For all she has accomplished, and all the storms she has weathered over the post-feminist decades, Barbie is showing her age at 55. Sales slumped 21% for the third quarter compared to last year, Mattel reported yesterday.
What could be simpler than "good," "better" or "best" - the new rating system Whole Foods unveiled yesterday to grade the fruits, vegetables and flowers it peddles based on variables such as a supplying farms' use of pesticides, soil health, water conservation policies, clean energy use and workers' welfare.
The Nike-owned Converse brand yesterday "called foul" on 31 retailers and manufacturers including Walmart, Kmart, Skechers and H&M by filing 22 trademark infringement suits in U.S. District Court in Brooklyn. As a Huffington Post hed puts it, Converse is suing "Basically Everyone In The World Over Knockoff Chucks."
Amazon has a direct competitor, after all - the $365-billion pound gorilla named Google. En route to becoming the first trillion-dollar company by 2020, as one analyst predicts, it intends to continue to invest heavily in its redubbed Google Express same-day-delivery service, which yesterday expanded to the Chicago, Boston and Washington, D.C., metro areas.
The Dow on Friday plunged into negative territory for the year less than a month after setting a new record high but a Wall Street Journal article casting a lens on the global economy tells us that the U.S. "remains a relative bright spot in an otherwise gloomy picture."
Amazon will open its first retail outlet across from the Empire State Building - and a block east of Macy's fabled flagship at Herald Square - in time for the holiday shopping season, "The Wall Street Journal"'s Greg Bensinger and Keiko Morris report.
Glenn Murphy, who led a turnaround at the Gap that has evidently stalled, announced yesterday that he would leave the company early next year, turning over CEO duties to Art Peck, a former consultant and an eight-year veteran of the San Francisco-based retailer who currently serves as president of its growth, innovation and digital unit.
Beepi, a year-old Silicon Valley startup that is truly making lemonade out of a lemon by matching used-car buyers and sellers for 9% of the deal has raised $60 million in Series B funding from venture capital firms by targeting Millennials "who first turn to their phones to solve problems and complete transactions, such as booking hotels on HotelTonight, ordering food via GrubHub or calling for a ride with Uber," as Lizette Chapman reports in the "Wall Street Journal."
As much as the sale of the Waldorf Astoria New York yesterday is emblematic of the surge of the Chinese economy, it is also a sign of the re-emergence and enduring value of a luxury hotel brand in the wake of several soft years following the financial meltdown of 2008.
Three years after then-new CEO Meg Whitman reversed then-ousted CEO Leo Apotheker's plan to split Hewlett-Packard into two companies, the Silicon Valley stalwart intends to announce just such a rending later today. It will divide into one company selling personal computers and printers; a second will market servers, networking and other products to the corporate market, according to several stories.