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  • productivity stairway to heaven 2017Death of Indie
    dealers greatly 

    exaggerated?

    Market trends turn against
    impersonal, cold bigboxes


    Does size matter? The office market over the past 35yrs has been dominated by bigboxes & Amazon's lead in business supplies, points to a continuation. But emerging trends show the big guys are declining fast & Amazon peaking. The rise of progressive resellers providing 'personalised productivity services' embracing mobile technology, can & will succeed.. Tomorrow

    Read More
  • Screen Shot 2019 04 20 at 11.25.07 AM'Industry Week'
    plan quashed 

    Plan B? Go for IDC
    'Biz Productivity' show


    The Business Supplies Association (BSA) plan to rationalise vendors' heavy schedule of 20+pa shows & create an 'Industry Week' has been quashed. Understandably, leading wholesalers & resellers wouldn't cooperate. Great idea, so what's Plan B?  We feel consideration be given to a more customer centric 'Business Productivity Show'  for the IDC. We spoke w/BSA pres Barry Lane... Monday

    Read More
  • Screen Shot 2018 12 14 at 3.24.27 PM'Fakebook' fraud?
    FTC focus...Zuck

    CEO wilfully broke privacy
    Firewall, faces $23Bn+ fine


    FTC regulators investigating Facebook for mishandling/selling users’ personal information have set their sights on CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, exploring his past statements on privacy; seeking new, heightened oversight of his leadership & record busting penalties 

    Read More
  • Screen Shot 2019 04 19 at 2.25.47 PMDo Workplace
    W e l l n e s s
    programs work?

    Changing behavior; gains
    in motivation prove tough


    Company workplace wellness programs — efforts to get workers to lose weight, eat better, stress less and sleep more — are an $8 billion industry in the U.S. Recent research reports heathier behaviour, but not necessarily healthier results? We discuss findings...

    Read More
  • Screen Shot 2019 03 01 at 11.44.11 AMA c m e  United
    loses sharpness

    Shifts focus to safety
    tools & First-aid kits


    Acme United
    today announced slower sales growth in Q1'19 financial results. Sales of core cutting tools slowed whilst moving successfully into safety products....

    Read More
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smith gerry odp speed 18Depot & Alibaba
ink strategic deal

Collaboration to empower
SMB's global expansion??
How long before fire sale?


Office Depot & Alibaba,
one of the world’s largest B2B trading platforms today announced a strategic collaboration. Is the goal to empower US SMB's to grow in the global B2B e-commerce market or more likely a forerunner to a fire sale?

Read more ...

Screen Shot 2018 09 16 at 8.51.40 PMPaperchase under
closure pressure

CVA restructuring plan with
creditors meeting 22 March


As PP reported in Sep'18, pressure intensified on struggling stationery & greeting card retailer Paperchase to restructure, reduce costs like many redundant retail High Street models

Read more ...

Screen Shot 2019 03 01 at 11.16.31 AMH u m a n i s e.

E m p a t h i s e.

Differentiate!

Essendant's #CORELive19
advice in declining market


Day 2 of
Essendant's CORELive'19 conference in Denver reinforced the key takeaways from Day 1: The OP market is in serious decline; embrace broader business supply categories; develop consultative sellers & personalise your services with decision makers. Complete

Read more ...

Screen Shot 2019 02 26 at 11.49.09 AMCORE vows more
for ESND dealers

Dochelli & Douglas excited
re #STRESS partnership


Essendant's #CORELive'19
conference opened last Tuesday with president Harry Dochelli outlining the vision & strategy of the new #STRESS combo. Staples CEO Sandy Douglas joined Harry on stage for a Town Hall discussion... Complete

Read more ...

Screen Shot 2015 04 01 at 14.09.15AMZN Alexa cuts
the Dash button

The shift to voice activated
ordering supercedes touch 


Amazon's physical Dash buttons are no more. The etail giant has stopped selling its quirky, tap-to-order Dash buttons as of February 28th.

