Today’s Tipsheet: H.Depot Tests Video Conferencing | Wmart Invades Canada Bus Stops | Five Below Soars


“Walmart Canada & P&G Launch QR Code Campaign at Bus Stops”  by Jennifer Kwan at Yahoo.  “Here’s the idea: customers can use their mobile devices to scan posters with QR-codes at certain bus shelters to buy select items including Pantene shampoo, Pampers diapers and Tide detergent and have the goods delivered to their homes for free. The campaign will last four weeks.”  Read more:


“Home Depot testing video conferencing with on-line shoppers to sell custom kitchens” at MarketWatch.  “At a Goldman Sachs conference on Thursday, Kevin Hofmann, president of Home Depot’s online sales, said the company sees online opportunity not just on things like power tools or faucets. It’s also using it as a medium to sell larger projects from floor installation to kitchen cabinets and catering to professional contractors.  For instance, the company can send 3D renderings of kitchen design to its customers online and is testing video conferencing to engage with them beyond just an online chat.”  Read more:


“Wal-Mart’s Best Deal: A Free Talent Show” by Stock & Berfield at Businessweek.  “What does someone like Tom Cruise get out of the corporate circus, besides perhaps some free aviator sunglasses and tighty whiteys?…Consider Lions Gate Entertainment, which sells movies, TV shows, and soundtracks. Wal-Mart accounted for 38 percent of its disc sales last year, according to Securities and Exchange Commission filings. No doubt, the impact is similar for a company like United Artists, which Cruise and his production partner, Paula Wagner, took over in 2007. The pair owns 30 percent of the label.”  Read more:


“Target Introduces Simply Balanced: An Organic & Healthy Food Collection”  “Launching June 9 with the full collection to arrive in stores by October, the line features nearly 250 products, catering to those with an appetite for ingredients they want and a food label that they can understand.”  Read more:


“Sears Comps Decrease 5% in Q1”   “The comparable store sales decrease of 5.0% was comprised of a 6.9% decrease in Hometown and a 1.2% increase in Outlet. The 5.0% decrease was primarily driven by lower sales of lawn and garden in Hometown due to colder weather conditions experienced in large portions of the U.S. delaying the start of the spring/summer season. Excluding lawn and garden, the Company’s comparable store sales increased 1.4%, led by appliances and mattresses.”  Read more:


“Sears Hometown And Outlet Stores: Undervalued With Significant Growth Ahead” at Seeking Alpha.  “Sears Hometown & Outlet Stores benefits from the dealer/franchise model in the amount of control retained over product procurement, pricing, advertising, and in general how the brand is positioned and managed by the independent operators. What you see when you peel back the onion a layer or two on SHOS is a profitable company, with no debt, and the opportunity to materially expand its store count through the dealer/franchise model in place.”  Read more:


“Raley’s Investigates Possible Cyber Attack” at Supermarket News.  “Raley’s Supermarkets here said Friday it has discovered that a portion of its computer network systems may have been the target of a cyber attack.  While the company has not confirmed any unauthorized access to payment-card data, it said it has notified the FBI and initiated an investigation to determine whether anyone has obtained customer credit- and debit-card information.”  Read more:


“Analysts quiz Wal-Mart officers on market, legal issues” by Kim Souza at The City Wire.  “As other retailers have expanded heavily into consumables and grocery, analysts wanted to know if Wal-Mart management might consider focusing less on consumables and differentiating more into other product categories. They cited the fact that Costco has used that strategy and had not suffered lower traffic or sales comps.  Simon responded, “Please don’t misinterpret our focus on consumables, as a lack of focus on everything else, because the velocity of a pillow is once a year or two where bananas and milk are a weekly or twice-weekly purchase.”  The consumables drive the “velocity” (numbers) for store traffic, he added.”  Read more:


“Five Below Soars on Teen Shopping Craze” at Bloomberg.  “Shares of Philadelphia-based Five Below closed June 7 at about 49 times its estimated earnings for the next 12 months, higher than any other retailer in the Russell 2000 Index other than Office Depot Inc. (ODP), which is in the midst of a merger, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Inc. (AMZN) closed at about 70 times estimated earnings on that basis.”  Read more:


“Small-town hardware stores battle retail giants” at Cedar Valley Business.  “Ted Gehrke, 45, worked in hardware retail management for 30 years. In 2012, Gehrke decided to leave his job at Home Depot and open his own hardware store, Ted’s Home & Hardware off Lafayette Road in Evansdale.  “I was sitting in the sauna at the gym with a guy and he said, ‘You know what we need? A hardware store on the north side of town,’ and I thought ‘Aaah,'” Gehrke said.”  Read more:


Thanks for reading…


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