The challenges facing many retail giants are abundant in today’s edition. Amazon has been issued with a ruling holding it responsible for defective goods sold by third-party vendors, Walmart is losing profit trying to keep pace with Amazon, and sportswear giants Nike and Adidas have found themselves entangled in racist promotions. Enjoy the read!




Thursday, 04 July 2019





Hello ,

The challenges facing many retail giants are abundant in today’s edition. Amazon has been issued with a ruling holding it responsible for defective goods sold by third-party vendors, Walmart is losing profit trying to keep pace with Amazon, and sportswear giants Nike and Adidas have found themselves entangled in racist promotions. Enjoy the read!

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United States


Feeling the pinch ▪ Walmart’s investment efforts to remain competitive with rival Amazon have had a massive impact on its profitability, with the retail giant now predicting losses of USD 1 billion. In an attempt to mitigate the loss, the big-box retailer is reportedly looking to sell recently acquired clothing brands Bonobos and Modcloth.



Trouble brewing ▪ A US appeals court has ruled that Amazon can be held liable for faulty products that are sold on its platform by third-party retailers, leaving the online powerhouse open to considerable legal action. Amazon has also confirmed that customers' voice recordings using virtual assistant Alexa are kept indefinitely.



Opening up ▪ October 25, 2019 is the date finally confirmed for the opening of American Dream, the 3 million square foot mega-mall which will feature experiential retail as well as water, snow and theme parks. In San Francisco, embattled luxury home-wear brand Gump’s gets a second chance, after filing for bankruptcy last year.




Europe


Grim outlook ▪ Beset British supermarket Sainsbury’s has reported a sales drop for a third consecutive quarter, and CEO Mike Coupe isn’t expecting a change in fortune anytime soon. Coupe also warned of a dire Christmas season in the event of a no-deal Brexit, with supplies of toys and electronics likely to be affected.



Discounter delight ▪ Lidl has come up trumps in France, with the latest round of figures showing the German retailer increased its market share to 5.9% and drew in 460,000 new customers over the survey period.



Sustainability matters ▪ British consumer goods retailer The Co-operative is ramping up its plans to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions in line with international benchmarks to curb global warming. In Italy, Gruppo VéGé is working to release a new smartphone app to cut food waste, which it estimates reaches 1.3 billion tonnes globally.



Non-food expertise ▪ Russia’s X5 Retail Group has teamed up with home-wear brand Hoff to trial a ‘shop-in-shop’ format in prominent Karusel stores to offer customers greater product choice beyond food and drink.




Asia & Australasia


Pulling out ▪ Samsung has withdrawn an AI-powered shopping app that was pre-installed on its smartphones sold in India. While the app reached close to 10 million downloads, it wasn’t as popular as the tech company had expected.



Market expansion ▪ New Zealand tea brand Ti Ora has been picked up by Dutch beverage giant Jacobs Douwe Egberts (JDE) who intends to promote the product in selected European countries and the US. Ti Ora translates to ‘tea of wellbeing’ in Maori and comes in biodegradable packaging.




Sportswear nightmares


Bots gone wrong ▪ Adidas has been left with a red face after a social media campaign, which relied on artificial intelligence, went horribly wrong and saw the retail giant’s UK Twitter account posting anti-Semitic tweets and other offensive slurs to over 800,000 people.



Racist sneaker ▪ Nike is facing controversy over the recall of a special Fourth of July shoe that featured an early American flag and copped criticism by some, including Nike endorser Colin Kaepernick, who voiced concern that the symbol was synonymous with the slavery era. Right wing politicians are calling for a boycott of the company and removal of funding for its apparent kowtowing to political correctness.