Welcome to this Friday edition of The Spin. Today we're seeing how Puma is the subject of two separate news stories, how some Walmart employees were served a bitter pill immediately following a sweet one and checking out the latest fashion-meets-politics turn of events in India and the Middle East. Enjoy the read, please share it and have a marvelous weekend. (Note: We will not publish on Monday due to the Martin Luther King Day holiday in the US but will be back again on Tuesday.) Best, Christopher


Unleashing Puma... In news that many saw coming, luxury conglomerate Kering will spin off Puma by distributing 70 percent (paywall) of the 86 percent of Puma shares it now owns to Kering investors. It will keep the remaining 16 percent of shares and be a "long-term strategic shareholder" in the German athletic brand, which Kering became a majority stakeholder of in 2007. The move will allow Kering to focus on its stable of luxury names such as Gucci and Alexander McQueen. Kering also said it plans to unload its other sports-based brand, Volcom, soon.


...and its catfight with Plein. Puma is also making news for obtaining a temporary and immediate national injunction from a regional German court that prevents fellow German label Philipp Plein from selling Plein Sport items that feature a leaping tiger graphic that is similar looking to Puma's cat logo. Puma is also pursuing the case in the Netherlands. Plein, meanwhile, roared back on Instagram with a new marketing campaign that says "Don't Be a Puma, Be a Tiger" and offered a 50 percent discount to customers who send in Puma shoes.

Brooks Brothers' bicentennial. American brand Brooks Brothers kicked off its 200th birthday celebration this year with an extravagant catwalk show and party in Florence during Pitti Uomo on Wednesday night. The anniversary collection featured 45 looks of mostly classic menswear. This initial celebration was held in Italy instead of the brand's hometown of New York as current owner (paywall) Claudio del Vecchio is Italian.


Giveth and taketh away. Hours after announcing that it would raise its starting wage to $11 an hour in the US and start offering more employee benefits and bonuses, Walmart delivered the bad news: It will shutter 63 of its Sam's Clubs membership warehouses nationwide in the coming weeks. Many of the branch's 11,000 employees were not notified in advance. Ten of the 63 stores will become e-commerce distribution centers.

Myer makeover. After experience a sharp plunge in sales during the holidays, Australian department store Myer is looking to bounce back in the new year with a fresh assortment of eight new international labels, some of which are making their Australian debut. The high-end roster includes such names Marni, Lanvin, DVF and Victoria, Victoria Beckham.


Passage to India. On Wednesday the Indian government made it easier for single-brand foreign companies to open stores there by announcing it was rescinding the requirement for governmental permission if a foreign company owned more than 49 percent of retail operation. As the government continues to relax regulations, foreign investment in India has soared to a record annual high of $60 billion. This latest measure will reduce the need for local distributors and franchises and open the door for retail expansion by the likes of Gap and Apple.

Reading Revolve. E-tailer Revolve has come under fire on social media for its lack of diversity after it posted photos of its crew of influencers on a recent trip to Thailand. Using the hashtag #RevolveSoWhite, customers have called out the company for its lack of dark-skinned or plus-size women in its images. The viral campaign has also inspired plus-size blogger Valerie Eguavoe to start an Instagram page called @YouBelongNow that is devoted to influencers who may be ignored due to their skin color, religion, size or other factors.

Elie and the enemy. Lebanese designer Elie Saab offended many in his country by posting an Instagram photo earlier this week of Israeli "Wonder Woman" actress Gal Gadot in one of his dresses at the National Board of Review Awards. Gadot is a veteran of the Israeli army and Israel and Lebanon have formally been at war since 1948. After receiving backlash, the post was later removed.


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