Specialty Retail
Top stories summarized by our editors
1/18/2019

Retraining, outside hires, buying talent through acquisitions and outsourcing are all possibilities that companies should consider for closing skills gaps, write Megan McConnell and Bill Schaninger of McKinsey. "Adjusting the skills of a workforce requires a blend of rigor and creativity; it also requires dedicated commitment and attention from senior management," they write.

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McKinsey
1/17/2019

The Boston-based startup Sense plans to use fresh funding to upgrade its machine-learning energy monitoring app for the Connect IoT platform that Landis+Gyr's power meters use. Users will be able to track home energy consumption in real time, as well as remotely learn which appliances need fixing or are active.

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VentureBeat
1/17/2019

The retail of the future will look different from today, combining physical and digital shopping in practical ways that make the most sense for consumers, Kroger CEO Rodney McMullen said during a keynote at Retail's Big Show. "It's going to continually change, which to me makes it super fun," he said.

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Rodney McMullen
1/17/2019

GameStop has completed its $700 million sale of 1,284 AT&T Wireless stores to Texas-based Prime Communications. The sale will allow the retailer to increase its focus on its core gaming and collectibles businesses, said Executive Chairman Dan DeMatteo.

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Prime Communications
1/17/2019

Wisconsin-based Shopko Stores has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection with plans to close 38 stores, after shuttering at least 45 locations over the past year. Wells Fargo leads a group of lenders that has committed up to $480 million in financing.

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USA Today
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ShopKo Stores, Wells Fargo
1/17/2019

The internet of things could make heavy use of 5G's ability to handle large amounts of data, although Paul Bevan of Bloor, a consulting and advisory firm, says many IoT devices can still function well without it. "It is in areas requiring low latency, such as autonomous vehicles or, further down the track, remote robotic surgery that 5G really comes into its own," Bevan adds.

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ZDNet
1/17/2019

Securing critical infrastructure should be a priority for owners and operators, and should start with the assumption that a cyberattack is coming and will cause significant damage, write James Kaplan, Chris Toomey and Adam Tyra of McKinsey. Companies should take an integrated approach to cyberdefense by hiring new talent, creating a cyber-response team and making cybersecurity a companywide priority, they write.

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McKinsey
1/17/2019

Apple spoke with at least three private Medicare plans about the option of subsidizing Apple watches for at-risk seniors to provide medical support and protection. The most recent version of the Apple Watch is ideal for such a program, as it offers an electrocardiogram and fall detection.

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CNBC
1/17/2019

Gaming can help people improve their cognitive and social skills, while also offering potential career options through esports, writes Henry Foley. Foley outlines several studies to prove this and writes, "Far from being a waste of time, video games offer significant social, cognitive, and economic benefits."

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VentureBeat
1/17/2019

Western Beef will expand its self-checkout kiosks to 20 more of its New York City stores after a successful two-store test. The Toshiba-produced kiosks have been a hit with shoppers, raising satisfaction and reducing wait times, the grocer says.

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Toshiba