Read more ...

dell michael handsDell delivers
strong growth

Servers, networks, storage
VMWare up double digits


Dell Technologies
celebrated its return to the stock market with powerful growth in core categories in Q4'18 plus a return to profitability after a disruptive year of distractions. 

Read more ...

joshi vyomesh 3ds3D S y s t e m s 
sparks recovery

Sales growth boosted
by strong printer sales


3D Systems
announced increased sales but continuing losses for Q4'18. Ex-HP VJ Joshi is starting to recover the former 3D printing leader's early momentum 

Read more ...

park james fitbit timeupFitbit: is time
up for tracker?

Unhealthy trends: loses
market share v Apple


Fitbit,
the health & fitness tracking marketer, is on a downward slide with poor prospects in its battle with Apple Watch

Read more ...

Screen Shot 2018 11 09 at 10.01.51 AMKeurig coffee flat
needs extra shot

Group adds big brands to
offer eg. evian, Core, Peets


Keurig Dr. Pepper,
the newly formed $10Bn beverage giant confirmed the addition of more iconic brands to its portfolio in Q4'18 results. Meanwhile, its core coffee results were flat, in need of an extra espresso shot....

Read more ...

Veritiv truck sunsetVeritiv veers
towards sunset

Packaging/FS up & price
rises offset slow demand


Veritiv, the paper & packaging wholesale $9Bn merger of UniSource and xpedx (ex IP), continued to grow volumes in packaging, but declining printer paper demand was offset by price rises

Read more ...

Screen Shot 2019 03 01 at 11.44.11 AMAcme’s cutting
edge less sharp

Shifts focus to safety
tools & First-aid kits


Acme United today announced slower sales growth in Q4'18 financial results. Sales of core cutting tools slowed whilst moving successfully into safety products....

Read more ...

weisler dion HP enoughHigh Powered
recovery slows

Printer supplies demand
dives offset by price hikes


Old tech giant, HP Inc's,
 growth slowed dramatically in Q1'19.. CEO Dion Weisler maintained his "innovation" hype in spite of its weakest quarter in the last 2 years....Shares dived 16% 

Read more ...

joly hubert bby samsungB e s t  B u y 's
growth slowdown

CEO in denial about online
market share v Amazon


Best Buy, the $43Bn US electronics retailer continued its steady growth recovery. "Proud" CEO Hubert Joly's Q4'19 report maintained his hype slow online sales growth rate on a low base and projected a flat outlook

Read more ...

dead fish in the water300Desperate Depot's
delusional deceit

Is CEO Smith's intent saving
sinking ship or hyping tech
services to max exit value?


Office Depot/Max,
the bigbox car crash combo, continued its terminal tailspin in Q4'18. Core sales are plunging, disguised by acquisitions. We analyse CEO Gerry 'Smudger' Smith's hollow 'progress' rhetoric.... 

Read more ...

Screen Shot 2019 02 26 at 8.41.12 AMHome Depot's
growth slowdown

Supply Works to go PRO
to boost business supply


Home Depot
 the $108Bn+ home & business improvement supplier reported slower growth in direct sales. In contrast its $3Bn PRO (ex Supply Works) wholesale division is gaining strength with business service providers....

Read more ...

Screen Shot 2019 02 26 at 11.18.24 AMSmucker serves
up cold coffee

Acquisitions & divestitures
distract from weak core


J. M. Smucker, the US beverage & food services brands supplier, announced slower Q3'19 results ended 31 Dec'18 with acquisitions the main growth driver

Read more ...

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not yesterday's news tomorrow."

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Latest Frost Bites

Death of Independents greatly exaggerated

productivity stairway to heaven 2017Death of Indie
dealers greatly 

exaggerated?

Market trends turn against
impersonal, cold bigboxes


Does size matter? The office market over the past 35yrs has been dominated by bigboxes & Amazon's lead in business supplies, points to a continuation. But emerging trends show the big guys are declining fast & Amazon peaking. The rise of progressive resellers providing 'personalised productivity services' embracing mobile technology, can & will succeed.. Tomorrow

Read More...

