News

Target ups holiday hiring by 40%

BY Marianne Wilson

Target Corp. announced a major investment for the holiday shopping season.

The discounter said it plans to hire approximately 100,000 employees for the upcoming holiday season, which is up about 40%.

Additionally, Target will hire 4,500 workers at the company’s distribution and fulfillment centers to replenish products to stores and fulfill digital sales throughout the season.

Target’s 2017 holiday hiring marks a significant increase from last year, when the retailer hired 70,000 employees. The retailer said that, based on the success of last year’s seasonal hiring events, it will host similar programs at all of its 1,816 stores nationwide on Friday, Oct. 13 through Sunday, Oct. 15. The events will help fill the 100,000 holiday store positions.

"Target has made significant investments in our business throughout 2017, and our commitment to hire 100,000 team members for the holidays will make shopping at Target even easier and more fun during one of the busiest times of the year,” said Janna Potts, chief stores officer, Target. As always, we will provide our seasonal team members with meaningful opportunities to build and develop skills, and offer great benefits, including a variety of schedules and team member discounts."

Applicants for Target’s seasonal positions can apply in advance on the company's website. Store leaders will conduct pre-scheduled interviews with applicants. Similar to previous years, current Target store associates will have the opportunity to increase their hours during the holiday season.

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FINANCE

Nordstrom edging closer to going private

BY CSA STAFF

One of the nation's best-performing department stores retailers may soon be out of the public arena.

Nordstrom family members are close to selecting Leonard Green & Partners to help fund a buyout of their namesake department store, reported CNBC, which cited people familiar with the matter.

The private equity firm would provide the Nordstrom family group, which owns 31.2% of the retailer, with roughly $1 billion in equity to help fund the deal, the report said. The deal between Nordstrom and Leonard Green has not yet been finalized, however, and other parties could still make a move to disrupt the talks, CNBC said.

Click here to read the full report.

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ECOMMERCE

Amazon rings up $500,000 in grocery sales in one week following Whole Foods Market deal

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

It only took seven days for Amazon to begin reaping the benefits of its acquisition of Whole Foods Market.

On its first day as the official owner of the natural foods grocer, Amazon made more than 2,000 items from the Whole Foods 365 Everyday Value line available online in the United States. By the end of the first week, sales across Amazon’s Pantry, Fresh and Prime services rang up $500,00 in total sales — nothing was sold on Amazon.com, according to One Click Retail. The firm has been closely monitoring Amazon’s sales data since announcing in June its plan to acquire Whole Foods for $13.7 billion. Amazon officially took over on August 28.

“Having all items posted and available online as of day one is just incredible,” Spencer Millerberg, One Click Retail’s CEO told Chain Store Age.

“There has been a lot of press about how Amazon is lowering prices at Whole Foods, but the rate that this company listed all of these items online is just as impressive,” he said. “Typically, this type of execution can take between six and 12 months. They had it ready on day one.”

Eighty-nine percent (89%) of food categories and 11% of non-food categories comprised the first week’s sales. The top selling items across all three platforms were water, canned beans, coconut water and tomato paste.

Specifically, snacks and candy contributed to 21% of sales, followed by frozen fruits and vegetables (10%). Beverages and canned goods comprised 9%, respectively, followed by frozen meals (7%), and condiments and dressings (6%). Baking and spices, and dairy and eggs rang up 5% of sales, respectively, followed by nutrition and wellness, and health and personal care (4%, each), One Click reported.

“All other food” categories contributed to 17% of sales. This demand indicates that Amazon shoppers are hungry for new categories, including more fresh options.

“Amazon didn't anticipate the significant impact that Whole Foods could bring to its fresh offerings,” Millerberg explained.

“Whether it is access to produce, lunch meat or other fresh merchandise, it is obvious that Amazon shoppers are hungry for the fresh value that Whole Foods can bring to the table,” he added. “Amazon needs to stay astute with a limited assortment that will make a huge impact among the shopper. But now it has the opportunity to keep more fresh foods flowing through the pipeline.”

According to data from Foursquare Labs, Whole Foods hit another milestone during week one — customer traffic swelled by 25% immediately after the takeover, according to Bloomberg.

The unprecedented demand that Amazon experienced during its first week as the grocer’s official owner did have one downside. Inventory was limited, and 93% of the top 100 selling items were out-of-stock by the end of the week. This negatively impacted sales for week two, which took a 38% dive, the company reported.

Millerberg also questions how this demand will impact the future of Whole Foods’ value proposition. “Amazon’s consumers are attracted to ‘everyday basics,’ while Whole Foods caters to the ‘upper echelon’ of goods,” he said. “It will be interesting to see if this trend continues and if it weighs down the value proposition of Whole Foods.”

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P.Donahue says:
Sep-19-2017 10:30 pm

Amazon rings up $500,000 in grocery sales ......
It should be noted that an above average grocery store does approximately $500,000 per week. ONE STORE does that amount of volume per week. There are over 30,000 conventional grocery stores in the US. Is Amazon related to the Kardashians?

Jim Thompson says:
Sep-13-2017 07:21 pm

Alternate headline - Amazon struggles with grocery operations
As one might expect, the Amazon take-over was a mixed bag in the first two weeks. On the negative side, significant operational issues hurt sales "93% of the top 100 selling items were out-of-stock" "This negatively impacted sales for week two, which took a 38% dive" On the other hand, at least for week one, Whole Foods received a fantastic bump from the acquisition "Whole Foods hit another milestone during week one — customer traffic swelled by 25% immediately"

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