Sectors

Readings: Consumer Goods & Services

Horse DNA Trading

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Cloning is a term met with a good deal of skepticism and fear. This is somewhat justified, but can there be uses that would make its techniques valuable and ethical? The performance horse industry believes it can. It has already achieved success and acceptance in several divisions using techniques mastered by Crestview Genetics of Texas. The company hasn't let its success whither. It's now considering limited forays into human cloning to aid areas such as diabetes research. Crestview claims to be worth $75 million.

The Everyman Ride For the Upper Half

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Tesla Model 3, which starts at $35,000, has racked up almost half a million reservations and is drawing more deposits by the day. However, price creep for better-equipped models could reduce that number. CEO Elon Musk described plans to quickly ramp up output of the Model 3 as “production hell” for workers at Tesla’s lone car assembly plant in Fremont, California.

The Hatchet Men And the Hot Dog

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Brazil's 3G Capital has grown by buying well-known consumer product companies and cutting costs. It typically makes deep cuts to expenses, including closing factories, laying off workers, and getting rid of expensive perks. To grow, it also looks to grow market share in countries where the brands are less well known.

The Hatchet Men and the Hot Dog

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

"I wish I were an Oscar Mayer Weiner." But would you want to own the company and be responsible for this product line? 3G Capital, along with Warren Buffett, decided they did, though not only that brand but all of Kraft's brands. The wiener does represent a sound microcosm of the problems facing large brands that were stalwarts over the past century. 3G is known for cost cutting to gain returns on their investments. They are taking a new approach with Oscar Mayer.

China’s Elusive Goal: A Global Apparel Brand

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Sophisticated Chinese apparel manufacturers are behind most leading global apparel brands, and some would like to move forward with their own global brands. Down coat maker Bosideng’s retreat after five years in London is a cautionary tale.

That Seventies Startup

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

When we think of entrepreneurs in the Internet and computing world, we typically envision young mavericks with concepts derived from their state-of-the-art classes at top colleges. Here we see three guys well over seventy who have come up with a competitive product in the arena of IT security. Their perspective differs from those following the more traditional approach but may still be as effective.

China's Elusive Goal: A Global Apparel Brand

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Gao Dekang grew Bosideng from a small factory with eleven workers to a global apparel powerhouse and the largest maker of down coats in China. As a manufacturer, Bosideng makes coats for many well known brands, including Adidas, North Face, and Columbia Sportswear. Domestically in China, Bosideng has a strong brand, but it has had difficulty taking its brand global.

Innovation: Needle Grinder

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Disposal of needles used in the medical field are a concern for both society and risk-control managers involved in the waste-management field. Sterilis, a small startup firm located in Massachusetts, has created a unit that is said to save $1,000 per month in disposal costs.

Wal-Mart Cracks the Whip on Suppliers

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As it increases wages, cuts prices, and moves to compete with Amazon, Wal-Mart is looking for efficiencies wherever it can find them. By stepping up the pressure on suppliers to make nearly perfect deliveries, Wal-Mart expects to both increase revenue and lower costs.

Globalism Is Alive and Well

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Carlos Ghosn has assembled an alliance of auto manufacturers that has a global reach. He successfully turned around the struggling French auto company Renault, and later was successful with Nissan. The alliance now includes Mitsubishi, AvtoVaz, and Dongfeng.

Pins and Needles in the Heart of the Alps

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Forster Rohner AG produces fine textiles and lace in factories in Switzerland, Romania, and China. The factory in Switzerland is highly automated, while also employing highly skilled workers who prepare very detailed work by hand. In addition to its 250 Swiss employees, the company employs another 640 at factories in Romania and China, where lower priced goods are produced.

Uber Without the Smartphone

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Common Courtesy helped design Uber Central and has inspired dozens of copycats. Retired couple Anne and Bob Carr and like-minded small businesses have made Uber and Lyft more senior-friendly.

Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Appraisers

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Advances in big data at Zillow Group Inc. and elsewhere are helping automation creep into knowledge-based professions. Freddie Mac, a big force in the U.S. mortgage market, is allowing some loans to go through without an appraisal by a human being.

Stand By . . . Scanning for Viruses and Secrets

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

It would appear that simply the inclusion of the word "Russia" sparks fears of espionage and fears of collusion to destroy the United States. To ramp that up even more, include cybersecurity in the discussion.

Mobile Carriers Start Hanging Up on Africa

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The past decade has seen a significant buildup of mobile phone networks across Africa, with countries auctioning spectrum to multinational bidders that hoped to cash in on the projected growth of subscribers on the continent. The costs involved, along with new regulatory hurdles, have caused some multinational telecom firms to scale back on their investments. One new wrinkle is requiring mobile phone operators to at least partially list their shares on local exchanges and make stock ownership available to local investors.

The Crazy Math Behind Drug Prices

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Insulin prices have soared 270 percent in the past 10 years. Intermediaries that negotiate to lower prices may cause them to increase, too. Courts are being asked to rule on the role of pharmacy benefit managers in that inflation.

Cash Comes Back in India

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The Indian government invalidated some denominations of the rupee almost overnight, to curtail the shadow economy, giving a sharp boost to digital payments. However Indians have used cash for about 98 percent of consumer payments. There is a huge trust deficit toward mobile phone apps and cards for digital transactions.

Want a $1 Million Paycheck? Skip College and Go Work in a Lumberyard

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Vocational education is no longer a focus of the U.S. educational system, and most U.S. high school students start college. With rising college debt and many blue-collar jobs going unfilled, other paths are now getting more attention. 84 Lumber is one of the companies bringing attention to high-paying blue-collar job opportunities through high profile ads and training programs.

Man vs Machine Dermatology

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

"There is an app for that" has become a favorite phrase in our society. In many ways, it has addressed the way we seek to address our health care needs. While not an app, this evaluative mechanism uses technology to skip a step typically performed by dermatologists. The software is designed to evaluate the users skin for signs of skin cancer, allowing the person the advantages of early and accurate detection so that the doctor can focus on treatment.

Myanmar's Hotel Room Glut

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As Myanmar's government is transitioning, it clearly sees the opportunity for tourism development, and it has strongly encouraged it by creating some of the necessary infrastructural components. Unfortunately, the tourism sector has yet to kick in, and this is causing some consternation.

Target Slips Up

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The No. 2 U.S. discounter, Target, faces a revitalized Whole Foods, backed by a deep-pocketed parent-to-be. Retailers are adding groceries to their mix because they keep customers coming back. But Target gets only 20 percent of sales from food, while Wal-Mart gets 56 percent.

Where Buffett Failed

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A ten-person shoemaking startup in Maine is trying to keep the craft of hand-sewn footwear profitable in the era of globalization.

Finally, a Cheap(ish) iPhone

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Apple is making old iPhones new again to win India. Old-gen models like the 5S make up more than half of Apple’s shipments to the subcontinent.

