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Amazon expands same-day delivery

BY Dan Berthiaume

Seattle – Amazon.com has expanded same-day delivery in Baltimore, Dallas, Indianapolis, New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C., metro areas, with more than a million eligible items now available for same-day delivery. These six cities join the existing same-day delivery-eligible cities of Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Francisco and Seattle.

Under the program, customers can order as late as noon, seven days a week and get things like movies, video games, last-minute travel needs, back-to-school supplies and family necessities delivered to their home the same day. Prime members pay $5.99 for all the same-day delivery items they can order.

Customers who search or browse the Amazon product selection will find the "Get It Today" filter on the left-hand navigation panel, just below the “Amazon Prime” filter. They can select “Get It Today” and see only those items eligible for Same-Day Delivery. A similar “Get It by Tomorrow” filter will allow customers to discover millions of additional items that can be delivered the next day.

Prime members pay $5.99 for all the same-day delivery items they can order. Pricing for non-Prime customers remains unchanged, with a $9.98 fee for the first item and $0.99 for each additional item.

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Banana Republic to partner with Instagram on paid advertising

BY Dan Berthiaume

San Francisco — Banana Republic in late August will extend its digital reach as part of a select group of brands partnering with Instagram on paid advertising — a first-time amplification for the brand on the platform.

The move comes as the retailer has stepped up its use of social media, using it to promote its new fashion direction. The retailer offered customers a first view of things to come in fall product through a series of brand posts on Banana Republic’s social media channels, as well as organic posts on Webb’s personal channels. And to reach new audiences, the brand teased the fall collection on Snapchat for the first time, giving fans a first look at fall behind-the-scenes with Webb.

"The New Look of Banana Republic reflects our charge towards authenticity in storytelling, where fashion is front and center," said Catherine Sadler, global chief marketing officer. "Fall is a continuation of the marketing platform we first introduced this spring, and now we’re excited to share the next chapter. This fall campaign reflects a strong stylish step forward in our evolution."

Fall signals a significant shift across the entire brand, from the product and styling of the collection, to the debut of the global marketing campaign, "The New Look of Banana Republic."

"It’s a new day at Banana Republic," said Jack Calhoun, global president, Banana Republic. "This fall collection and campaign bring us to a more modern, fresh place, that’s still deeply rooted in our heritage.”

The print campaign celebrates the brand’s heritage and commitment to authenticity by sharing product stories through the lens of real-life couples who embody the spirit of the modern day adventurer.

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Report: Delhaize considers Market Basket bid

BY Dan Berthiaume

Tewksbury, Mass. – Delhaize Group, parent company of Maine-based supermarket chain Hannaford Bros. Co., is reportedly making a bid for part or all of the embattled Market Basket grocery chain. Market Basket operates 71 stores in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine, and has been embroiled in a dispute with employees over management since July.

According to the Boston Globe, Delhaize could at most purchase the 50.5% of Market Basket owned by Arthur S. Demoulas, majority shareholder of Market Basket parent company Demoulas Super Markets, and his relatives. In June 2014, Demoulas removed his cousin, former CEO and current Demoulas Super Markets minority shareholder Arthur T. Demoulas, from his CEO post in a financial dispute, although Arthur T. has retained his shares.

Starting July 18, a large number of Market Basket employees have been staging demonstrations and refusing to show up for work, demanding the return of Arthur T. Demoulas as CEO. Arthur T. Demoulas has since offered to buy the company for an unspecified sum and also offered to run the company while negotiations for a purchase take place. With most warehouse workers and drivers refusing to report for duty, Market Basket stores have almost no products on the shelves.

To date, eight management-level employees have been fired. Senior management has threatened to fire any employees who did not go back to their scheduled shifts as of Aug. 4 and has held public job fairs, but there is no definite news of any more employee firings.

The company also is reportedly considering reducing the hours of or even laying off all part-time employees. Market Basket employs roughly 25,000 workers, of whom more than half are part-time. Management of Demoulas Super Markets released a statement about staffing.

“The CEOs have said repeatedly they would welcome back all associates in an effort to return to full operations for the benefit of Market Basket’s customers, associates, vendors and communities,” said the statement. “It is not their wish that anyone be laid off. Toward that end, they have directed store directors to receive deliveries and stock their shelves. Company practice has always been that store directors are responsible for determining appropriate staffing levels in their stores.”

A spokesperson for Hannaford Bros. denied that Delhaize is actively considering a bid.

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