December 2023: Monthly Consumer News Roundup

Welcome to Traub's roundup of recent consumer and retail news.


Each month, we'll be sharing a compilation of the biggest news stories from all corners of the consumer landscape, from CPG, retail, beauty, tech, hospitality, real estate, investing and more.

Here's our roundup of recent news articles: 

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Ozempic and a Protein Shake: Food Makers Prep Weight-Loss-Drug Side Dishes

Startups and other food makers are pitching their products as natural alternatives or companion products for patients. WSJ


TikTok becomes first non-game app to reach $10B in consumer spending

The app, which reached 1 billion monthly active users in 2021, has now become the first non-game mobile app to generate $10 billion in consumer spending across the Apple App Store and Google Play combined. TechCrunch


Macy's continues to gain altitude as buyout rumors underpin stock

Sycamore is reportedly the latest suitor for the department store and has raised debt to make a possible all-cash offer. Other potential buyers include Arkhouse Management and Brigade Capital Management who have offered $21 per share. Seeking Alpha


PepsiCo’s small snacking brands fill a big void for CPG giant

With brands such as SunChips and PopCorners, the food maker can attract and retain consumers while growing its business faster. Food Dive


Chobani buys coffee roaster La Colombe for $900M

The purchase gives the yogurt giant a presence in the fast-growing RTD category while building on its goal of becoming a more diversified food and beverage company. Food Dive


Farfetch, Now Matches: Investors Look for Deals Amid Luxury eCommerce Sites 

Frasers Group, the British retail conglomerate, has acquired the luxury multibrand retailer Matches for £52 million from PE firm Apax Partners. This transaction unfolds amid the dramatic twists and turns of the online luxury retail arena. Just this week, Farfetch narrowly avoided bankruptcy with a rescue by South Korean retail giant Coupang. PYMNTS


Prices fell last month for the first time since April 2020

US inflation slowed further in November, and consumer spending continued to outpace expectations. CNN


Google debuts powerful Gemini generative AI model 

Unlike other AI models, Gemini was trained to recognize, understand, and combine different types of information including text, images, audio, video, and code. YouTube


Shiseido to Acquire Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare
The beauty conglomerate increases its investment in U.S.-based brands as it pursues a geographically diverse portfolio. BoF


Nike will lay off workers as part of $2-billion cost-cutting plan

Nike plans cost-cutting measures to save up to $2 billion over the next three years, including layoffs and more automation. NPR


Consumers are feeling better about the economy. Is the ‘vibecession’ really coming to an end?

Consumer confidence snapped back in December, but it’s too soon to say whether the optimism will last. MarketWatch


Your Kid Prefers YouTube to Netflix. That's a Problem for Streamers.
Major streaming services test releasing children's content on YouTube and cut back on fare for kids. WSJ


Unilever to acquire premium haircare brand K18

The investment demonstrates Unilever’s interest in biotechnology and an expansion into the prestige hair-care space. But, more importantly, it signals its consumer’s growing interest in bond repair technology. Glossy


Shoppers Kept Spending This Holiday Season
Consumer spending rose 3.1% in holiday season, amid inflation and strong job market. WSJ


Red Sea shipping workarounds add costs, delays for suppliers, retailers

Retailers around the world are racing to to reroute cargo away from the Suez Canal as businesses grapple with the biggest shipping upheaval since the COVID-19 pandemic threw global supply chains into disarray. Reuters


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