Tipsheet: Wmart VP Toys Presser | Costco Aug Flat | Zulily Chief Merchant Q&A | 3 S.Auth. Execs +$1.5M


Costco August comp sales flat / +2.0% excluding gas & f/x “For the 16-week fourth quarter, the Company reported net sales of $35.7 billion, an increase of two percent from $35.0 billion in the fourth quarter last year.” Press release


Amazon and Wells Fargo Terminate Student Loan Partnership by Shahien Nasiripour at Bloomberg. “It’s another black eye for Wells Fargo’s student loan business, which just last week agreed to pay $3.6 million to the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to settle claims that it misled borrowers…” Read more


Wal-Mart bets on ‘Star Wars,’ Barbie for the holidays by Krystina Gustafson at CNBC. “Star Wars” Electronic R2D2 and a new spin on Hasbro’s popular “Pie Face” game both made the retailer’s top 25 toys list, as chosen by kids…”They do tend to be our best items and they’re not always the ones we might have thought,” said Anne Marie Kehoe, vice president of toys at Walmart U.S.” Read more


…Anne Marie Kehoe, vice president of toys at Walmart U.S., held a press conference for the media Wednesday by Kim Souza at The City Wire. “To help shoppers get a jump on their holiday buying Walmart is opening its holiday layaway to the public on Sept. 2.” Read more


…US toy industry is coming off its best year in more than a decade – expecting this year to be just as strong, thanks to the “Star Wars” juggernaut by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “Besides Disney’s “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” the toy industry is anticipating a boost from other breakout films heading into the crucial holiday season. Disney’s “Moana,” about a Polynesian princess, and “Trolls” from DreamWorks Animation.” Read more


Three top executives at Sports Authority will be cashing checks for up to $1.5 million by Mark Harden at Denver Business Journal. “The Wilmington, Delaware-based judge’s approval came despite the objections of a federal bankruptcy-court watchdog official, who called the payouts “unseemly,” the Wall Street Journal reports.” Read more | WSJ article (subs.)


**A message from Dig It® Handwear – Revolutionary garden glove protection for manicured female hands! Patented line of high-quality gardening gloves has unique “pillow-top” protectors built into each fingertip. No more chipped or broken fingernails! Order now for Spring ’17 delivery. View the line at Contact to request samples.


How 7-Eleven Uses Coffee to Get People Involved With Politics by Michal Addady at Fortune. “…customers can show their support for the presidential campaign by buying specially-marked coffee cups…New this year is a non-partisan purple cup, called the “Speak Up” cup, that encourages customers to “discuss or write in their own issue—or candidate—this election.” Read more


Facebook lets retailers offer coupons to entice shoppers to buy by Zak Stambor at Internet Retailer. “Facebook Inc. has rolled out a dramatic mobile-oriented revamp of its Offers program, which enables retailers to offer consumers discounts that are redeemable either online or in store.” Read more


Q&A with Zulily chief merchant Lori Twomey by Monica Nickelsburg at GeekWire. “Night owl or early riser? What are your sleep patterns? “I get approximately 5 hours of sleep per night and am the definition of an early riser! I’m up by 4:15 a.m., meeting friends for a run or heading to the gym.” Read the Q&A


Home presses ahead despite Lowe’s’ Masters ploy by Nicole Lindsay at Sydney Morning Herald. “It was “far-fetched” to suggest the deal was in any danger, (a Home spokesman) said. Woolworths has granted Home Consortium an exclusive call option over its two-thirds share in Hydrox. Woolworths stated last week that the deal to sell the property portfolio was “subject to Lowe’s consent”. Read more


Amazon brings its Dash Button to Germany, Austria, and the UK by Amar Toor at The Verge. “Amazon is also launching its Dash Replenishment service in the three countries…Under the Dash Replenishment program, makers of connected devices can program appliances to automatically reorder household items such as laundry detergent or dish soap…” Read more


Retailers respond to widening U.S. income gap in school supply sales by Rachel Abrams at NY Times via Star Tribune. “Our people said that whether it’s Burlington or Target or J.C. Penney or Sears, the uniform section was the hottest part of the competitive space for back-to-school,” said Craig Johnson, president of Customer Growth Partners, a retail consulting group. “About twice as many stores this year as last are doing specials on uniforms.” Read more


Walmart to Participate in the 23rd Annual Goldman Sachs Global Retailing Conference Press release


American Girl dolls are heading to Toys ’R’ Us by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “It marks the first time American Girl will be sold in brick-and-mortar locations outside its own stores…Sales plunged 19 percent in the latest quarter ended June — worse than the 8 percent drop in 2015.” Read more


Forbes: Amazon Has Already Gobbled Up Books, Electronics: Are Fashion And Beauty Next? by Barbara Thau. Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

Ex-Gap Exec & Current POM President Named Stone Brewing’s new CEO

Belk’s Crown & Ivy to open its first standalone store

Inside Oregon’s hop mecca (21 pics)

Chef went temporarily deaf after eating the world’s hottest noodles

Instacart’s app has changed grocery stores for good

Tim Hortons to expand into Great Britain

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories


QUICK-SUBSCRIBE to Eye on Retail Tipsheet here