A Billionaire Emerges on the Silicon Steppe

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A Russian software billionaire takes on SAP and Oracle. Boris Nuraliev has built a fortune with enterprise software tailored to Russian needs. He uses a franchise model in which partners are licensed to install its software and adapt it to the needs of each particular business.

A Reputation for Badoo Behavior

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The aligning of corporate culture with the vision and mission of the organization has always been assumed to be a strong antecedent to higher levels of performance. With companies such as Badoo, a dating site popular in Russia and Latin America, the human resource practices used to attract and retain personnel have flown in the face of current acceptable practices. Parties that include risqué activities have become legendary in its corporate offices in London. This troubles some, but obviously attracts the talent that Andrey Andreev, its founder, perceives to create the environment conducive to growing his profitable business.

Putting Home Sales Ahead of Paperwork

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Real estate companies are using cloud computing to save time and money when buying and selling homes. Agents are spending less time scheduling and more time selling. Innovative ideas and processes using cloud computing are enhancing real estate sales and marketing.

China’s Foodmakers Try New Growth Recipes

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chinese food producers have a bad reputation in their home market for quality and safety, limiting their pricing and growth opportunities. So they are acquiring foreign brands to overcome the cynicism of Chinese consumers.

Cessna Flights for the Masses

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The basic concept of Uber is now spreading into other transportation arenas as well. A new California-based startup, Blackbird Air Inc., is providing a ride-sharing app for short-distance air travel. The app matches travelers that are time constrained with flights originating from general aviation airfields. These passengers would otherwise tie up valuable time using commercial air travel or driving to their destination. The price is significantly lower than chartering a flight.

China's Foodmakers Try New Growth Recipes

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Concerns over food safety and contamination have led many Chinese consumers to prefer Western brands. In order to help bolster their reputation and move up-market into premium brands, large Chinese food conglomerates have purchased Western food companies. One of the largest deals was the almost $7 billion WH Group paid for U.S.-based Smithfield Foods, the world's largest pork processor.

The Airbnb of Warehousing

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Flexe Inc., a four-year-old startup, has attained a competitive position against the powerful Amazon.com juggernaut based upon an expanded network of warehousing space created by strategic alliances that take advantage of seasonal supply-and-demand mismatches. It's a solid strategy because Flexe has already attained 25 percent of Amazon's warehouse capacity and has plans to add 10 million square feet within the year. The company's business model is not to become the face of its clients but to become a conduit for efficiently delivering vendors' products to their end customers relative to Amazon's model.

Augmenting Snap’s Financial Reality

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Snapchat is piloting ads built into pricey custom Lenses. It says a third of Snapchat users play with Lenses and geofilters daily. It remains to be seen whether the Lenses are effective or Facebook-proof.

This Home Camera Can Tell Who’s There

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Current technologies allow people to remotely access cameras in their home, or at work, to see if anyone enters and ascertain what they are doing. This is useful, but many times, the alert is triggered by people who are supposed to be there, and it is more bothersome than useful. Using 3D sensors and facial recognition software, Lighthouse, a startup, is improving the efficiency of these cameras by only bringing the exceptions to the user's mobile device.

Juno Got Sold, and Its Drivers Got Stiffed

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Rather than sharing in a windfall when Juno was acquired, drivers who held unvested shares in the new ride-hailing company were informed that the stock plan was void. Some of these drivers had left Uber because of the chance to own an equity interest as well as Juno's promise to treat drivers with respect and fairness. Less than a year later, the company that promised to treat drivers better than Uber seems to have broken that promise.

Kaplan Sells Its College But Keeps Its Profits

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Purdue University has teamed up with the for-profit Kaplan higher-education chain to sell online degrees. It is a way for for-profit colleges to shed a tarnished label and still stay in business. It helps public universities expand their reach with online degrees targeting older Americans—many of them minorities—who are unable to attend traditional schools.

Innovation: Synthetic Tissues

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

3-D printing has been a topic of conversation and application for over a decade now, but making prototypes of products and even finished products for consumer use has been the focus. Now materials are being developed that allow for healthcare applications including bone and cartilage materials tailor-made for the patient and even the very real possibility of creating organic tissues for such problems as chronic liver failure.

Whole Foods Market’s Identity Crisis

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Whole Foods Market CEO John Mackey’s new book, The Whole Foods Diet, furthers his mission to improve people’s health through diet. But investors are concerned about a lack of action to reverse a sales slump and falling stock price.

Whole Foods Market's Identity Crisis

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Whole Foods Market was long the darling of the ecologically sensitive investors in that they tapped into a solid market that had a loyal and growing client base and high profit margins. As many mass retailers began to move into the grocery sector and also the organic/ecologically advantaged products market, they began to first thwart the growth of Whole Foods Market, but now there are also concerns of reducing sales and profits.

Whole Foods Market’s Identity Crisis

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Six straight quarters of declining same-store sales have forced Whole Foods Market, which has about 440 U.S. stores, to close stores and rein in costs. It has been pushing digital coupons and promotions while working to lower costs.

Nice Stent If You Can Get It

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A clot-retrieving stent can dramatically reduce long-term healthcare costs and enhance the quality of life for people who have had strokes, yet it is only extensively used in roughly 150 stroke centers in the United States. While initial cost for installation of the stent is about $17,000 more than that of traditional treatment methods, its outcome is better, and the long-term savings could be about $23,000.

Munchery Stiffs Early Backers and Cuts Staff in a Bid for Survival

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Munchery Inc., a food delivery startup, has blown through $120 million over the past 7 years and needs further investment of around $15 million to shore up its position. In order to accomplish this recapitalization, they are having to reduce the stake of early investors and create convertible debt to entice reinvestments or new investments.

Jeff Bezos Goes Grocery Shopping

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Amazon’s goal is to become a Top 5 grocery retailer by 2025. This would require more than $30 billion in annual food and beverage spending through its sites, up from $8.7 billion—including Amazon Fresh and all other food and drink sales—in 2016.

The Smartest Machines Are Playing Games

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Artificial intelligence researchers are training their systems to master steadily more complex fantasy worlds. The holy grail is solving not one game but any game with multiple players and imperfect information, as in the real world.

Blockchain Can Grow More Than Just Money

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Ethereum could present a whole new way to run a business, but there are some serious kinks to work out. Ethereum’s ledger can store fully functioning computer programs called smart contracts.

Will Bad Beef Taint Brazil's Meat Master?

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Brazil's JBS SA is the world's largest meat producer and is preparing to raise additional funds via bond sales and a partial stock listing. JBS has grown through a series of acquisitions, spending $20 billion in the past decade. Recent investigations into the bribing of Brazilian meat inspectors to overlook food safety violations are now spooking foreign customers and threatening to derail JBS's stock offering.

