SnapUp launches iPhone shopping list app
San Francisco – SnapUp is launching a free iPhone app that lets users take a screenshot of the item they’re shopping for and then have the product tracked on any retailer’s mobile app or website and compiled in one place. With access to the iPhone’s camera roll, SnapUp recognizes and transforms the screenshots taken, then adds those items to the user’s SnapUp account.
From there, consumers can use SnapUp to keep track of their items as well as create and share lists. SnapUp has also built a smart technology that alerts consumers when prices drop on their items.
In addition, swipe motions let users organize their snaps into customized dynamic lists so they can categorize and manage items. Users can then click a “Buy” button when the see an item available at a desired price.
Hershey’s Chocolate World, New York-New York Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas
Hershey’s Chocolate World immerses shoppers in all-things Hershey. The two-level, 13.000-sq.-ft. store, which has a 74-ft. high Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Bar that visitors can walk through and entrances styled to resemble Hershey’s Kisses, is designed as the ultimate brand experience. Custom chocolate sculptures of the Statue of Liberty, made of almost 800 lbs. of pure Hershey’s Milk Chocolate, and the Empire State Building, made of 1,800 Hershey’s Milk Chocolate bars, make idea photo ops.
Although it features more than 800 candy and chocolate offerings, Hershey’s is more than just a candy store. Interactive technology allows shoppers to personalize products and customize wrappers with their own image and message — and they can star in their very own Reese’s television ad. Shoppers can also send their friends and family a Hershey’s Kiss e-card, view a timeline of Hershey’s history or discover their ideal Reese’s combination of chocolate and peanut butter.
Design: JGA, Southfield, Mich.
Activist investors sparks fireworks at PetSmart
The nation’s largest pet specialty retailer could be in for a long summer now that activist investor Jana Partners is pressing for a review of strategic alternatives after acquiring a 9.9% stake in the company.
Jana Partners, a 13-year-old firm that describes itself as a value-oriented adviser specializing in event driven investing, disclosed in filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on July 3 that it had acquired a significant ownership position in PetSmart and it was looking for changes to be made. Jana Partners indicated it had acquired had acquired 9,820,734 PetSmart shares, a figure that includes options to purchase 4,733,700 shares, which equates to roughly 9.9% of the 99,208,627 PetSmart shares outstanding as of May 16.
Jana Partners indicated in the filing that it believes PetSmart shares are undervalued and represent an attractive investment opportunity. The disclosure of the company’s stake on its own was enough to cause Petsmart shares to surge more than $7 from the July 2 closing price of $59.81.
The firm indicated it plans to have discussions with the PetSmart board and management to review strategic alternatives such as a sale of the company, improving operating performance, the company’s capital structure and how to return significant capital to shareholders. Jana Partners’ filing also indicates it wants to discuss improving PetSmart’s disclosure to shareholders and the composition of the company’s management and board of directors.
PetSmart responded in a statement saying it, “welcomes open communications with its shareholders and values constructive input toward the goal of enhancing shareholder value. Our Board and management team are committed to creating value for all PetSmart shareholders, and we will continue to take actions to accomplish this goal and position the company for growth and success.”
PetSmart is off to a difficult start this year. The company’s first quarter same store sales fell 0.6% while total sales at the company’s 1,340 stores increased 1.1% to roughly $1.7 billion. Earnings per share of $1.04 were up 6.1% compared to 98 cents a share the prior year. The tepid performance prompted the company to forecast that second quarter same store sales would be flat to down slight and full year comps were likely to be flat.