to luxuriant vegetation. So are the five stories through which more than 800 Amazonians at a time will be able to roam.” Read more


Nike signs No. 1 golfer Jason Day by Matthew Kish at Portland Business Journal. Read more


Mattel is building an Alexa for kids by Mark Wilson at Fast Company. “Aristotle will have various retail partners, but it’s also compatible—rather than competitive—with Amazon’s Alexa service. So in what Mattel calls “parent mode,” anything a parent would ask Alexa can be asked through Aristotle. They simply begin a question with “Alexa” rather than “Aristotle”.” Read more


George Lucas Can’t Give His $1.5 Billion Museum Away by Devin Leonard at Bloomberg. “The monumental project has brought him almost as much grief as Jar Jar Binks, the prequel creature from the planet Naboo with an oddly Jamaican accent that some found racially offensive. Lucas tried to build in San Francisco’s Presidio, which is a national park, and then on Chicago’s downtown waterfront, only to abandon both sites after being assailed by local forces.” Read more


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Struggling watch seller Tourneau having trouble finding a buyer

Woody Harrelson Eyed to Play Han Solo’s Mentor in ‘Star Wars’ Spinoff

Toby Keith’s “I Love This Bar” #1 with drunk drivers in Massachusetts

After 122 years, historic Minnesota general store goes out of business

Jack in the Box Tacos Have Been Described as ‘Cat Food’ But Americans Eat 554 Mil Each Year

Amazon Fire and Alexa-powered 4K UHD TVs coming later this year

Man murdered inside Tomball Walmart

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories


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