A Mouse (Maker) Roars at the Industry’s Giants

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Logitech has prospered lately with mice and keyboards that complement the PCs and mobile devices of industry leaders Apple, Google, and Amazon. Now the company wants to compete with them for a central role in the emerging home automation market.

Now on EBay: Russian Micro-Multinationals

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Small firms are using EBay to reach markets across borders. In Europe, sellers can now sign up to have items listed in multiple countries and have the descriptions translated into local languages. For EBay, more than half the company's revenue now comes from international markets.

$400 Million Richer By Pinching Pennies

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The online grocery delivery startup, Instacart Inc., is looking to pinch pennies, starting with bottle deposit fees. It's working to increase ad revenue as it tries to prove it’s the exception in a field of delivery-app failures.

India's War Over Water — and Soft Drinks

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Retailers in several areas of India have decided to pull Coke and Pepsi products from their shelves. Behind this boycott is a combination of nationalism, support for small farmers who need water for irrigation, and concern over water quality and shortages. Coke and Pepsi are perceived as "foreign" firms that are making money off from a valuable national natural resource: water.

These Are the 50 Most Promising Startups You've Never Heard of

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With an initial list of around 50,000, market researcher Quid used an algorithm including prior leadership team experience, time between rounds of financing, education of founding team members, and more subjective issues such as attractiveness of industry.

Selling China on Cheese

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Foreign dairy companies have found it difficult to enter the Chinese consumer market with milk, butter, cheese, and other dairy products. The food-service industry, however, which supplies restaurants and cafeterias, appears to be easier to enter while having lower margins. In order to encourage Chinese chefs to use more dairy products in their cooking, foreign dairy companies are holding workshops and investing in training kitchens to help introduce dairy products to Chinese chefs.

Uber’s Taxicab Confessions

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Uber was a pioneer in the development of the modern sharing economy. In recent months, however, it seems to be facing both legal and public relations challenges. This spate of incidents is putting Uber's leadership, corporate culture, and business practices under a spotlight.

The Greatest Generation Is Now Around the Corner

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

5G will be great for streaming video but will also enable a new world of connected cars, drones, and robots. The future cellular networks will generate $3.5 trillion in economic output.

Should Farmers Fear Trump?

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The U.S. agriculture industry depends heavily on exports, with more than half of U.S. wheat, rice, cotton, and soybean production traded overseas. Uncertainty over Trump’s farm policy, along with his administration’s clear signals to scuttle multilateral trade agreements, could be good news for farmers in Russia, Brazil, and Ukraine. With Trump pulling out of the Trans Pacific Partnership on trade, which was backed by farmers, countries that remain in the partnership may have preferential access to important markets.

Innovation: Needle Camera

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Using a tiny camera at the end of an elongated needle, the Mi-eye2, the only product of Trice Medical, can enter into an injured joint and provide superior visual information about the type and extent of the injury. This allows the proper type of treatment to be determined without the degree of risk of orthoscopic units as well as the superior imaging than MRIs can provide.

Survival of the Fitted

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Data mining by traditional brick-and-mortar fashion retailers is not a new thing, but third party data tracking in the internet era is creating advantageous data that can lead to better targeting. Le Tote, a fashion rental service that uses products from such traditional retailers as the French Connection, collects data on the level of satisfaction of their customers (who pay a fee for their service) and now partners with the retailers to help meet the needs of consumers in a tailor-made way.

Big Meat Braces for a Labor Shortage

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Slaughterhouses and meatpacking plants are not the most enjoyable places to work, and while the pay typically exceeds minimum wage, employers have a hard time attracting and keeping employees. In order to keep operations running and meat prices at levels customers have come to expect, plants have increasingly turned to immigrant and/or refugee labor. With the recently announced travel and refugee ban, many workers that had hoped to build a life in America and bring their families to join them, now wonder if they can ever achieve the American Dream, and meat processing plants wonder if they will be able to find enough workers to fill the jobs.

Survival of the Fitted

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

E-commerce companies are tapping data for clothes and other goods. Old-school retail rivals want them, too. In the U.S., French Connection is tweaking its clothing based on feedback supplied by mail-order styling services.

The End of Terrible Wi-Fi May Be Near

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Consumers have been frustrated with slow Wi-Fi issues, particularly in the home. With gaming, appliances, and information-oriented products vying for access, it has been a frustrating constraint for service providers such as Comcast. Innovative new firms have begun to incrementally improve this environment and seem to be establishing a great deal of value by doing so.

Can Sneaker Makers Come Home Again?

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Athletic footwear makers may bring some manufacturing back to the United States to save on shipping and perhaps avoid a Trump Twitter tirade. But the factories are likely to be highly automated and create few jobs.

The Chinese Rediscover Luxury

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A crackdown on bribery and concerns over conspicuous consumption have slowed demand for luxury goods in China. Data suggests that the country's wealthier consumers haven't stopped spending, however; rather, they've shifted their consumption pattern. The end result may mean a more sustainable growth rate for makers of high-end goods.

Innovation: Pocket DSLR

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

There has remained an industry of Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) cameras whose sole purpose is high resolution photography. While mobile devices such as phones have improved their resolution, there were barriers in place that kept them from attaining parity with the DSLR format. Rajiv Laroia, a cofounder of Light, has developed a method by which the barrier has been drastically altered and the quality of photos taken with a phone sized unit can closer approximate the performance of stand alone cameras.

In Brazil, It's Now Beer—Without the Babes

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Brazil is an important market in the worldwide beer industry, and this is the season for summertime beer ads. Compared to other years, however, the ads are a little more tame and less sexy. While this may be partly related to changing advertising norms, it also reflects the increasing importance of women as customers.

The Latest Shortage: Fast-Food Workers

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A falling unemployment rate is contributing to rising wages for workers at fast-food restaurants and discount stores. Many fast-food restaurants are finding that they need to work harder to keep employees, including paying higher wages and providing better benefits. Some managers are also finding that it is more important to pay attention to employees, including knowing their names and making them feel valued and important.

Unionize Me

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The on-demand economy is changing consumer behaviors and business models. It is also creating challenges for classifying workers as employees versus independent contractors. Uber and other well-known enterprises continue to grapple with this issue, but Handy, a less well-known startup, is proposing legislation that could create a compromise offering workers limited benefits without full employee rights.

Netflix Presents: Building a World of Binge-Watchers

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Netflix has been gradually building a subscriber base in Central and South America. A key step in attracting customers to its subscription video service was to help develop the infrastructure that facilitated high-speed streaming. Netflix has also developed original content specifically for South American consumers.

Innovation: Drone-Catching Drone

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A drone to stifle other drones by capturing them in a net. How much of a market is there, and how long will it last?

Make All Rent Checks Payable to: Wall Street

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Private equity firms snapped up homes after the real estate bust. Wall Street, America's new landlord, kicks tenants to the curb.

