Oct
 16
 2018



Ulrike

Hello,

Happy Tuesday and welcome back to The Spin! Today we reveal why some mall owners are actually welcoming the Sears bankruptcy. There’s also news about a new retail project by Amazon and a new tech initiative by Alibaba as well as a glimpse at what drives Gucci's Alessandro Michele. Enjoy the read and feel free to share with colleagues and friends! Best, Ulrike



retail

Oh happy day! Operators of high-end US shopping malls are cheering the bankruptcy of Sears. As reported, the struggling retailer is going to close an additional 150 stores, many of which had their leases signed decades ago at about $5.25 per sq.ft. The landlords of those locations now hope to lure higher paying tenants and charge up to five times that number.


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Amazon's sharks. Amazon has launched a dedicated online store designed specifically for items from ABC’s “Shark Tank”. Featuring (press release) more than 70 products that successfully received funding during seasons 1 to 9, the new Amazon Launchpad Shark Tank Collection aims to help participating entrepreneurs to scale their businesses and highlight top products from the show.





tech

Cloud Atlas. New technologies including artificial intelligence, drones and robots are transforming retail. Merging autonomous manufacturing with autonomous warehouses and autonomous delivery might soon allow (paywall) retailers like Amazon and Walmart to store and deliver goods as easily as data.



School of Tech. Alibaba Chairman Jack Ma plans to open a tech training institute in Indonesia, one of the tech company’s key markets. The so-called Jack Ma Institute of Entrepreneurs is designed to remedy the country’s shortage in tech engineers to make Indonesian businesses more digital-savvy. Amazon and Google are also fighting for market share in the country.





people

Slimming C&A. As part of its restructuring (paywall; in German), C&A has trimmed its board. Bart Brenninkmeijer, COO for Western Europe and Online, is moving to C&A's holding Cofra. Frank Beeck, COO Eastern Europe; Andreas Seitz, Human Resources; and Manfred Mandel, Marketing, are leaving (paywall; in German) the company. The board now consists of CEO Alain Caparros, Chief Merchandise & Sourcing Officer Martijn van der Zee, and CFO and Operations Officer Tjeerd van der Zee.



From Amazon to Hugo Boss. To speed up its digital transformation, Hugo Boss has named (paywall; in German) Matthew Dean VP Digital, Worldwide. Most recently, Dean was Managing Director at German multi-channel electronics retailer Cyberport. Before that, the digital specialist had worked for Amazon for over eight years.





markets

White Gold. To revive its cotton industry, Egypt has developed a comprehensive three-year development plan aiming to invest in spinning, weaving, dyeing and processing. High quality cotton was once the country’s proudest export, but between 1975 and 2016, the value of Egypt’s cotton exports dropped from US$540 million to US$90.4 million. This year, improving crop qualities already raised exports almost 37 percent.





last

Messy and mesmerizing. Wearing frayed jeans and a bulky plaid shirt paired with crystal-studded white leather sandals, sweat socks and a silk scarf, Gucci’s famed Alessandro Michele reveals his thoughts on beauty, humanity and the value of separation. He also shares how, back in 2014, he convinced Gucci CEO Marco Bizzarri that he’s the right person for the job - and where he met his boyfriend.







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