All Retail stories

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
Sep 17, 2020 - Economy & Business

Retail sales return to trend after coronavirus plunge

Data: U.S. Census Bureau; Chart: Axios Visuals

One of the few economic readings sporting a V-shaped recovery is U.S. retail sales, which showed the highest monthly gains in history in May (18.3%) and June (8.4%), and grew in August by 0.6%.

On one hand: While the reading showed a significant slowdown, total retail sales in August were higher than they were before the coronavirus pandemic hit the U.S., even when excluding food services.

Ina Fried, author of Login
Sep 15, 2020 - Sports

Smart ring maker Oura partners with UFC

Image: Oura

Oura on Tuesday will announce a partnership with mixed martial arts league Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), the latest in its deals to get its smart rings onto the fingers of sports stars.

Why it matters: The deals provide the startup with both visibility and validation that its rings can offer meaningful data on sleep, health and other metrics.

Sep 15, 2020 - Sports

COVID-19 brings boom for bicycles

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

A cycling boom has materialized as a result of the pandemic, with people around the globe taking part in the two-wheel revolution at unprecedented levels.

Why it matters: This has not only been a boon to the biking industry, but it also has the chance to permanently alter cities as bike-friendly changes to urban infrastructure got fast-tracked when the pandemic refused to relent.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
Sep 10, 2020 - Economy & Business

Mall owners Simon and Brookfield to acquire JCPenney out of bankruptcy

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Simon Property Group (NYSE: SPG) and Brookfield Property Partners (Nasdaq: BPY) have tentatively agreed to acquire most of the retail operations of JCPenney, as part of a deal that will help the bankrupt retailer avoid liquidation.

Why it matters: The deal could save upwards of 70,000 jobs.

DoorDash learns how to play fetch with new PetSmart partnership

Similarly to food and groceries, pet food and other items are necessary and recurring purchases for pet owners. Photo: Lynne Gilbert/Getty Images

DoorDash is branching out from food and grocery delivery with a new partnership with PetSmart to provide same-day delivery in more than 1,400 stores.

Why it matters: DoorDash is reportedly gearing up to go public soon (it confidentially filed with regulators for an IPO in February). Expanding its business could broaden the company's appeal to investors.

The pandemic is reshaping the holiday shopping season

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The 2020 holiday buying season is expected to be like no other: An avalanche of ecommerce deliveries, merchants running promotions earlier than ever, and tight crowd controls on Black Friday.

Why it matters: Retailers desperately need the revenue from this critical time of year — and they fear that overwhelmed package-delivery services will leave their customers high and dry (and angry).

TikTok could be Walmart's ticket to young shoppers

Photo: Francis Dean/Corbis via Getty Images

Walmart's efforts to join Microsoft on a TikTok acquisition could serve young shoppers to the retail giant on a silver platter.

The big picture: The Trump administration has been forcing a sale of TikTok due to ongoing national security concerns over ByteDance, it's Chinese owner. The app is most popular with young people who could be the future of Walmart's customer base, AP notes.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
Aug 27, 2020 - Economy & Business

Scoop: Warby Parker now valued at $3 billion

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Warby Parker, a New York-based eyeglasses designer and retailer, raised $245 million in new funding at a $3 billion valuation, Axios has learned from a source familiar with the company's finances.

Between the lines: Warby had been widely viewed as a 2020 IPO candidate, but seems to have opted to remain private longer due to both the pandemic and some struggles for other direct-to-consumer personal product brands.

Ina Fried, author of Login
Aug 25, 2020 - Technology

What tech is (and isn't) selling during the coronavirus pandemic

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Sales of PCs, webcams and other tech products that help people work, learn and play at home are up, while products designed for the highly mobile are losing ground.

The big picture: The pandemic has shifted where Americans spend their time — and, consequently, where they are spending their tech dollars.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
Aug 22, 2020 - Economy & Business

A quantum leap for e-commerce

Data: U.S. Census Bureau; Chart: Axios Visuals

The pandemic and lockdown significantly accelerated the rise of online commerce, compressing years of projected growth into a few months.

The big picture: Stuck at home for weeks on end, we turned to the internet and delivery to meet our consumer needs. That's been a boon for many tech companies, but it's not yet clear whether consumers will return to the real world once the pandemic ends.