retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Responding to Michael Sansolo's column last week about the e-commerce threat, one MNB user wrote:

I met an honest-to-goodness Millennial this weekend — a 29-year-old friend of my son who is a PhD student at the Wharton School. His wife is a PhD student at Penn. I know PhD students are not exactly brimming with ready cash (my daughter is one, too). So I was a little surprised when he said that they get all their groceries from Fresh Direct. He wasn’t the least concerned about the fee he pays to have groceries delivered to his center city apartment in Philadelphia, and said it was so much better than going to the supermarket and having to drag the food home. He also mentioned that he saved them “15 or 20 minutes” in the store. I think your concern about e-commerce as a threat to bricks-and-mortar is not at all wrong. A demographic that will one day have some real money to spend looks like they are spending more and more online.



We had a piece the other day about how Walmart is testing a system of dealing with shoplifters that depends on a private kind of justice rather than going through law enforcement. (And we don;t mean taking them out and shooting them.)

One MNB user remarked:

At some levels this appears to an idea that should be given serious consideration until the part that shoplifter pay an undisclosed sum" is there a provision for a WalMart debtors prison? Could this evolve into a profit center for WalMart ? Who runs the local program, what are their qualifications or will it be just another undertrained department manager?




MNB took note the other day of a Time reports that Amazon is testing a new concept in Japan, where it will allow people watching a new cooking show on its prime video streaming service "to order some of the food featured in the episodes" using Amazon's 1-click technology. It seemed to me that this is a very smart idea, and one MNB user agreed:

Amazon could take it to the next level by providing the food as a pre-packaged meal with instructions (a la Blue Apron), so the viewer could replicate it at home. Serving for four, with maybe 2 as an option. Seems like a no brainer to me.




We had a piece the other day about a new restaurant concept called Organic Coup. One MNB user wrote:

I had the opportunity to try the Organic Coup in Pleasanton this week. The menu is very limited. You can have a sandwich, wrap or chicken nuggets with your tater tots or popcorn with organic drink options. I chose the sandwich and I was impressed that the sandwich was very juicy and flavorful. The service was quick and friendly. If I had the chance, I would go again. I am not sure I would go very often if I was close to a location given the limited menu but it would make the lunch rotation.




And finally, regarding KFC's newest innovation - suntan lotion that is supposed to smell like crispy fried chicken, one MNB user wrote:

Maybe it’s just me, but I’m not sure I want to smell like fried chicken while bathing in the hot sun.  Brings to mind the Seinfeld episode with Kramer using butter.  I’m just saying . . .

It is not just you. And I'm very sure.
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