All Retail stories

Here come the weddings

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The latest sign of a return to normal: The traditional in-person wedding is plotting a comeback.

Why it matters: The colossal wedding business — already facing upheaval as marriage rates plummet — was left for dead by the pandemic. The effect crushed revenues for the lengthy list of love beneficiaries: vendors, florists, hotels, caterers, jewelers, makeup artists and more.

Mar 19, 2021 - Podcasts

Bodegas threaten to boycott Coke

Coca-Cola is as much a part of New York City bodegas as are corn chips and cats. But a trade group representing Latino bodega owners is threatening to boycott Coke products over the company's decision to close a Latin affairs office and some funding decisions the group believes are inequitable.

Axios Re:Cap digs into the possible boycott and what's behind it with Frank Garcia, chair of the National Association of State Latino Chambers of Commerce and a onetime Coke ally, who worked to fight against former Mayor Bloomberg's soda tax.

Sony's PlayStation buys fighting-game tournament

A store's PlayStation display case. Photo: Budrul Chukrut/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Sony's PlayStation division has bought the Evolution Championship Series (Evo), the long-running fighting game tournament that hosts contests between the world’s best players of video games such as "Street Fighter," "Mortal Kombat," and "Tekken."

The big picture: Video game giants such as Sony and Microsoft usually buy companies that make games. But Sony's acquisition of Evo, made jointly with a new group called RTS, is the rare purchase of an event — and a notable move for Sony into competitive gaming.

Mar 16, 2021 - Podcasts

Amazon's union fight in Alabama

Amazon's fulfillment center in Bessemer, Alabama, has become ground zero for the U.S. labor movement, with nearly 6,000 employees asked to vote on unionization by March 29.

Axios Re:Cap digs into what the Alabama situation means for Amazon, its workers and why it's happening now, with Alec MacGillis, author of the new book about Amazon called "Fulfillment, Winning and Losing in One-Click America."

Mar 16, 2021 - Sports

Exclusive: Fanatics' memorabilia arm partners with 3 Hall of Famers

Joe Montana signing autographs. Courtesy: Fanatics

Joe Montana, Jerry Rice and Charles Woodson have joined the growing roster of athletes to exclusively partner with Fanatics Authentic, the online retail giant's collectibles and memorabilia arm.

The state of play: Known primarily for apparel, Fanatics also deals in memorabilia, which occupies an important corner of the exploding sports fandom investing complex.

Coca-Cola and Home Depot voice opposition to Georgia voting restrictions

Demonstrators protest in opposition of House Bill 531, which would curtail voting access, in Atlanta, Georgia. Photo: Megan Varner via Getty Images

Coca-Cola and Home Depot, two major corporations based in Georgia, expressed opposition to the state's push to restrict voting, the Washington Post reported Monday.

Why it matters: After the GOP lost in Georgia's Senate runoffs, Republican lawmakers moved quickly to introduce legislation that would make it harder to vote, baselessly citing voter fraud.

A year of the pandemic added another Christmas for e-commerce sales

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

A year of pandemic living drove U.S. consumers to spend an additional $183 billion online, according to a new study from Adobe released Monday. That's roughly the amount they spent during e-commerce's peak November-December holiday shopping season last year.

The big picture: Adobe is predicting 2021's total e-commerce sales to land between $850 billion and $930 billion, with the figure topping a trillion for the first time in 2022. That's compared to $813 billion in 2020, which was a big leap up from $573 billion in 2019, the last pre-pandemic calendar year.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
Mar 11, 2021 - Economy & Business

Private equity firm TH Lee doubles payout for laid-off Art Van workers

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Thomas H. Lee Partners has agreed to double the size of an assistance fund for former workers of Art Van, a Michigan-based furniture and mattress retailer it bought in 2017 but which went bankrupt less than three years later.

Why it matters: It shows how the Toys R Us settlement set something of a precedent. And if we get one more, it will be an official trend.

Mar 10, 2021 - Axios Twin Cities

Mall of America's owner faces more pandemic-driven financial struggles

Photo: Emilie Richardson/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A Mall of America official disclosed last week that lenders are likely going to take a 49% equity stake in the Bloomington megamall after the pandemic hampered its operations elsewhere.

Why it matters: Valued at $1.9 billion, MOA is perhaps the largest real estate asset and tourism driver in the state — and lenders are likely have a very large voice in what happens to its future.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
Mar 5, 2021 - Economy & Business

Retail's back to the future

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

When it comes to retail and private equity, what's old is new again.

Driving the news: Insight Partners this morning announced that it will invest $500 million in the e-commerce business of Saks Fifth Avenue, which will become a standalone company valued at $2 billion. Saks owner Hudson's Bay will retain a majority stake, while Saks president and CEO Marc Metrick will move over to run the new company.