Weekly Consumer News Update // June 27, 2023

Here's our weekly roundup of recent consumer and retail news. This week, Sweetgreen plans for automated stores nationwide, Bloomingdales partners with Barbie as one of many collaborators ahead of the movie release, and more. 





  • Private equity-backed Savers Value Village targets $2.7 billion valuation in US IPO Reuters
  • Kering will buy high-end French fragrance brand Creed for an estimated $1.1B-$2.2B Reuters
  • Pinstripes is merging with Banyan Acquisition Corp at an EV of $520M Bloomberg
  • Neptune Retail to buy Coupons.com-parent for $430 million Reuters
  • Hollywood star Ryan Reynolds among new investors backing F1 team Alpine in $218 million deal AP News
  • Overstock.com wins $21.5M auction for Bed Bath & Beyond’s intellectual property, digital assets CNBC
  • Banijay Acquiring Balich Wonder Studio WWD
  • Transom Capital Completes Acquisition of HALO and aden + anais Brands PE Hub
  • Forman Mills finds a buyer and avoids bankruptcy Philadelphia Enquirer
  • Warner Bros. Discovery is reportedly looking to sell off half of its film and TV music catalog The Verge




Flavored e-cigarette sales are booming despite federal crackdown

Flavored e-cigarettes represented 41.3% of U.S. retail-store e-cigarette unit sales in December 2022, up from 29.2% in January 2020. CNBC


Adults are driving sales of the hottest toy on the market: Squishmallows

The fandom is often likened to the Beanie Baby craze — and on its way to be an enduring brand like Hello Kitty and Pokémon. WaPo


‘There’s Barbie fever and people are catching it’: How Barbie collaborations took over retail marketing

From fast fashion to food and beverage to department stores, it feels like almost every retailer is jumping on the pink bandwagon. According to official Mattel releases, over 100 brands are participating leading up to the movie’s July 21 release. Modern Retail 


Walgreens warns of low consumer spending, large drop in COVID sales

Walgreens Boots Alliance on Tuesday warned that lower spending by inflation-spooked consumers and a hit from a larger-than-expected drop in COVID product sales would likely persist into next year, sending its shares plunging nearly 9%. Yahoo


The restart of student loan payments is going to pressure the strong US consumer, as 34% of borrowers say they'll be unable to make payments

Thirty-seven percent of consumers with student loans said they will need to reduce spending elsewhere to be able to repay their debt beginning in October when the pause of payments ends, according to a survey of 2,000 people by Morgan Stanley. Business Insider





Bloomingdale’s and ‘Barbie the Movie’ Get Ready for Their Summer Fling

The multifaceted partnership includes online and in-store pop-up shops, an exclusive collaboration with private label Aqua, events and window displays. WWD


Target races to bring next-day delivery to customers farther from city centers

Target has a new way to speed packages to customers who live in the farther-out suburbs and neighborhoods of major cities, as it tries to give its e-commerce business a jolt. CNBC


Major retailers are losing confidence in San Francisco

A mix of retail theft and lower consumer sales has pushed major retailers to close their Bay Area shops. Westfield became the latest major company to pull out its operations in downtown San Francisco when it abandoned its shopping center last week. Modern Retail


The Problem With Fashion’s Sustainability Push: It Doesn’t Make Much Money

More than 100 apparel retailers introduced resale platforms within the past two years. But consumer acceptance has so far been minimal. Bloomberg


Container Store Goes After $10 Billion Dorm Market With Dormify Shops

The storage and organization retailer has teamed up with online seller Dormify to grab some of Bed Bath & Beyond's share of the back-to-school market. Forbes''


Tech giants Amazon and Meta hit pause on retail expansions plans

As their main revenue drivers remain unstable and economic conditions become more unpredictable, the rollout of physical stores has been put on the back burner. Modern Retail





Nike takes gaming to next level with metaverse space in Fortnite

The sportswear giant is launching a metaverse gaming experience called ‘Airphoria’ as part of its strategy to move beyond physical product and deepen its connection with consumers. Vogue Business


Roblox is adding content for its growing adult user base

The new category will cater to Roblox’s fastest-growing category of users: those between 17 and 24 years old. Fast Company


American Companies Held Hostage by the Whims of TikTok

The social-media giant has become ‘a billion-person focus group,’ disrupting business cycles and upending corporate R&D. WSJ


YouTube Is Testing an Online-Games Offering

The new service, called ‘Playables,’ is part of CEO’s push into new areas amid advertising slowdown. WSJ


TikTok Inks U.S. Warehouse Partnerships in Bid to Rival Amazon and Temu 

TikTok has signed logistics deals to ensure that the products people buy on its app arrive smoothly at their front doors—a key part of the video app’s efforts to transform itself into a shopping destination. The Information


Meta Debuts New Subscription Service for Its Virtual Reality Headsets

The plan, which costs $7.99 a month for access to two titles, comes as Meta deals with slowing VR sales. Bloomberg




Image shows a counter with four tablets for ordering. Behind the counter are the automated dispensers for Sweetgreen's Infinite Kitchen, holding an array of ingredients.

Inside Sweetgreen’s first automated location — and the salad chain’s plans to take the tech nationwide

After only a few weeks operating the restaurant, the salad chain is preparing to go all in on the technology to cut labor costs and improve the customer experience. CNBC


The Buffet Is Back, Stretching Dollars and Slinging Crab Legs

These big, communal all-you-can-eat spreads faltered amid pandemic fears, but inflation and a hunger for an experience are giving them new life and variety. NYT


Domino’s rolls out new service to deliver pizzas to places like beaches and parks

Domino’s on Tuesday announced its new Pinpoint Delivery service, which allows customers nationwide to order to locations without a standard address.  CNBC




  • Five Below poaches McDonald’s alum for CFO Retail Dive
  • Anne-Laure Couplet Is The Kooples’ New CEO WWD
  • Victoria’s Secret names brand president, chief merchandising officer Retail Dive
  • TikTok’s COO Pappas to Quit The Information
  • Ouai’s Colin Walsh Named CEO of P&G’s Specialty Beauty Division WWD
  • Gymshark chief commercial officer exits Retail Dive
  • Rihanna appoints new Savage X Fenty CEO Vogue Business
  • Harry Styles’ Pleasing Names Shaun Kearney First Chief Executive Officer WWD