Streetwear label Pangaia is using ink made with toxic pollution particles on its clothes and accessories, an initial phase of a plan to encourage the fashion industry to take a more circular approach. "[W]e're trying to spread ... innovations in a way that helps everyone -- the people making them, us, and other brands trying to reach new innovations," says chief innovation officer Amanda Parkes.
Updating private-label offerings, upgrading store interiors and highlighting new national partnerships have helped Target prepare for in-store customers, who are starting to return to brick-and-mortar sites and often buying more than they came for, Target CEO Brian Cornell said at the JPMorgan Virtual Retail Round-Up. As the COVID-19 vaccine rollout continues, "those that have been shopping with us through order pickup or drive up or Shipt are now celebrating that occasion by physically coming back in our stores," Cornell said.
Second-quarter auto sales are likely to double from Q2 2020 and that's one factor contributing to a semiconductor shortage expected to last for another year, according to AutoNation CEO Mike Jackson. Jackson also attributes the crunch to the pandemic, which continues to afflict a "fragile and disrupted" supply chain with no resolution for microchips in sight for at least six months.
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Some newer brands find it easier to make changes related to sustainability and mesh with customer expectations, says Thomas Husson of Forrester. A holistic approach that includes sustainability as a primary key to business transformation and marketing materials with "a tone that authentically engages the brands' community" are both important, Husson says.
A coalition of more than 140 leaders from groups including the NAACP, People for the American Way and the Black to the Future Action Fund published an open letter in the Financial Times recently calling on major shareholders to facilitate change by demanding racial equity audits, board diversity, transparency and more "protective practices from businesses. "These major asset managers have the opportunity to set an industry standard for corporations to go beyond their statements," the letter reads.
The third episode of the Renewable Energy SmartPod from SmartBrief features (Kenneth) Labeja, co-founder and CFO of Triple Oak Power, and Dareem David, director of finance at Primergy Solar. They share their insider perspectives on what the renewable energy industry gets right, what it gets wrong and how it can get better.
Technology can enhance biomass plant operations by allowing managers to take a total view of their process and see how one problem connects to another, says Larry Berg of RJM International. Berg uses such tools as computational fluid dynamics and thermal imaging to assess issues and locate opportunities for improvement.