Aerie gets into activewear with new Offline brand | Walmart trims corporate jobs in omnichannel push | Judge tentatively OKs Neiman Marcus reorganization plan
July 31, 2020
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Top Story
American Eagle Outfitters-owned Aerie has created a new activewear line, Offline by Aerie, as demand grows for comfortable activewear during the pandemic. The line featuring more than 250 pieces will be available online and at Aerie stores, in sizes from XXS to XXL.
Full Story: Footwear News (7/27),  Women's Wear Daily (subscription required) (7/27) 
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Are you prepared for back-to-school 2020?
RetailMeNot discusses what back-to-school season will look like for retailers this year with guest speaker Brendan Witcher, VP, Principal Analyst at Forrester Research. Watch now to learn strategies on how to be a helpful resource for consumers during this uncertain time.
Industry Watch
Walmart trims corporate jobs in omnichannel push
(Andrew Caballero-reynolds/Getty Images)
Walmart will eliminate hundreds of corporate positions as it pushes ahead with plans to more closely align its online and brick-and-mortar businesses, according to reports. The cuts will affect employees working in planning, real estate and logistics and are part of a series of recent organizational changes the retailer has made to deal with the pandemic and boost its omnichannel capabilities.
Full Story: Forbes (7/30),  CNBC (7/30),  Bloomberg (tiered subscription model) (7/30) 
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Neiman Marcus won preliminary approval Thursday for its reorganization plan that puts the luxury retailer on the path to exit Chapter 11 bankruptcy before the end of the year. The company also announced it has reached a tentative settlement in a dispute with unsecured creditors over the assets of German luxury e-commerce retailer Mytheresa.
Full Story: The Dallas Morning News (tiered subscription model) (7/30),  Women's Wear Daily (subscription required) (7/30) 
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Poll: Amazon, Publix among top grocers during pandemic
(David Becker/Getty Images)
Amazon, Publix, Wegmans, Costco and Kroger have been ranked in the Top 10 among US companies for the reputations they built with their responses to the pandemic, a new Axios Harris Poll shows. The survey examined the performance of companies by looking at seven areas that included trust, culture and ethics, and Amazon took the highest spot among food retailers at No. 3, followed by Publix at No. 4, Wegmans in sixth place, Costco seventh and Kroger ninth.
Full Story: Progressive Grocer (7/30) 
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Next Level Application Testing
Now more than ever, retailers must ensure flawless experiences for their customers. Organizations must improve their customers' experience and drive better relationships with their audience across points of contact. Hear from testing experts how you can improve and accelerate your testing program using automation, crowdtesting and Artificial Intelligence in this webinar.
Retail Trends
Crocs proves its staying power in the pandemic
(Cate Gillon/Getty Images)
Crocs beat expectations in the second quarter, as the pandemic spurred demand for comfortable footwear and investments in digital retail paid off, the company reported. The brand's classic clog proved to be a popular style during the quarter, and digital channels generated 56% of total sales, up from 33% in the same period last year.
Full Story: Footwear News (7/30) 
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Beauty brands and retailers including Ulta Beauty have had to change many of their practices to adhere to safe distancing requirements. Ulta has focused more on digital sales and its GLAMlab tool lets beauty fans virtually try on more than 4,000 products, while sibling mulitchannel retailers QVC and HSN have boosted beauty sales with social media events.
Full Story: CNBC (7/30) 
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RangeMe was launched in Australia in 2014, then a year later in the US, to help retail buyers discover new products and ease the way for brands to get their products onto store shelves. Today, RangeMe works with more than 10,000 buyers from about 4,000 retailers including major players like Walmart, Target, HSN and QVC.
Full Story: Forbes (7/30) 
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Retail Technology
Marks & Spencer will roll out its Mobile Pay Go option at 210 more stores after introducing it in 100 locations, most of them in and around London. More than 10,000 shoppers have used the technology since March, and the wider rollout will offer the contactless shopping option in more UK cities.
Full Story: Charged (UK) (7/30) 
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NRF News
On Aug. 11, NRF and the New York Fashion Tech Lab will co-host Retail Tech Spotlight: Tech-Enabled Resiliency, a virtual event made possible by American Express. The interactive program will feature quick-fire demos from startups led by women that have built the technologies enabling resiliency for retail. The event will feature a lineup of startups representing the best innovations to help the retail industry not only weather this storm but come out stronger. Learn more.
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About 77% of consumers plan to purchase clothing or accessories for back to school this year. Source: Prosper Insights & Analytics.
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As retail stores reopen in phases, customers could arrive with a flood of returns. In order to minimize contact between employees and shoppers, limit cross-contamination and reduce process time, retailers like Paper Source are exploring operational changes such as sanitary retagging and PPE for employees. Retailers are also exploring ways to engage customers to convert a lost sale into a new one. Read more.
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Chain Restaurant News
McDonald's turns to Mayo Clinic for safety advice
(Daniel Pockett/Getty Images)
McDonald's will join with the Mayo Clinic to get best practices for safely opening up and operating restaurants during the pandemic. The chain also announced plans to set diversity goals for its employees, franchisees and suppliers and track progress to improve inclusiveness.
Full Story: CNBC (7/30) 
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To reach a port we must sail, sometimes with the wind, and sometimes against it. But we must not drift or lie at anchor.
Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.,
physician, poet
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