Tired of Halal Chicken? Try the Eyeshadow

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Sales of makeup aimed at the Muslim market are growing fast. The trend “carries a certain stigma with the average American.”

Where Did You Get That Lovely Supply Chain?

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Kering, the corporate parent of many famous fashion brands, including Yves Saint Laurent, Puma, and Gucci, has taken steps to improve the business practices of its suppliers down the supply chain. Francois-Henri Pinault has followed in his father's footsteps in developing a corporate culture that tries to make the world a better place while also making money. Each year the company produces a corporate sustainability report that outlines steps it takes to make the world a better place while also making high-end luxury products.

Greening Business, One Project at a Time

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Generate Capital, a startup venture fund specializing in green infrastructure projects, has obtained $500 million in investor funds to foster new green technologies and facilitate their adoption into mainstream use. Jigar Shah, founder of SunEdison, started Generate Capital with a couple of McKinsey consultants under the notion that the $1 Trillion market would not be a few huge players, but many smaller players that gain market access and proof of design and value.

So Let's Talk About That Seafood Platter

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The global supply chain that brings shrimp and fish to your neighborhood restaurant or grocery store can be very opaque. For centuries, aquaculture has been a part of the Chinese food supply, and the Chinese seafood industry has grown to become one of the largest producers and exporters in the world. Concerns over the use of antibiotics and the safety of the food has raised concerns among Western regulators, causing Chinese firms to use transshipment techniques to avoid certain tariffs and import inspections.

Everybody Must Get Streamed

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Startup Livestream is selling preachers, wannabe stars, and ExxonMobil on tools to improve their online video broadcasts. It buys display ads on websites that just show a customer’s stream, a service it calls “audience booster.”

Hulu Reboots for a Post-Cable Age

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

For owners Comcast, Fox, Disney, and Time Warner, the Internet streaming service Hulu has been their beachhead in the increasingly popular world of video streaming. Now Hulu plans to offer live TV to strengthen its position against leaders Netflix and Amazon but may simultaneously continue to erode their owners’ cable TV businesses.

Namaste. Now Try My Herbal Toothpaste.

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Global personal care product companies such as Unilever and Colgate-Palmolive have started to see their market share in India decline, as local firms offering natural ayurvedic products grab market share. Focusing on all-natural ingredients, and using marketing based on yoga-gurus and an emphasis on balance in life, firms such as Patanjali have continued to gain market share. Patanjali has grown to hold more than 1 percent of India's market, with its principal owner now worth about $2.5 billion. More local competition is entering the market, and the large conglomerates are starting their own lines of ayurvedic products.

Secret Formula

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Leading apparel retailer Zara rejects the label fast fashion because of the company's focus on design. Yet its designers are driven by sales and consumer data as they deliver fresh styles to stores twice weekly.

Secret Formula

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A unique management formula may be why Inditex’s revenue growth—up 11 percent in the first half of 2016—far outpaces its rivals. The biggest fashion retailer is thriving as rivals falter. It has virtually no ad budget apart from social media marketing.

Pet Food That Comes With an Oil Painting

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chewy, a pet supply store that specializes in creating a superior customer service experience online by sparing no expense, has developed into an $880 million revenue company. Unfortunately, its expenses have exceeded its revenue, but the company has solid financial backing and dreams of becoming even larger.

Secret Formula

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As competitors struggle, Zara continues to thrive. It's known as a fast-fashion company supported with a supply chain that allows quick turnarounds. Some facets of Zara’s business model may be imitable, but its approach to management, unique decision-making process, and organizational culture may be able to sustain the company's success.

Secret Formula

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Inditex's business model for fast fashion allows it to frequently update its inventory and adapt its offerings to different tastes in different countries. Rather than rely on lead designers to try and predict or create fashion trends, the company uses data and a team of designers to continually shift production at its factories. Since a large portion is produced near the Inditex's headquarters in Spain, new designs can move quickly into production and onto store shelves in Europe.

America's Got No Talent

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The semi-unanticipated results of the past Presidential election have sent shock waves through the political/economic sectors that did not have a favorable outcome. One such area is that of technology sectors focused in Silicon Valley. The availability of talent from Asian countries is perceived to be in jeopardy. Will this create a international competitive disadvantage for the United States?

Instagram Tries to Ease Users Into Shopping

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Instagram is testing whether letting brands tag photos with links will succeed where other social media marketing has failed. It is part of its broader strategy for helping people pick out and buy things.

Want Fries with that Kale Salad?

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Fast-food chains are shelling out millions to purge preservatives, artificial ingredients, and other unmentionables. Skeptics question health claims.

Innovation: Gryphon Router

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With so many smart devices being routed wirelessly in our homes and businesses, they have become a prime target for cyberattacks. John Wu, a veteran in the W-Fi arena at the age of forty-two, has come up with a router that can stop attacks at the entry level, thereby protecting the devices.

China's High-End Retail Emporium

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Over the past two years, Walmart has repositioned the 14 Sam's Club stores in China to offer more expensive products. The focus is on "aspirational customers," or those who want to show off their wealth. Flat-screen TVs, BMWs and fine wines are on display.

Innovation 3D-Printing Recycler

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

University of British Columbia students wasted a lot of plastic while making prototypes for robotics classes but addressed this problem by developing the ProtoCycler, a desktop machine that converts plastic waste into 3D-printer filament. While this is good for the environment, the recycled filament may also have a cost advantage over premade filament.

Hey Guys, Watch This

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Hawkers, a Spanish sunglasses brand, has become a Facebook and Twitter case study. It illustrates that you do not need lots of money to spread the word. Saldum Ventures, the parent company of Hawkers, has sold 3.5 million pairs of sunglasses in three years with guerrilla marketing and heavy promotion on social media.

Home Is Where The Data Is

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The ability to store huge troves of data in the public cloud has created a burgeoning industry, but now, some companies are starting to want some degree of separation from the risks of public cloud storage. To that end, a sector called private cloud storage has found root as a sub-industry.

In Case of Low Revenue

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Twitter's "Firehose" of a half billion tweets a day is incredibly valuable — and just as dangerous. Find out how despots use Twitter to hunt dissidents.

What Do We Want? Uber Union

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Uber has unveiled the Independent Drivers Guild (IDG) to address driver concerns and pressure for unionization. Uber's partner behind the IDG has agreed not to seek unionization, at least until 2021.

Innovation Fighting Hearing Loss

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The Bloomberg Businessweek article "Innovation Fighting Hearing Loss" (October 31−November 6, 2016) assesses several potential solutions seeking to resolve hearing loss in patients.

Sustainable Cotton

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Cotton is a natural fiber, but its production has involved so much pesticide and water use that it is considered one of the world's dirtiest crops. Retailers, garment makers, and farmers have formed the Better Cotton Initiative to develop more sustainable produced cotton. "Better Cotton" may not meet the environmental standards of organic cotton, however it balances sustainability with a cost and is gaining a growing market share.

