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News Briefs

Staying on top of breaking news in the retail industry is a commitment Retail TouchPoints editors take seriously. Each day, we publish the latest information in this News Briefs section. Up-to-the-minute stories cover retail implementations, new product announcements, financial updates, executive appointments and overall global updates affecting every aspect of the retail industry.

#Shoptalk17: Instagram Rolls Out Shopping Feature

#Shoptalk17: Instagram Rolls Out Shopping Feature

March 22 // Written by Glenn Taylor

Ginza Six Mall Deploys Indoor Positioning System

Ginza Six Mall Deploys Indoor Positioning System

March 17 // Written by Glenn Taylor

Theatro To Unveil Virtual Voice Assistant At Shoptalk
Chase Acquires MCX Technology For Its Digital Wallet
RadioShack Files For Bankruptcy A Second Time

RadioShack Files For Bankruptcy A Second Time

March 10 // Written by Glenn Taylor

Is Third Time The Charm For Troubled Wet Seal Brand?

Is Third Time The Charm For Troubled Wet Seal Brand?

March 06 // Written by Glenn Taylor

How Groupon, eBay and Jet Scale New Mobile Partnerships

How Groupon, eBay and Jet Scale New Mobile Partnerships

March 06 // Written by Klaudia Tirico

Boomerang Commerce Unveils Newest Pricing Application
BCBG Max Azria Goes Bankrupt…Is hhgregg Next?

BCBG Max Azria Goes Bankrupt…Is hhgregg Next?

March 03 // Written by Glenn Taylor

#ShopTalk17: Target Debuts New Store Prototype; 2017 Will Be The Year Of eGrocery

This year’s Shoptalk event wowed attendees with a lot of cutting-edge, innovative announcements — from Instagram’s new shopping feature to new digital capabilities from retailers Jos. A Bank and Pottery Barn. Another can’t-miss moment was when Target CEO Brian Cornell unveiled a next-generation store format, which is scheduled to debut…
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Bebe Reportedly Closing All Stores To Become E-Commerce Only

  • Published in News Briefs
Fashion retailer bebe stores is exploring strategic alternatives for its besieged business, with a report from Bloomberg indicating that bebe plans to close all 170 of its stores. The report noted that the brand will focus solely on its e-Commerce operations going forward. Although the company is trying to close the…
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PIM Software Provider Akeneo Secures $13 Million

Akeneo, an open-source product information management (PIM) software provider founded in France in 2013, has raised $13 million from investors Partech Ventures and Alven Capital. The company plans to use the new funding to double its R&D team and accelerate international sales.

#Shoptalk17: Instagram Rolls Out Shopping Feature

  • Published in News Briefs
Instagram made a big splash at Shoptalk 2017, unveiling that it is expanding its Instagram Shopping feature to all fashion, apparel, jewelry and skincare brands using the commerce platforms BigCommerce and Shopify. The functionality is expected to roll out in Q2 2017. “People are in this discovery mind-set [on Instagram] and…
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Foursquare Offers Foot Traffic Analytics To Retailers, Restaurants

  • Published in News Briefs
Foursquare has released Foursquare Analytics, a dashboard designed to give retailers and restaurants greater visibility into location intelligence. With the platform, analysts gain a better understanding of changing store visit patterns and their share of consumer visits. The platform uses Foursquare’s Places database — which powers more than 100,000 mobile…
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#Shoptalk17: Jos. A Bank and Pottery Barn Show Off Enhanced E-Commerce Capabilities

  • Published in News Briefs
Men’s apparel retailer Jos. A Bank and home furnishings seller Pottery Barn have been busy showing off their respective new digital capabilities this week at Shoptalk 2017.  Jos. A Bank expanded its e-Commerce product vocabulary by implementing the Edgecase Product Intelligence Platform. The retailer announced the platform implementation has created more…
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Uber President Jeff Jones Resigns

Less than seven months after stepping in as Uber’s President to integrate the brand’s marketing and operations functions, Jeff Jones is leaving the ride services company. Jones arrived at Uber from Target, where he had most recently served as the retailer’s EVP and CMO since 2012. In early March, Uber launched a search for a Chief Operating Officer to help run the company alongside CEO Travis Kalanick. Jones oversaw operating responsibilities during his duty, but a new COO would have jumped Jones’ post as second in command to Kalanick.

Discounting Errors Cost 114 E-Commerce Retailers $9.2 Million In 2016

Retailers’ recent forays into deep discounting may be costing them profits in more ways than one. In 2016, 114 e-Commerce retailers missed $9.24 million in revenue by miscalculating the optimal percentile in which to discount items, according to analysis from fashion data platform provider EDITED. The women’s luxury goods category…
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Kmart President Alasdair James Steps Down

More worrisome news for Sears Holdings. Kmart President and Chief Member Officer Alasdair James has left the company, according to Business Insider. James is the third executive to leave the company in recent months. Sears’ EVP Jeffrey Balagna and Sears President and Chief Member Officer Joelle Maher both departed in December 2016. Business Insider has reported that only 11 people are left on Sears’ senior management team.

