Tag: retail

Grand Closing: Topshop to Shutter All U.S. Stores

A Topshop store window on London’s Oxford Street.Photo: Dinendra Haria (SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images) By now, we’re all well-acquainted with the power of the Fenty Effect, but did the Beyoncé backlash contribute to the closing of Topshop’s U.S. stores? On Thursday, the beleaguered U.K.-based brand announced that after a decade in the U.S., it […]

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Ossia and T-Mobile pilot wireless-charging asset trackers in Walmart warehouses

True wireless charging at a distance has arrived — you just can’t buy it yet. But companies like Ossia are making progress, buoyed by industrial and enterprise players. In September 2018, the Bellevue, Washington-based startup said it would team up with Walmart to help the retailer cut costs in its thousands of stores, Ossia’s fourth […]

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Revenue Analytics raises $11 million to predict product pricing with AI

Imagine you’re a retailer with a diverse clientele. To whom should you extend a promotion when a product isn’t flying off the shelves, and how steep should the discount be? Atlanta, Georgia-based Revenue Analytics would argue that machine learning algorithms hold the answer to those questions. That shouldn’t be surprising — AI has been the […]

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NexTech AR tool watches your face as you shop, pitches when you smile

Your smartphone is an ideal shopping tool — always with you and armed with a rear camera that captures things you might want to buy. Now imagine its front camera looking back at you, judging your reaction to what you’re seeing and taking your smile as a cue to urge you to make a purchase. […]

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$4 billion in ad spend shows growth in Google’s responsive search ads, Instagram story ads

Intelligence and ephemeral social are two of the biggest drivers of evolving ad spend, according to a Q1 digital advertising benchmark report this week from Marin Software. Unsurprisingly, the intelligence piece comes from Google, and the social comes from Facebook. Marin says that there’s been a major increase in search marketers using Google’s responsive search ads, […]

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Khronos and major retailers partner on universal 3D objects for AR and VR

It’s easy to find multiple 2D images of virtually any product you might want to buy online, but 3D representations are another story — relatively few retailers offer 3D models of their furniture or clothing. That could change in the near future, as OpenXR standard developer Khronos has announced that it’s working with a significant […]

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Vue.ai raises $17 million for AI-driven retail products

AI in commerce is a fast-growing — and highly lucrative — industry. A recent report published by Juniper Research predicts that global retail spending on AI and machine learning will reach $7.3 billion per year by 2022, up from an estimated $2 billion in 2018. Stores with and without brick-and-mortar presences cite cost savings, increased […]

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Google’s new AI tools scan documents, take phone calls, and search for products

With enterprise adoption of AI on the rise (up 270 percent over the past four years, according to Gartner), it’s only sensible that Google should chase corporate clients with new cloud services powered by machine learning. At its eponymous Google Cloud Next conference in San Francisco this week, the company took the wraps off of […]

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Mirakl raises $70 million to facilitate ecommerce sales with software

Mirakl, a Paris-based software company that develops ecommerce solutions for corporate and retail clients, isn’t shy about throwing its weight around in the $50.8 billion software-as-a-service (SaaS) enterprise app market. Case in point? It today announced that it’s secured $70 million in series B financing led by Bain Capital, with participation from existing investors 83North, […]

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Apple will reportedly close 2 stores to avoid an infamous Texas patent court

With over 500 retail stores worldwide, Apple’s opening or closing plans for individual stores typically aren’t noteworthy, but the company appears to have an unusual motive behind the closure of two locations in eastern Texas: It’s reportedly attempting to sever business contacts near a court that is often preferred by patent trolls. According to MacRumors, […]

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What happens to Apple’s stores when Angela Ahrendts leaves?

When Apple announced yesterday that Deirdre O’Brien will become its Senior Vice President of Retail and People, it focused on the positive side of a fairly shocking revelation — the company’s much-admired retail chief Angela Ahrendts is leaving after only five years. Having covered Apple for a long time, I found the news of Ahrendts’ departure […]

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Apple’s Deirdre O’Brien will replace Angela Ahrendts as SVP of Retail

Apple’s retail chief Angela Ahrendts is leaving in April, the company announced today, and will be replaced by Deirdre O’Brien — currently Vice President of People — in a combined role as Senior Vice President of Retail and People. Like Ahrendts, O’Brien will report directly to Apple CEO Tim Cook. Ahrendts joined Apple five years ago […]

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Returnly raises $8 million to streamline customer returns

Returnly, a San Francisco-based company that works with retailers and brands to handle post-purchase payments, said today it has raised $8 million in series A funding and secured a credit facility that will enable it to finance over $300 million in repurchases. The funding round was led by Mundi Ventures and The Venture City, with […]

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Whose robot is this and where did all the employees go?

Sometimes it feels like the employees are disappearing from stores. Amazon has started rolling out cashier-less stores that use cameras and other high-tech sensors to track what shoppers take. Walmart now has “pick-up towers” that act as in-store vending machines for online orders. Tech has started to fuse with the traditional world of brick-and-mortar stores, […]

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Pensa Systems uses autonomous drones to track store inventory

There’s perhaps no retail task more time-consuming than taking stock of merchandise. Inventory tracking — that is, figuring out which products are in stock, which stock is likely to run low in the next week, and so on — is a never-ending battle, as shoppers spend an estimated 40 billion hours picking things off store […]

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AiFi markets NanoStore, a tiny white-label cashierless store

Cashierless stores are all the rage. You need look no further for evidence than Amazon’s rapidly expanding Amazon Go chain and the tens of millions of VC dollars startups like Trigo Vision and Zippin have snatched up in the past year. Some, like Grabango, offer plug-and-play systems designed to accommodate warehouse-style installations — i.e., stores […]

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Vuzix will ship $1,000 consumer Blade AR smart glasses in February

Following last year’s release of an enterprise version of Blade, a pair of augmented reality smart glasses that resemble traditional sunglasses, Vuzix today confirmed dates and pricing for its consumer model. Previously referred to as “Blade General,” the retail version of Blade is available for preorder today at $1,000, and shipping in 4-6 weeks. Unlike […]

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Millennials Don’t Love Capitalism but Can’t Stop Using Amazon

Image composite by Lia Kantrowitz. Photo by Westend61/Getty Images/Photo of Jeff Bezos by SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images In the ground-level apartment in Des Moines, Iowa, where Reid Chandler, 27, and Kelly Parker, 30, once lived as roommates, Amazon was practically a third resident. “We would have an Amazon box outside of our door almost every day,” said […]

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How Yummly is monetizing AI-powered personalization (VB Live)

From right-message, right-time targeting to contextual conversation that delivers personalized results, customers expect high-value service and attention — and AI and machine learning can help you deliver. To learn more about leveraging AI to be super-relevant and make engagement meaningful, and more, catch up on this VB Live event with execs from Yummly, Eharmony, and […]

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Facebook: VR will be a daily shopping and socializing tool

When Facebook acquired virtual reality headset developer Oculus back in 2014, there was no shortage of speculation that the social network’s goal was to generate advertising revenue inside VR headsets. Backed by a survey of 11,300 people across 11 countries, a newly posted Facebook report for marketers suggests how those dollars will be made: by enabling […]

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