The Cheap Phone Is Dead In China

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

China's domestic smartphone makers are gaining worldwide market share. While the growth of Apple and Samsung in worldwide markets has slowed, Vivo, Oppo, TCL and Xiaomi are all growing. These companies are not just counting on growing sales in China, however, but also have their sites set on India and other growing markets.

What’s In Your Wallet

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A growing number of retailers look to strengthen ties with customers by combining convenient payment and rewards. Mobile wallets are the new loyalty program.

Packaging Salmon Jerky for the Masses

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Anne French, president of Dear North, a collaborative effort between Huna Totem (a Native Alaskan-owned company focused on tourism) and Ammunition (a company known for designing Beats, the popular headphones), dreamed of exporting consumer products that captured the Alaskan allure. The company has begun producing first product: salmon jerky. It aims to sell to the Lower 48 states, be in 700 outlets by the end of the year, and earn $1 million in its first year.

K E $

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Sororities are a lucrative market for a fashion brand. It’s a natural human thing to want to belong. Win the sorority girl, win the American wardrobe. Companies such as Kendra Scott, Lilly Pulitzer, and upstarts like Southern Tide see half a million potential in customers ready to spend.

Look Familiar?

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Google's new high-end Pixel smartphones will compete directly with Apple's iPhone, but also with Samsung and HTC and the rest of Google's Android partners. Google says it will treat its new hardware division just like the other Android partners and is confident it can keep it all together.

Google Has Its Own Phones. Now It Needs New Retail Strategy

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Some wireless carriers are wary of Google's retail ability. Google sees software as its edge, rather than retail distribution and customer service.

This Deflation Has Grocers Fed Up

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Initiated by lower costs due to lower grain and oil prices, food prices have been falling for nine straight months. But food retailers seem to be engaged in a price war of cutthroat competition and irrational pricing.

A Different Kind of Apple a Day

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

It was bound to happen, and it was likely that Apple would be one of the pioneers. Attaching collection and connectivity to health data as a repository for tracking patient conditions is now becoming a real possibility, with the company leading the charge.

How Adidas Got Back in the Game

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Adidas's stock price is seeing a nice rise as the company picks up market share and sponsorship agreements. Part of the rise is fueled by a greater emphasis on fashion, including limited edition shoes. Adidas is also working with music entertainers to have them "design" shoes for the company.

This Deflation Has Grocers Fed Up

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Food, on average, makes up only about 15 percent of a consumer’s budget. Walmart effect combines with deflation to eat away at margins. Grocery stores are trying to compete on price through digital coupons and promotions.

EBay Tries to Push Past Its Tag-Sale Roots

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With the upscale Australian department store chain Myer, EBay created a Virtual Reality Department Store, giving away 20,000 "shopticals" that let shoppers browse merchandise via augmented reality. Differentiating EBay from Amazon is the centerpiece of CEO Devin Wenig’s strategy.

Using DNA Markers To Spot Bogus Fabrics

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

While difficult to fully ascertain once in the product, Egyptian cotton commands a premium price in the fabric markets. Media stories of fake goods sold claiming this expensive fabric but really using less expensive and inferior cotton have given consumer confidence a negative hit. Using DNA testing technology, it is now possible to validate samples to alleviate the concerns. A small company operating from a business incubator in New York is specializing in this process.

Flipping’s Back…With Crowdfunding

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

House flippers turn to the crowd for quick cash. What could go wrong? Wall Street is not as interested in financing single-family developments in smaller and medium-sized deals, making crowdfunding a better way to fund such projects.

Will Amazon Kill FedEx?

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Amazon has been building up its same-day delivery system for several years and recently began leasing airplanes. The idea that Amazon could challenge FedEx seems "fantastical" to FedEx CEO Fred Smith, but Amazon has been expanding into delivery in a big way with AmazonFresh, Prime Now, and Amazon Flex.

Why Do Wealthy People Auction Multimillion-Dollar Homes, Rather Than List Them?

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Hundreds of wealthy homeowners are taking the riskier route by auctioning their home in lieu of listing it. The client base has shifted from people who are selling their third, fourth, or even fifth homes, to older people who are downsizing.

As Flocks Shrink, Congregations Scramble to Adapt

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Those attending church regularly have declined dramatically in recent years, while those who never attend have increased. It would appear that the target of those who attend occasionally may provide an opportunity for survival, but will it look the same?

Hospitals Try Giving Patients a Dose of VR

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Hospitals are using virtual reality (VR) to take patients' minds off their pain or relieve their boredom. VR has been shown to swamp the brains sensory capacity, affecting its ability to create as many pain signals. As the cost of hardware and software come down, it is becoming a consideration for longer term treatment.

Slick as a Whistle Pig

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

After a number of failed ventures, Raj Bhakta’s “boutique” rye whiskey endeavor is a hit. But success is leading to conflict, as his partners and investors want to cash out, but he wants to build a family business. Bhakta’s personality and vision may have been key factors in WhistlePig’s success, but also may explain foibles that his partners cite in pending litigation.

Thinking Inside The Box

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Ad Magic has become the go-to maker for Kickstarter games. Ad Magic’s revenue has quadrupled since the company was hired to produce the popular Cards Against Humanity.

Peak Cheap in China

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

After burning billions of investor dollars to attract users and grow market share, mergers and acquisitions among China’s on-demand service providers promise to create dominant players and bring profits. The question is will Chinese users continue to call without the steep discounts.

Scaling Up Is Hard to Do

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Business incubators, accelerators, innovation labs, and a smorgasbord of other entities exist to create or jumpstart entrepreneurial endeavors, but a recent trend of note is to help existing small businesses take their goods and services to the next level.

Yasso's Big Fat Frozen Greek Yogurt Success

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

An unexpected occurrence offered the founders of Yasso, a five-year-old company with an already established market in the northeastern United States, an opportunity along with a decision to expand. The business now earns $50 million in sales.

Amazon's Shifting Tax Story

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Like many global technology companies, Amazon has actively pursued tax strategies that minimize the taxes it has to pay. In 2005, for example, it shifted certain intellectual property from the United States to a limited liability partnership in Luxembourg, valuing the assets at just over $200 million. Since then, those assets have generated revenue (e.g., licensing fees) of almost $6 billion. Now both the IRS and EU tax authorities are exploring whether Amazon has been underpaying taxes in their jurisdictions.

Walmart’s Crime Problem

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Crimes at Walmart stores keep local police departments busy. Walmart is aware of the problem and has taken steps to address it. Some, however, think the stores are doing too little too slowly, placing profits over people. This is a complex problem involving the intersection of business, government, and society, but other retailers seem to have fewer crimes committed on their premises.

