Today’s Tipsheet: Test: Target (Groc.) in Minnetonka, Kroger (‘Smart Shelf’) in Cold Spring | Costco Nears $5 Bil in Ecom | Amazon Jumps to #10


Kroger tests ‘smart shelf’ technology by Alexander Coolidge at Cincinnati Enquirer. “Kroger’s test is expanding from a few shelves to most of its Cold Spring store on Crossroads Boulevard. The company is completing the installation of 2,200 Edge shelves…future applications could include providing on-demand nutritional info when shoppers touch the shelf below an item. Kroger officials can easily see a day when the shelves can talk to shoppers’ smart phones. See it in-store / Read more


Target uses Minnetonka store for tests while grocery makeover is in progress by Kavita Kumar at Star Tribune. “Target officials say they need more time to hash out and test ideas — 2017 is the new rollout time…When shoppers now enter that store, they see a new kiosk on wheels — reminiscent of a kitchen cart one might find at Williams-Sonoma…The Minnetonka store now has whimsical phrases such as “snack happy” and “ok to crave” above displays of better-for-you snacks.” Read more


Amazon jumps to #10 on best global brand list by Ritika Shah at CNBC. See the top 40 list


Costco closes in on $5 billion in annual web sales by Mark Brohan at Internet Retailer. “E-commerce grew 20%. Based on that metric Internet Retailer estimates that web sales reached $4.49 billion compared with $3.73 billion in fiscal 2014.” Read more


J.C. Penney cuts its pension obligation by Maria Halkias at Dallas News. “J.C. Penney on Friday said it has cut its $5 billion pension obligation by more than 25 percent by making lump-sum offers to 12,000 retirees and by buying annuities for 43,000 retirees.” Read more


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Sam’s Club announces top level job shifts, new focus on merchandise at The City Wire. “Brewer said the four “key elements” of the new focus are:
• Grow with higher household-income members and four high-value business segments;
• Drive relevant merchandise and deliver better value for our members;
• Acquire and retain the right members in the club and increase their spend, and
• Transform the club experience with digital.  Read more / See the org changes


Home Depot’s Mike Hibbison Touts Radio at Radio Ink. “Hibbison: “We have radio playing in all of our stores. Our customers like it. It’s in everything we do. It’s the one medium that’s stood the test of time.” Hibbison even gave remotes some love. “We still do them. They work for us. Our Atlanta manager said his traffic tripled after a radio remote. It’s old school but it still works.” Read more


Ad Age: Target Reviews Shops as It Expands Internal Programmatic Function by Alexandra Bruell. “(Target) is “focused on expansion of Target’s internal, modern CRM and data-driven marketing capabilities by considering partnerships in the following key areas: platform capability for cross-channel media activation (Programmatic, Social, Video, etc), complementary audience development and measurement and reporting products,” said a Target spokeswoman.” Read more


Chicago: Restoration Hardware’s Gold Coast showroom has to be seen to be believed by Brigid Sweeney at Chicago Crain’s. “The Chicago location “is the most controversial and ambitious project we’ve ever undertaken,” he said…an hour before (CEO) Friedman’s plane was about to take off to go back home to California, he decided to swing by the building at 1300 N. Dearborn. “I immediately said, ‘I think this is it,’ ” he remembered. “The building was a mess, but I still had goosebumps.” Read more / See the in-store pics


Happened Friday: Home Depot’s Craig Menear Appears on CNBC “Craig Menear, chairman, CEO and president of The Home Depot, was joined by Douglas C. Yearley, Jr., CEO and director of Toll Brothers, Michael B. Polk, president and CEO of Newell Rubbermaid and Chris Peel, COO of Rheem Manufacturing Company, to discuss the future of the home.” See the video / Read more


Man Admits to Smuggling $13M in Cigarettes Out of Virginia by Scott MacFarlane at NBC News 4. “I-Team cameras captured footage of Chen making bulk purchases at northern Virginia Sam’s Club and Costco stores. In one of those shopping trips, Chen purchased approximately $70,000 in tobacco.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra

Mattel’s high-tech attempt to save Barbie this Christmas

These 27 Young Influentials Are Shaking Up Media, Marketing, Tech and Entertainment

Costco Auto predicts GM promotion sales will top 52,000

Washington Post: Paul Allen’s $500 million quest to dissect the mind and code a new one from scratch

Last gun store closing for good in San Francisco

Costco executive strives for happy employees, members

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories


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