Ginza Six Mall Deploys Indoor Positioning System

Ginza Six, a 500,000-square-foot retail complex in Tokyo, Japan opening April 20, 2017, has installed StepInside, an indoor positioning system (IPS) from Senion. StepInside is designed to help shoppers navigate the massive facility using their smartphones by showing them the shortest route to their destination. Ginza Six expects more than…
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WePay Expands Apple Pay, Android Pay Mobile Functionality

WePay, an integrated payments platform provider, has enabled its retail customers to integrate Apple Pay and Android Pay within their mobile e-Commerce sites. These newly integrated payment methods are designed to address poor web experiences that have made it difficult to check out online. Instead of having to manually enter…
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Jet.com Set To Acquire ModCloth

Walmart has reeled in yet another e-Commerce brand as part of its recent buying spree: ModCloth. Jet.com — the first of Walmart’s recent major e-Commerce acquisitions — will acquire ModCloth for an undisclosed sum. Although the acquisition has not been confirmed by either Walmart or ModCloth, the brands will publicly announce the move on March 17, according to an initial report from Jezebel.

JCPenney CMO Leaving To Become Hershey’s Chief Growth Officer

Only two years after taking the position in April 2015, JCPenney Chief Customer & Marketing Officer Mary Beth West will step down on April 1. West will join The Hershey Company as its new Senior VP and Chief Growth Officer on May 1. In her brief tenure at JCPenney, West spearheaded the “Get Your Penney’s Worth” marketing campaign, which emphasized private label brands and included select deals for only a penny. JCPenney designed the campaign to bring the retailer out of a massive hole that saw the brand lose $4 billion in market cap in the early 2010s.

Flow Raises $13 Million To Expand Cross-Border Platform

Cross-border commerce platform provider Flow has secured a $13 million Series A funding round from Bain Capital Ventures. The funds will be used to expand the cloud-based platform to global retailers and brands. Flow expects to announce additional retailer and brand partners in the coming months. Flow is designed to bring international consumers a localized shopping experience that mirrors shopping from a domestic merchant. Additionally, the platform enables merchants to ship product from anywhere to anywhere in a cost-efficient manner, by automating end-to-end workflows across pricing, translation, landed cost, payments and logistics.

Theatro To Unveil Virtual Voice Assistant At Shoptalk

  • Published in News Briefs
Theatro will host a live demo of its new virtual voice-assisted selling app at Shoptalk 2017, March 19-22 in Las Vegas. The voice-assisted selling capabilities are designed to enable every store associate to upsell and cross-sell additional products within the store. “Shoppers are more connected than ever to instant meaningful…
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REVTECH Announces 2017 Graduate Accelerator Program Participants

  • Published in News Briefs
REVTECH (Retail Technology Ventures), a retail technology accelerator focused on early-stage innovation, has announced the seven companies that will be participating in its 2017 REVTECH Graduate Program. The theme for this year’s program is “AI, Automation, and Analytics — Vital Tools for Retailers in the Age of Amazon.” The REVTECH…
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Neiman Marcus To Explore Alternatives: Sale On The Horizon?

After yet another dismal quarter that saw revenue drop 6.1%, comparable store sales dip 6.8% and $117 million in net losses, Neiman Marcus revealed that it has hired advisers to help the brand explore and evaluate potential strategic alternatives, including a possible sale. Hudson’s Bay, owner of Lord & Taylor and Saks Fifth Avenue, has entered exploratory talks about acquiring Neiman Marcus, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal. The Canadian department store chain is seeking a deal that would give it control of the business without including Neiman Marcus' $5 billion in debt.

Walgreens Fills Top Marketing And Merchandising Posts

Only a few days after filling its recently vacated CIO role from within, Walgreens took additional steps to fill out its C-suite, promoting Adam Holyk to Chief Marketing Officer and Joe Hartsig to Chief Merchandising Officer. Holyk and Hartsig will report to Alex Gourlay, Co-COO for Walgreens Boots Alliance. The two executives will replace Linda Filler, who served as President of Retail Products and Chief Merchandising and Marketing Officer at Walgreens Boots Alliance, on April 1.

Chase Acquires MCX Technology For Its Digital Wallet

The long strange trip of the Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX), a retailer-led consortium that was supposed to provide an alternative to traditional payment cards, has taken yet another turn. JPMorgan Chase has acquired MCX’s payment technology to expand Chase Pay, the bank’s digital wallet product. Chase Pay launched in November…
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Gordmans, Gander Mountain Catch The Bankruptcy Bug

Bankruptcies continue to plague the retail landscape, with Gordmans and Gander Mountain the latest merchants to voluntarily file for Chapter 11. While “all Gordmans stores are operating as usual without interruption,” according to CEO Andy Hall, Gander plans on closing 32 retail locations as part of its restructuring. Gordmans has entered an agreement with Tiger Capital Group, LLC and Great American Group, LLC to liquidate its inventory and other assets of its retail stores and distribution centers.

53% Of Manufacturers Use Marketplaces To Avoid Channel Conflict

B2B manufacturers are often cautious about establishing their own e-Commerce presence, due to fears about alienating retailers and other distributors. To avoid these channel conflicts, more than half (53%) of suppliers use third-party marketplaces to foster direct connections with consumers, according to a study conducted by Forrester Consulting and commissioned…
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RadioShack Files For Bankruptcy A Second Time

RadioShack has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, marking the second time in more than two years that the beleaguered consumer electronics brand has taken the drastic step to reconsider its future. General Wireless Operations Inc., operator of the RadioShack brand, filed for bankruptcy protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. The retailer is closing approximately 200 stores and said it isevaluating…
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