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    The Week In News, But Shorter

    February 17 - 25, 2024

    The Week In News, But Shorter
    February 17 – 25, 2024

    We were very interested in reading the recent news that Walmart is set to buy smart TV maker Vizio.  For the retailer, it makes sense as they instantly have access to expand their own growing ad network, while also leveraging the breadth of customer data collected by Vizio’s smart TV platform. But this is a newsletter mainly focussed on property owners. You might ask why would this news interest me? As a property owner, as well as a retailer, Walmart has proven time and again that success lies in developing alternative forms of revenue. Whether it’s a developer repurposing a former Macy’s to a open charter school or this Walmart example, it’s clear that the property owners who are embracing technology to create new revenue streams outside of the traditional lease are the ones finding the most success these days. 

    In other news this week, we saw a major player in the CRE world use a technology partnership to close the AI technology gap, a tried-and-true mall retailer begin to shut down stores, while yet another digitally native retailer finds value in their physical location to support their growth. You can find us over on LinkedIn where you can find some of this content before it hits your inbox.


    Digital Meets Physical

    Can Cushman & Wakefield’s AI Push Close the Gap with CBRE and JLL? [Propmodo.comCushman & Wakefield hasn’t been the leader in commercial real estate when it comes to deploying cutting-edge new tech like AI. CBRE has already deployed its AI building. Cushman & Wakefield, by contrast, have not been as aggressive as these two firms when it comes to AI. But its new partnership with Microsoft for AI solutions could close the gap.

    Walmart to buy Vizio for $2.3B as annual revenue climbs 6% [The Verge]  Walmart said Tuesday it plans to buy smart TV maker Vizio for $2.3 billion. The retailer wants access to Vizio’s SmartCast operating system, which will enable Walmart to accelerate Walmart Connect, its retail media network.

    Shein to debut spring-summer collection in shoppable livestream [Retail Innovation HubShein is continuing its livestream shopping strategy with the reveal of its newest collection. With its upcoming livestream, shoppers can view the three-hour showcase on YouTube, X, Instagram and Facebook, and the shoppable experience will be available on the retailer’s mobile app. 

    RFID has been around for decades. Now it’s becoming retailers’ best crime-fighting tool. [RetailDive]  An increasing number of retailers are dusting off a decades-old technology in order to streamline their inventory management, and some experts believe it could go far in tightening up the industry’s loose accounting of shrink and theft.

    Micro & Last Mile Fulfillment

    Walmart lowers prices while discussing drone delivery [Supermarket PerimeterWalmart reduced food prices on products in the last quarter, and its private brands are continuing to grow in many of the retailer’s markets. They also completed 20,000 drone deliveries from 37 hubs during the last two years, and the service will be available to about 75% of consumers in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

    Walmart Eases Supplier Delivery Demands as Stocking Pressures Recede [WSJWalmart has loosened delivery benchmarks set during the pandemic. The retailer is now requiring vendors to deliver shipments on time 90% of the time and in full 95% of the time, down from 98% for both now that store managers and associates have back rooms that are quite under control.

    Mall Talk

    Popular mall retailer closing dozens of stores amid restructuring [TheStreetIt may be something of a golden era for retailers who operate largely separately from malls and large indoor shopping complexes, but for those who do depend on malls, it is quite a different story. Retailers like The Body Shop, for example, which were heavily dependent on malls and high-foot traffic areas for tourism and interest, are feeling the pinch.

    How Demographics Differ Among Indoor Malls, Open-Air Centers and Outlets [GlobeStThe demographics and psychographics for indoor malls, open-air shopping centers, and outlet malls have both similarities and differences, but open-air shopping centers clearly attracted the highest income visitors at $87.8K.

    Boll & Branch CEO: “Shoppable showrooms” fuel growth [ForbesBoll & Branch will open six luxury-bedding stores this year as it continues to expand beyond its ecommerce origins. The brand has focused on building loyalty by focusing on customers’ needs, creating immersive retail experiences and using retail locations as “shoppable showrooms” where customers can physically interact with the products.

    When Science Class Is in a Former Macy’s [NY TimesDevelopers across the country are putting new schools in struggling malls, a growing trend that serves several purposes: increasing educational opportunity, revitalizing communities and reimagining the thousands of vacant retail spaces that make once-vibrant shopping centers a blight.

    Restaurants & Ghost Kitchens

    Culinary Hubs Put a Twist on Home Cooking [NY TimesThis adaptive reuse is part of a growing national trend: From Los Angeles to Nashville, developers are transforming clusters of old homes into walkable culinary hubs for the surrounding high-density neighborhoods.

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