A Watchful Lock Aimed at the Masses

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A lock that can be opened using smart device codes that are single use opportunities can lower the risk of general codes for building managers and their tenants. The device also allows for coordination with video devices that can assure security with multiple deliveries or pickups.

Every Move You Make Every Click You Take Every Game You Play Every Place You Stay I'll Be Watching

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

IDI has already built a profile on every American adult, including young people. Its database service, idiCORE, combines public records with purchasing, demographic, and behavioral data. IDI is the first to centralize and weaponize all that information for its customers.

Ed Bastian, CEO Delta Air Lines

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

CEO Ed Bastian attributes Delta’s bankruptcy to “a lot of dumb decisions.” A shift in strategy and better employee relations have helped Delta return to profitability. But industry consolidation and lower oil prices haven’t hurt.

Amazon Gains on Flipkart in India

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Amazon gains on Flipkart in India. Hobbled by self-inflicted wounds and a price war, the Indian e-commerce company is girding for battle with a deep-pocketed rival.

Amazon Gains on Flipkart in India

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

India is attracting multinational retailers like Amazon. Local competitors are working hard to maintain their lead.

Amazon Gains on Flipkart in India

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Flipkart's new CEO, Binny Bansal, is facing a tough challenge from retailer Amazon in the Indian e-commerce market. Bansal's leadership, focusing on reducing costs and improving efficiencies, is what the company needs as it tries to simultaneously cut costs and increase marketshare. While Amazon has been aggressive in signing up third-party retailers to its network, Flipkart has emphasized customer service and building customer loyalty.

Japanese Retailers Move into Vietnam

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Vietnam is attracting a number of foreign retailers as its economy expands, and the middle class develops. About 60 percent of the population is under thirty-five years old, suggesting even stronger future growth. Japanese retailers are staking out major positions in the Vietnamese market, while the domestic Japanese market remains mature.

This Owl Won't Save America's Jobs

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

In 2013, Wal-Mart announced a plan to encourage more manufacturing in the United States. Pledging to spend $250 billion over ten years on "Made in America" products, the goal was to entice companies to shift about 250,000 jobs to U.S.-based factories. While the results suggest that products can be efficiently manufactured domestically, with the program leading to an increase in U.S. manufacturing, the number of workers hired has not likely met the projections.

The Battle for Smart Car Data

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Connectivity in your automobile will be convenience, or an intrusive nightmare. Today's sensor-laden cars collect huge amounts of data for which marketers may pay dearly. Automakers want to control such sales.

Facebook Gave 1.65 Billion Users a Streaming Service Then This Happened

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

While live streaming capabilities have attracted even greater use from their core, Facebook is now struggling with what that means for them in terms of infrastructure investment and their responsibility to the public. Also of importance: does it lead to greater profits?

Blackstone Is Turning Tenants Into Owners

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Single-family landlords have been losing renters to homebuying. Blackstone Group LP’s Invitation Homes is selling in Arizona and California. Financial landlords look to profit from renters with dreams to buy.

Innovation: Ultrasonic X-Rays

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A technology that doesn't use radioactive means to provide superior imaging for dental offices? Sounds like a winner!

Down on the Farm, Out at Sea

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Worldwide salmon production is down, and prices are up. As salmon farming has become big business, regulations have increased, and obtaining permits has become more difficult. In response, producers are working on new technologies and techniques to lessen the environmental impact of salmon farming and reduce the incidence of natural parasites.

Stomping Grounds

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Kevin Plank, Under Armour’s founder and CEO, has many ambitions for his company. These include intertwined business and social objectives of becoming world’s biggest sportswear company and revitalizing the city of Baltimore. A passionate and visionary leader, Plank consciously seeks to use the company’s momentum to shape Baltimore’s future.

IPNOPE

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Kickstarter just did something tech startups never do: it paid a dividend. The company quietly made the first payment this spring and continues to say that it has no plans to go public.

Nestlé Takes Aim at Coffee Likers

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A cheaper brand of single-serve pods gets increasing attention. Nestlé's coffee business is competing with itself.

Taiwan's PC Makers are Gunning for Gamers

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

While PC manufacturers tend to compete in almost a perfect competitive environment, those that focus on giving gamers a small advantage and the ability to adapt are reaping strong profits relative to the enhanced price.

Material Progress: Five Substances of the Future

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

These five substances offer opportunities for secondary innovations that can make a myriad of products perform better.

Searsly?

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Sears seemed to falter with the rise of discount retailing. Then Kmart was outdone by Wal-Mart and Target. Merging the two hasn’t improved things. Now Sears wants to sell its top brands. Does that make sense as a turnaround strategy?

Building a Better Mouse Cage

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Using cheap sensors and monitoring devices, coupled with in-depth software, Vium, a company with $30 million in venture capital investment, is hoping to speed up the animal tests sector of the FDA process to provide its users with better inputs into the viability of human testing.

Eau De You

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Perfumers want your signature scent to be a mix of fragrances that can run $295 each. Perfumers embrace perfume “wardrobing.” Customers can mix colognes to create a more distinctive trademark, much like you’d mix pieces of clothing to form a one-of-a-kind ensemble.

An Amazon Wannabe Rises On the Steppes

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Yandex can lay claim to running Russia's most successful search engine, as well as Moscow's largest ride-sharing service. In doing so, it has beat out, or at least garnered a strong head start, on Google and Uber. Now it is attempting to do the same with online retailing, offering an Amazon-like marketplace while Amazon has yet to offer its service in Russia.

A Spanish Delicacy Grazes in Texas

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Importing pigs that are considered delicacies in Spain but relatively unknown in the United States can be a bit of a risky proposition. Two men in Texas believe that it is worth investing $3 million of their money to build a specialty market for these cured hams.

Making No Cents

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Congress created the U.S. Postal Service in 1970 to run the post office like a business. But it retained a political process for setting prices that has not been responsive to business needs.

Blockchain Goes Beyond Crypto-Currency

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Blockchain is the technology created to support bitcoin, but it may soon surpass the crypto-currency in importance. Investment in startups commercializing blockchain technology has eclipsed that in bitcoin-only companies.

Innovation: Delivery Robot

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Starship Technologies has built a robot capable of making deliveries to your house or business. Is this a viable market for robotics?

High Hopes for Satellites

Thomas Coe  |  Consumer Goods & Services

NASA isn’t launching many satellites, but commercial launches are expected to increase in the next few years. Satellite launches generate billions for the industry, but most of the revenues come from services that provide communications such as TV, cellular calls, and Wi-Fi connectivity.

The Market Sizes Up

Eric Cardella  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Brick-and-mortar clothing retailers have traditionally been reluctant to make plus-size clothing a prominent part of their product offerings. However, over the past several years the demand for plus-size clothing has outpaced smaller-size offerings.

