retail news in context, analysis with attitude

•  From CNBC:

"Ocado, a British online supermarket, announced Monday that it has acquired two robotics companies in the U.S. as it seeks to make its warehouses more efficient.

"The company, which also raised its full-year profit forecast, said it has agreed to buy San Francisco-headquartered robotics firm Kindred Systems for $262 million in cash and Las Vegas firm Haddington Dynamics for $25 million in cash and shares."


•  The Wall Street Journal reports that "Uber Technologies Inc., Lyft Inc. and DoorDash Inc. won a pivotal vote in California that exempts them from reclassifying their drivers as employees … The companies, along with Postmates Inc. and Instacart Inc., collectively contributed around $200 million to support Proposition 22, a measure that allows them to bypass a state law intended to provide employee-like protections for their drivers.

"The campaign was the most expensive for any ballot measure in state history. With more than 60% of ballots counted, the vote was running 58% in favor of the measure and 42% against … The outcome allows the ride-hailing and delivery companies to avoid complying with a law that could have reshaped their business models and battered their business in the most populous U.S. state. It also sets the tone for gig-worker regulation in the rest of the country."