Wednesday Tipsheet: Wmart: Building ‘Aisle Robot’ / Plucks 65 from eBay | W.Foods Probe | Target Drops Halloween Costume


Wal-Mart to impose charges on suppliers as its costs mount by Nathan Layne at Reuters. “For instance, Wal-Mart is seeking to charge a food supplier 10 percent of the value of inventory shipped to new stores and to new warehouses, both one-time charges, and 1 percent to hold inventory in existing warehouses, according to a copy of amended terms seen by Reuters.” Read more


Walmart Working on Robot to Patrol the Aisles by Kim Souza at The City Wire. “(Rick) Webb said Wal-Mart is working fast on a robot that will be soon patrol the aisles of local stores as the retailer tests its ability to scan products, check for out-of-stocks and report the findings. He said this is just the tip of the iceberg for where automated technology is going in the retail world and elsewhere. Webb said Wal-Mart is working with technology group out of Pennsylvania on the robot project.” Read more


Fortune: Shoplifting, worker theft cost retailers $32 billion last year by Phil Wahba at Fortune. “Shrinkage, along with administrative errors, cost U.S retailers about 1.4% of their 2014 sales, according to the report…According to a survey conducted last spring of senior loss-prevention executives at many retailers, shoplifting accounted for 38% of the shrinkage, followed by employee theft at 34.5%.” Read more


Ahold and Delhaize announce intention to merge via CNBC. “Dutch-based supermarkets operator Ahold said on Wednesday it is to buy Belgian peer Delhaize in an all-share merger, with Ahold taking a 61 percent stake in the new company.” Read more


Deloitte Study: About 4 out of 10 respondents said they view buying store branded items as a sacrifice, up 10 percentage points from the year before via CNBC. Read more


Hank Meijer anticipates ‘substantially more’ Wisconsin stores, eyes Madison market by Alison Bauter at Milwaukee Business Journal. “The CEO said his company is now looking in Madison, as well as Green Bay and other points across the state. It’s part of Meijer’s broader expansion across the Midwest, from Cleveland in the east out to Minneapolis in the west, he said. Short term, aside from its other Wisconsin openings, Meijer is eyeing Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.” Read more


Paper: Whole Foods chain faces city probe after investigators found ‘worst case of overcharges’ by Sarah Ryley & Reuven Blau at NY Daily News. “Inspectors weighed 80 different types of items at Whole Foods’ eight locations in (NYC) that were open at the time. They found every label was inaccurate…Whole Foods, according to the city, wasn’t the only bad apple. The sweep included 120 grocery stores citywide, and 77% were hit with one or more violations.” Read more


CVS Health Announces New Chief Marketing Officer  Read the release


What is that mysterious Amazon Treasure Truck driving around Seattle? by Emily Parkhurst at Puget Sound Business Journal. “It’s likely the truck is part of some kind of promotional stunt, possibly to drive signups for Amazon Prime. The truck has its own Twitter account, @treasuretruck, and all it says in the description is “Hello Seattle, Treasure Truck is on its way.” The account tweeted that it was coming to Seattle soon on Tuesday afternoon.Read more


Why Walmart crushed Target in Canada by Hollie Shaw at Financial Post. “A new report from real estate firm Colliers International reveals sales per square foot at Target Canada were $97 in 2013, compared with Walmart Canada’s average of $492 per square foot.” Read more


J.C.Penney CEO Marvin Ellison Presents at Oppenheimer Consumer Conference via Seeking Alpha Read the Transcript


Wal-Mart Scours eBay for Tech Talent by Kim Nash at WSJ. “Wal-Mart is shopping at eBay Inc., hiring away at least 65 technology professionals recently as it buys the talent needed to compete in e-commerce…In the last two years alone, at least 49 such experts have left eBay for Wal-Mart, according to research by CIO Journal.” Read more (Subscription)


Target pulls Confederate Halloween costume from website by Jim Hammerand at Minn./St. Paul Business Journal. “Our intention is never to offend,” spokeswoman Molly Snyder said. “We all recognize the great sensitivity around this and have removed that one item from our website.” Read more


Alibaba gives up on Amazon rival after a year by Tricia Duryee at GeekWire. “That’s even more the case following today’s news that it is giving up on 11 Main, an online retail site it launched a year ago that was focused on selling a wide variety of items, including home, fashion, jewelry and crafts.” Read more


Tipsheet Extra

Nordstrom now has five women on its board

Wal-Mart CEO McMillon: ‘Double Bottom Line’ Exists (Video)

Staples merger unlikely after judge blocks Sysco/US Foods union

Penner, McMillon relationship ‘crucial’ to long-term Wal-Mart success

Younger Americans Fear Other Drivers More Than Death, Public Speaking and Spiders

Shocking Values program: Sam’s Club the first wholesale retailer to offer an online daily deal program

H-E-B /Publix /Trader Joe’s Earn Top Emotion Scores In Temkin Group Research

The Best Time of Day to do Everything at Work

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories



Eye-on-Retail Tipsheet is created early every weekday morning and read by retail merchants and executives worldwide. We love data, earnings reports, executive presentations and stories off the beaten path that get at what’s really happening in the world of retail. See our website at