Chinese electronics brand Xiaomi opened its first Mi Store in Hanoi last week to crowds that began queuing up at 3 a.m. to shop for smartphones, wearables and other gadgets. The retailer has grown to seven stores in Vietnam since opening its first shop in the country more than a year ago.
UK businesses have stocked up on commemorative plates, flags and other items for locals and tourists ready to celebrate Saturday's royal wedding. Malls in Britain have set up screens and seating so shoppers can watch the event, and restaurants have created themed cocktails and menus.
Nordstrom booked a 38% jump in first-quarter profits, and the department store chain expects a stronger year as a result of growing digital retail and the opening of its men's store in New York City. The retailer also sees growth ahead for its off-price Nordstrom Rack concept, which has made improvements to US stores and expanded into Canada.
New York City's Canal Street, known best for vendors hawking knockoffs, is gaining a hip new reputation for high-end retail. Jewelry brand Foundrae recently opened a store selling $10,000 pendants, and upscale home-goods retailer R.W. Guild's store features custom-made and antique furnishings.
Startups including Indochino and Suitsupply created successful online models for affordable bespoke suits, and now they're growing into brick-and-mortar showrooms for men who need to see and feel the fabric before buying. Indochino will grow to 31 stores this summer, including a location at Minnesota's Mall of America.
Artisans from rural India who often don't have smartphones or regular internet access are finding a partner in Amazon, which is offering them workshops and a platform for selling online. Amazon's goal is to court consumers with crafts and artisan goods they won't find anywhere else.
Fast-fashion retailer Zara opened a London flagship this week that includes high-tech features such as mirrors that let customers virtually try on garments and robotic arms that hand online orders to click-and-collect customers. Also, associates carry iPads to help shoppers place online orders.
Germany-based Puma will open a three-story flagship on New York City's Fifth Avenue that will have the space to showcase a wide range of the sportswear brand's products. Rival brands including Adidas and Nike also have stores in the Fifth Avenue shopping district.
In a competitive market, Sephora has thrived with a customer-first approach and investment in innovative technology. At the NRFtech conference for retail CIOs in July, Sephora Chief Engineering Officer Raghu Sagi will discuss how the company approaches innovation in the digital age. Learn more.
Amazon is adding "SmileCodes" to some of its boxes to encourage customers to find ways to reuse them. By scanning the barcode with the Amazon app, customers will be able to access videos and instructions to create an arts and crafts project with the cardboard.
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