Apr
 12
 2018



Ulrike

Hello,

Happy Thursday and welcome back to The Spin! In the continuing string of retail failures, another US merchant is headed for liquidation. Over in China, Jack Ma has an ace up his sleeve if a trade war with the US ensues. On a lighter note, there is the new teeny-tiny Hollister "mini-me" collection. Enjoy the read - and your day, Ulrike



retail

Another one bites the dust. A US bankruptcy judge just denied The Bon-Ton Stores' request to pay its potential buyers a $500,000 work fee, most likely sending the Pennsylvania-based retailer for liquidation. As reported, a group of investors including US mall owners had sent (press release) a letter of intent to acquire The Bon-Ton Stores as a going concern, offering $128 million in cash and the assumption of some debt. A group of lenders, who hold about $250 million in Bon-Ton bonds, objected to the payment of the fee.


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markets

Breaking the vow. Using US tech giant Apple as an example, Jack Ma visualizes the benefits of a symbiotic trade relationship between China and the US. According to the Alibaba CEO, Chinese companies collect revenue from selling components and assembling final products, while Americans make most of the profit. Apple's $48 billion earnings in fiscal 2017, for example, did not make it into the calculation. If the trade relationship between China and the US continues to deteriorate, Ma considers abandoning his vow to create one million US jobs.



More, more, more. Yesterday, shares of French luxury group LVMH soared to a record high on strong Q1 results, led by a 16 percent increase in the company's fashion segment. The high sell-through in luxury products had prompted brands like Chanel, Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Hermès to increase prices in Q4 2017 and Q1 2018 - a move that seems to pay off quickly.





brands

From Swoosh to Stripes. After 20 years of wearing Nike, the Washington Huskies college football team has signed a ten-year $119 million deal with Adidas, whose North American headquarters in Portland/Oregon are located about 370 miles from Washington State University. In the US, Adidas now has twelve schools and two Pac-12 Conference athletic programs under its umbrella.



Scandalous times. Meanwhile, the college basketball bribery and corruption scandal continues, as Adidas executive James Gatto, who is still on administrative leave, and additional defendants are now formally accused of conspiracy to provide cash to the families of former basketball players at Kansas and NC State universities. The trial is scheduled for October.





tech

Dressing "mini-me". Fashion retailer Hollister has teamed up with Snapchat and Bitmoji to dress the personal cartoon-avatars of Bitmoji users in digital fashion inspired by the current Hollister collection. Hollister's Bitmoji line comprises twelve outfits including hoodies, T-shirts, pants and shoes. To dress their "mini-me's", users have to use the latest Bitmoji version and tap on a shirt icon that will provide available outfit options.



Gone for good. Although tens thousands of fans are protesting its closure, Ssense is not going to bring back the social commerce platform Polyvore. The Montreal-based fashion platform acquired Polyvore from Oath (Yahoo, Huffington Post, Tumblr) last week, and immediately shut it down. Former Polyvore users have until May 15 to block the transfer of their personal data. A petition to bring Polyvore back gathered more than 13,300 signatures, far exceeding the original target of 5,000, but Ssense won't budge.





last

Sunny side up. Entering a new dimension of innovative collaborations, New York-based Dimes restaurant turned lifestyle brand has partnered with London-based jewelry company Loquet. Loquet makes gold lockets with a crystal container that puts little charms on view. For the Loquet x Dimes capsule, Loquet has created food-inspired charms like berries, fruit slices and an egg.







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