BSA's Industry Week plan quashed

Screen Shot 2019 04 20 at 11.25.07 AM'Industry Week'
plan quashed 

Plan B? Go for IDC
'Biz Productivity' show


The Business Supplies Association (BSA) plan to rationalise vendors' heavy schedule of 20+pa shows & create an 'Industry Week' has been quashed. Understandably, leading wholesalers & resellers wouldn't cooperate. Great idea, so what's Plan B?  We feel consideration be given to a more customer centric 'Business Productivity Show'  for the IDC. We spoke w/BSA pres Barry Lane... Monday

Read More...

Workplace Wellness programs - Do they work?

Screen Shot 2019 04 19 at 2.25.47 PMDo Workplace
W e l l n e s s
programs work?

Changing behavior; gains
in motivation prove tough


Company workplace wellness programs — efforts to get workers to lose weight, eat better, stress less and sleep more — are an $8 billion industry in the U.S. Recent research reports heathier behaviour, but not necessarily healthier results? We discuss findings...

Read More...

Marketing: User behaviour beats Demographics

Personalised emarketingUser behaviour
bts demographics

Personalised marketing the 
new segmentation strategy


Marketing Week's Charlotte Rogers
reports that
research shows marketers are shifting away from classic demographics to find more accurate ways to segment users based on their behaviour and personal interests...Updated

Read More...

Sycamore Partners: Beauty or BEAST?

Screen Shot 2019 03 27 at 12.32.29 PMSycamore Partnrs:
Beauty or BEAST?

Analysts: Is $1Bn loan hike
a road to ruin e.g.ToysRUs?


Vulture capitalist Sycamore Partners owner of Staples & Essendant recently hiked the former's debt load by $1Bn to $5.2Bn, with estimated interest payments of $400m+ pa or c3%/sales. Many analysts ask: Is this a repeat of the ToysR Us bankruptcy situation; and Sycamore's Nine West demise? We discuss... Complete

Read More...

Retail retreat runs rampant

doomed catalog retailRetail retreat
runs rampant 

Buying habits change
puts bigboxes in peril


The NYTimes reported yesterday that "planned retail store closures in the US already exceed 2018 total". A similar story applies in bigbox business supplies, with Staples & Depot expected to merge or accelerate closures this year...

Read More...

Staples Rebrand draws skeptics

Screen Shot 2019 04 02 at 2.59.13 PMStaples rebrand
draws skeptics

Forbes writers: 'Complex
solution...simple challenge'


Staples
r
ebrand of its logo, webstore and 5 new private labels under the 'WorklifeFulfilment' byline has attracted much interest in marketing circles e.g. Forbes. We discuss the comments, criticisms and conclusions ...Updated

Read More...

Marketing to Baby Boomers mistake

Screen Shot 2019 04 09 at 12.49.49 AMMarketing to baby

boomers mistake

'Forever Young' Gen prove
its about 'attitude' not age


Marketing segmentation this century has coralled consumers into age groups: Baby Boomers, 'GenY' aka 'Millennials' & 'GenZ'. Its not working its 'marketing mush'. It's more about attitude not age writes FT's Michael Skarpinker

Read More...

Global Slowdown happening - Prepare!

Screen Shot 2019 03 04 at 11.56.31 AMBatten down for
global slowdown

Corp growth decelerates
in US/EU, B2B/B2C mkts


Economic data across advanced global economies have deteriorated since Q3'18, indicating fading growth and the need to prepare for slowing demand reports the Financial Times. Gear your business to help customers save money & time... Provide Managed Productivity Services! Here's how....

Read More...

Original Brands v Private Label War ignites

Screen Shot 2019 04 04 at 1.16.16 PMPrivate L a b e l
propagandists?

Bigboxes battle brands w/
"users indifferent" rhetoric?


Staples
launch of 'Worklife Fulfilment' products is the latest bigbox to push private label following Amazon, Depot's Workonomy; and fated Adveo & old OfficeMax iterations. Meanwhile, core delivery service competence drags. What's the motive? Where's the valid user research? Where's the vendor partnership? Updated

Read More...

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