Ripcord

Ripcord is a weekly newsletter from Loose Threads that highlights one timely and important insight about the new consumer economy. The newsletter arrives every Thursday morning and it also features updates on Loose Threads Membership and the Loose Threads Podcast.

PrimeTime: Prime members gain curbside Whole Foods pickup; Alexa-enabled shopping hasn’t caught on; Walmart facilitates easier ecommerce returns; Amazon looks to expand sports content, experiments with video ads on mobile


The latest news on everything Amazon   Prime members now have access to curbside pickup at Whole Foods. To utilize the service, Prime members can shop Whole Foods on the Prime Now app or site and retrieve their order as early as an hour later, or in 30 minutes for the price of $4.99. Not…

The Grinds: JCPenney banks on babies; Malls house digitally-native brands, coworking offices; Casper plans for 200 stores; VF ditches denim


JCPenney banks on babies, but seizing Toys R Us’ market share continues to ignore the company’s endemic problems. What happened JCPenney is opening 500 baby shops in its department stores, sweeping up market share from the liquidation of Toys R Us and its Babies R Us brand. This will move some…

Nike, Disney and the shift to a direct-to-consumer business


While the emergency of direct-to-consumer brands has been well—if not overly—chronicled, people have paid less attention to wholesale-driven businesses shifting to direct-to-consumer. These changes are occurring across many industries, but consumer products and entertainment offer some interesting…

PrimeTime: Amazon is uniting its advertising business on a single platform, extends back-to-school season; Kroger debuts a new grocery delivery service


The latest news on everything Amazon   Amazon is uniting its advertising business on a single platform, regardless of whether advertisers seek to sell their products directly to Amazon or directly to shoppers as third-party sellers. The consolidation is meant to give advertisers a more…

The Grinds: Walmart is incubating an Everlane-like private label, CVS embraces K-beauty, Equinox turns to employees for brand promotion, Van Leeuwen raises minority investment


Walmart is incubating an Everlane-like private-label brand—should Everlane worry? What happened Walmart’s new brand is allegedly inspired by Everlane—the minimalist “essentials” brand for women’s apparel and accessories—but will aim to reel in younger, Gen-Z customers while offering items at a…

Everyone is spending more on marketing than they admit


Some startups such as Casper, Harry’s and Hims have or are spending money on advertising like established holding companies such as Unilever, P&G, Nestle do. They plow a massive percent of operating expenses into marketing and sell equity to do so. But for most other consumer startups, it’s become…

The Grinds: IKEA downsizes and digitizes, The RealReal raises $115 million, Disney and 21st Century Fox strike merger, A Ma Maniére fuses streetwear with hospitality


IKEA downsizes and digitizes to retain its hold on young clientele. What happened Since 2015, IKEA has opened 24 small format stores—an average of 9,700 square feet, compared to its traditional 82,000 square foot warehouses. Customers aren’t able to bring many items home with them from the stores,…

The fallacy of ecommerce’s infinite shelf space


There is a common refrain that the beauty of ecommerce is the idea of infinite shelf space—that there can be an unlimited number of products for sale on the internet because there are no limits to the size of the shelf. This premise is one of the keys behind what makes Amazon “the everything store”…

PrimeTime: Prime Video will launch more personalized interface, Prime members are lapping up Whole Foods perks, Amazon’s Q2 2018 profit exceeds $2.5 billion, Amazon sellers are paying for fake positive reviews


The latest news on everything Amazon   Prime Video is launching a more personalized interface for Amazon streamers. While Netflix has built its brand on personalization down to the thumbnails for each show, Prime viewers neither have user profiles nor receive movie or TV recommendations…