The Barbell Effect

Earlier this year, he made some predictions in Innovate or Die: 5 Omni-channel Strategies Amazon is Trying to Outrun.  As a part of those predictions, he talked a little bit about the “barbell effect” and how there would be a dichotomy between luxury/high-end, customized, boutique firms that offered a unique customer experience for a premium and hyper-local/convenience based omni-channel models competing on price.

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Retailer Adoption and Investment in Ai, AR and VR

Our math is not adding up. Granted these messaging programs are driving sales and proven to increase ecommerce conversion rates but we are convinced there is a missing piece.  So, a question to everyone in the retail business. Is this the end of selling product? More money is being budgeted toward advertising than sales enablement and customer retention combined.

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LUXLOCK IOP Featured on Fung Global Retail Tech #LFFTF2017

THE STORE OF TOMORROW

One discussion we attended focused on the future of the physical store. The panel participants were Régis Pennel, CEO at French fashion retailer L’Exception; Elise Masurel, Head of Marketing at commercial real estate group Klépierre; and Julien Hervé, Innovation Director at apparel and footwear retailer Gémo. The discussion was moderated by Bertrand Lenotre, who cofounded the Digital Business News website. Below are our top takeaways from the discussion.

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“UTTERLY SHOCKING”: SILICON VALLEY SLAMS WHITE HOUSE FOR IGNORING A.I. THREAT

While Mnuchin remains optimistic about the idea that robots apparently aren’t replacing humans in jobs anytime soon, Silicon Valley is trying to come up with solutions for when the inevitable does happen. Tech experts like Bill Gates and Y Combinator president Sam Altman are pushing for solutions to offset the impact of the job displacement they fear is inevitable when robots take more jobs currently performed by humans.

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Chatbots Won't Solve Everything

“Conversational commerce” is the idea that mobile chat interfaces, such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and WeChat, could unlock a new frontier in shopping. Chat bots — text-based automated software applications — are at the centre of the discussion, promising to help companies efficiently interact with the millions of active users on messaging platforms, without requiring vast human resources.

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This startup is Zen about the competition

In gunning for Zendesk in its moment of glory, Salesforce deployed a curious weapon, calling the customer-service software company a “point solution.” These are fighting words in the world of application software companies. Point solutions are one-offs, the software equivalent of a boutique store. “Why shop at that quirky place when my department offers everything you could possibly want?” the incumbent seems to ask.

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Phyllis Posnick: Mistress of the 'Stopper'

"Her lips were wax, the kind that kids play with ... I had them sitting in my drawer for a couple of years just waiting for the right moment."

That brings us round to exactly what it is that Posnick does in her collaborations. “Photographers come to any magazine with a preconceived idea of what they can do,” she says. “They know Anna likes this, but she doesn’t like that. It’s all in their heads, and it’s in my head too. So what I try to do is remove all the inhibitions, mine and theirs, and see what happens. I try to give them the freedom to do something they wouldn’t normally do, because they’re not doing a fashion picture. The opposite, in fact. Almost every picture in the book except for the portraits was to illustrate an article, so we were solving a problem.”

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Ecommerce sales are on an upward trajectory

Department stores were one of the leading categories for which US smartphone users relied on their devices to research products, according to a November 2015 Accenture survey. Nearly half (47%) of these multichannel shoppers used phones in this manner. Nearly as many named apparel—a department store mainstay—as a category for which they used their smartphone more frequently.

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Study Shows That 75% of Global Internet Access Will Be From Mobile This Year

In Zenith's new Mobile Advertising Forecast report, the media-buying agency expects 85 percent of Spain's total internet usage to come from smartphones this year. Hong Kong was No. 2 on the list at 79 percent, while 76 percent of China's internet access is from mobile. The U.S. follows with 74 percent, and Italy and India each have 73 percent mobile usage.

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Luxury online retail market to reach $41.8B by 2019: report

Currently, ecommerce accounts for a small percentage of luxury sales, but that amount is growing. Only the United States and China will account for more sales in the luxury industry than collective ecommerce by 2025, according to a McKinsey analyst at the Financial Times’ Business of Luxury Summit in 2015. Back in 2009, McKinsey had capped its ecommerce prediction at 2 percent of sales, or $4 billion, for 2015. The actual figure is around 6 percent, or $14 billion, and the research firm has accordingly reassessed its view of digital channels, anticipating robust growth for the next decade and beyond (see story).

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Millennials Aren't Cheap, They're Thrifty

This generation, now the largest in the country, has an annual spending power of $600 billion and each member spends an estimated $85 per day. But faced with unrelenting student debt and an uncertain job market, they do not spend lightly. The e-commerce platform Hollar surveyed more than 1,000 Americans in an effort to determine just how tight-fisted millennials are.

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Macy's Investor Starboard is 'Impatient for Change

“We are not big fans of wait and see,” Smith said. “There is value there. How and when it gets unlocked is still open.”

Starboard disclosed its activist stake in the department-store chain in July 2015, saying the stock would be worth $125 if it better capitalised on its real estate by separating properties from operations. Macy’s shares have tumbled 47 percent since that conference presentation, trading at about $35.

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