Smartphone Makers Prep for a Rough Spell

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Apple, along with the smartphone industry, and its suppliers, are facing a maturing market with recent declines sales and stock values. They are trying to diversify through innovation but there doesn’t yet appear to be a next big thing.

Building Assisted Living for the 1 Percent

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Residents' monthly costs at Midtown assisted living building top $20,000. An owner of assisted living facilities is looking to get in on New York's luxury housing boom.

The Greening of Adidas

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Investments in energy efficiency can take years to pay back from cost savings so are often rejected by CFOs. But framing them as a portfolio with returns of over 20 percent convinced Adidas to invest millions per year.

The Greening of Adidas

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

An Environmental Defense Fund program recruits and trains MBA students to use traditional financing metrics and techniques to motivate companies to increase fuel efficiency. One of these students was ultimately able to use traditional financial measurements and objects to support capital investment in fuel efficiency projects at Adidas. Applying techniques from finance to sustainability matters can be important in attracting interest in energy efficiency projects.

German Engineering for Chinese Wannabes

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Germany's Borgward auto company was founded in 1924 and at one point was responsible for 60 percent of the country's auto exports. By 1961, however, it had gone out of business. Now the brand is being revived in China, with a Borgward SUV being manufactured by Chinese truck-maker, Beiqi Foton.

A Much Closer Look at Naptime

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Keeping up to date on your kids' day is only an app away now. Apps that digitize updates from preschools and day cares are becoming popular perks for parents.

Lawyers Attack Rivals in TV Spots

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Increased competition leads to more—and nastier—ads. Competition for clients is pushing up lawyer ad spending, which jumped to $823 million in 2015.

Detroit Has Valley Envy

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Mobility services, think Uber with self-driving cars, have the potential to disrupt the auto industry model of individual car ownership. So Detroit is seeking alliances with the tech companies and car sharing services behind that threat to strengthen their position.

An East German Challenge to the Swiss

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Last year, watch exports from Germany rose 14 percent, while Swiss watch exports fell 3 percent. Part of the difference in magnitude is driven by the significantly smaller size of the German watchmaking industry, but underlying economics help explain the trends. As the euro has fallen in value relative to the Swiss franc, German watches are relatively more affordable.

A New Dimension for Post-PC Taiwan

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As the technological world shifts to phone and portable methods of operation, the PC market has been dwindling. Mass manufacturers need to use their capacity for new products, and 3D printers seem to provide a new growth oriented market.

Green Is Good, But One Outdoor Outfitter Puts People First

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Cotopaxi is an outdoor recreation products company with a social mission rather than a more common environmental one. Even though it is a B Corp that gives a share of revenue to humanitarian organizations, it has attracted venture capital funding.

A Vegan Cheese Worthy of Chardonnay

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Making a non-dairy cheese has proven to be a difficult task to do well enough to please the discriminating palate. Lyrical Foods and its investors think they may have it and at just the right time.

Keeping It In the Family

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Founding a business and developing its brand is a lifetime task for many entrepreneurs. Letting go and passing it on to family is sometimes a far more difficult task.

Resuscitating Gap

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Gap returns to t-shirts in yet another bid for growth. Can the slumping company Gap figure out what shoppers want to wear?

Reclaiming Instant

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The Impossible Project aims to revive the business of making instant film and cameras that once put Polaroid at the top of the tech world. *This article is not available online.

Burt's Bees Goes From Big-Box to Upscale

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Clorox has successfully grown Burt’s Bees into a broad-market personal care brand through Walmart and Target, without losing its all-natural authenticity. Now it has successfully positioned the brand upscale internationally and has a very profitable business.

More than 1,000 Women Accuse Johnson & Johnson of Covering Up the Risks of Baby Powder

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The scent of Baby Powder may be more recognizable then that of chocolate, but Johnson & Johnson's iconic century-old product may be associated with more than wholesomeness. Some scientific studies have found an association between Baby Powder use and ovarian cancer. More than 1,000 women and their families are now suing Johnson & Johnson and its supplier of talc, Imerys, claiming the companies failed to warn customers about this risk. Regardless of the conclusiveness of the scientific studies, Johnson & Johnson's violation of customers’ trust puts the entire company’s brand at risk.

Showdown at the Electric Garage

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Tesla has busily developed a defensible position in high-end, electric-powered automobiles. With an inelastic demand curve as it relates to oil price fluctuations, their resilience is sound in that sector, but now they have to deal in a sector that is more affected by oil prices. Chevy is also interested in the sector, adding to the complexity in behavioral competitive issues.

Sowing the Seeds of a Farm Boom in Africa

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Africa's population is projected to more than double in the next 35 years, putting a strain on the continent's food supply. Africa already has a problem growing and distributing sufficient food. Years of farming practices that depleted nutrients in the soil has contributed to the problem. To help address the continent's food needs, major agricultural companies and NGOs are working on a variety of solutions.

At Work and Out of the Closet in the Heartland

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Despite inconsistent state laws regarding employment discrimination based on sexual orientation, a record number of companies has earned a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index. Economic incentives may be motivating companies like Hormel to outpace anti-discrimination laws with diversity and inclusiveness initiatives. By working to support a diverse workforce, these companies are creating value by creating workspaces that are attractive to younger workers.

The Journey of Jack Dorsey

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Twitter is one of the most recognized brands in the social media market even though it is yet to turn a profit. Co-founder and past (and again) CEO Jack Dorsey is not necessarily reflecting on the past of Twitter except to the extent it can guide the future into profitable domains to leverage the brand.

From Shared Values to Shared Quarters

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Scandinavian-style co-housing is gaining traction among boomers. The U.S. is home to more than 150 co-housing communities, with 14 more planned exclusively for seniors.

Move Fast and Break Things

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A decade after taking over General Electric, Jeff Immelt’s long bet on the Internet of Really Big Things seems to be paying off. But competitive challenges still exist.

Instacart, Brought to You by Red Bull

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Customers hate delivery fees, so Instacart went to retail partners to help. The grocery delivery startup says ads from General Mills, PepsiCo, and other consumer companies account for 15 percent of revenue.

Memo From Netflix: 'Ich Bin ein Berliner'

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

In order to attract European customers, an increasing number of content distribution companies like Netflix and Amazon are developing exclusive programs and series. Whereas the exclusive programming that Amazon and Netflix have developed in the U.S. to attract customers has some level of international appeal, in order to gain market share in European countries these firms are investing in original content tailored to each country's language and culture.

A Zara of Modesty Rises in Turkey

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Appealing to the tastes of conservative Muslim women in Turkey and around the Middle East is giving fast fashion retailer LC Waikiki an edge over global competitors like Zara and H&M.

A Zara of Modesty Rises in Turkey

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The Kucuk brothers have helped turn a French fashion retailer into a multinational company focused on conservative fashions for observant Muslims. Their chain, LC Waikiki, now has over 600 locations, with about a third outside Turkey. LC Waikiki tries to have a great range of stylish apparel for "covered women."

Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Retailers are beginning to use facial recognition software to collect data and engage with customers. While customers could benefit from personalized shopping experiences, using this technology involves customer surveillance and raises privacy concerns. The use of facial recognition technology in retail settings also has human resource, legal, and ethical implications.

Citigroup Faces Fraud Suit Claiming $1.1 Billion in Losses

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

When Oceanografia went under, investors blamed Citigroup for keeping it afloat with cash advances. Now the investors are suing Citigroup, maintaining that it colluded in the fraud that surfaced at Oceanografia.

Someone Didn’t Get the Memo

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

In a secret meeting convened by the White House, senior national security officials ordered agencies across the U.S. government to find ways to counter encryption software and gain access to the most heavily protected user data on the most secure consumer devices.

D-Mart Solves India’s Retail Riddle

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Nearly all supermarket chains lose money in India. However, D-Mart woos Indians with promises of all-year discounts and its cheap grocery prices fuel sales of higher-margin goods.

Startups Pitch VCs From Freezing Water

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

There is nothing like the threat of hypothermia to get an entrepreneur to cut to the chase when pitching their product or service. Using frigid water as a timer, a European elevator-pitch competition offers an $11,000 reward to the winner.

Someone Didn't Get the Memo

J. Vincent Eagan, JD, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Apple is resisting a court order to help the U.S. government gain access to the iPhone that belonged to the shooter in the San Bernardino attack. The government claims that it is asking for a one-time request for one device.

If You Are Anti Are you Anti?

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Until January 2014, Walmart rejected applications for spousal health benefits from employees who were legally married to same-sex spouses. By arguing that denying coverage to her same-sex spouse is a form of sex discrimination, an employee’s suit to recover costs incurred after Walmart denied her application for spousal health benefits has the potential to expand the scope of sex discrimination.

The $400,000 Man

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has developed a crash test dummy that measures 7 times as many variables as the current standard. Not only that, there is an implication that it can also provide more accurate measurements as well. They sent out for bids to produce this test dummy, and the winner was Humanetics Innovative Solutions. The contract could be quite lucrative, at $400,000 per unit.

Amazon's Plan to Take On UPS and Alibaba

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Amazon says it is building global delivery capabilities to supplement existing carriers during peak times, but internal documents suggest it is quietly building a major competitor in the global shipping and delivery business.

You Won't Find GrubHub Here

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Sometimes all the infrastructural elements are in place for leading industry transformation, allowing entrepreneurs to enter a market. It's also possible that some sociocultural (as well as economic) structural impediments keep the obvious from taking place, at least in the short run.

The Real Life Storage Wars

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Entrepreneurs and venture capital see an opportunity in storage. The $33 billion industry is still growing, and new on-demand business models look promising.

The Real Life Storage Wars

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The storage businesses will generate $33 billion in 2016, estimates research firm IBISWorld, up from $24 billion in 2010. More than 50,000 self-storage facilities are in the United States. Startups are trying to carve out a slice of the expanding storage industry by offering on-demand pickup and delivery.

Samsung’s Emerging Market Is . . . Japan?

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

While Samsung holds around 20 percent worldwide market share in smartphones, it has just 6 percent of the smartphone market in Japan. As it expanded worldwide, Samsung chose to focus on other emerging markets and largely left the Japanese market to local competitors. In fact, other than Apple, foreign phone makers have had difficulty entering the Japanese market.

No Cheers When Wal-Mart Packs Up

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Wal-Mart has long been criticized for driving mom-and-pop stores out of business in small towns and rural communities. Still, Wal-Mart stores served consumers and provided employment. As the company begins closing hundreds of stores, including all of its small Wal-Mart Express stores, small towns and rural areas are experiencing a whipsaw effect: When Wal-Mart stores close, communities are left without grocery stores or pharmacies. The company's decision to shutter stores and increase efficiency is partially explained by recent increases in wages. These wage increases may be seen as socially responsible, but the store closings in small towns and rural communities has an adverse effect.

Swiss Watches Take a Licking

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The Swiss watch industry is lowering prices and looking to new markets. High-end Swiss luxury watches saw sales drop 3.3 percent in 2015, the first annual decline since 2009.

Gaming's Growing Pains

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As gaming leagues show rapid growth and indications that they're growing profits too, the competitive arena for leagues and teams has ramped up. As profits become more certain, interest from major investors seeking to leverage their economies of scope and scale are beginning to enter the fray. In question are the distribution of overall industry profits (appropriation) throughout the key stakeholder groups involved and how the cooperation can create even more value.

Haier Has Higher Ambitions

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chinese appliance-maker Haier has become a major global competitor but, after fifteen years of trying, has yet to establish a strong position in the United States. Now it has acquired one by agreeing to pay $5.6 billion for GE’s appliance unit.

A Pressing Matter: The Olive Oil Trade

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The olive oil industry is based around the Mediterranean Sea. Tunisia, Spain, and Italy are the world's largest producers. While the United States is far behind in terms of production volume, California producers are taking a much more scientific approach to growing, harvesting, and processing olives.

Better Coffee Through Bacterial Chemistry

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Rarely do you think of going to pick up coffee with pricey brews made from the digestive results of a cat-like animal, but that's what Afineur is hoping people will do.

Haier Has Higher Ambitions

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Haier, a China-based manufacturing firm, is buying General Electric's appliance business for $5.4 billion. While General Electric appliances are well known in United States, the company has done little to expand its appliance business internationally. Haier has made some inroads in the U.S. market and expanded in other markets both through growth and acquisitions. This acquisition will help Haier move from a small to significant player in the U.S. appliance market.

The Challenges for Smart-Gun Makers

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The second amendment to the constitution and protection of the public interest square off. Creating safety devices to limit misuse of constitutional rights seems like it might be a profitable realm of technology development, but beware of consumer demands.

Small Coffee Goes Venti

Thomas Coe  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The success of small, independent coffee roasters signals a strong demand for their processes and products. Craft beans are following the path of craft beer.

Meal Plan

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

After experimenting with a variety of business models for its meal delivery business, Munchery has settled on one that gives it greater control of operations and customer experience, but with high fixed costs. This could give it a more sustainable competitive advantage.

Spotify Isn't Laughing Off This Lawsuit

J. Vincent Eagan, JD, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Musicians are suing Spotify for failing to fully pay for songs that it streams. Some of the suits are seeking class-action status.

Spotify Isn’t Laughing Off This Lawsuit

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A lawsuit could result in Spotify having big liabilities from unpaid royalties. How much are these potential liabilities? And how is Spotify dealing with them?

Peanut Patch: Allergy Fighter

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A tiny patch designed by Pierre-Henri Benhamou of DBV Technologies, a French firm, has shown promise in helping its users overcome one of the most widespread and dangerous food allergies: peanuts.

Innovation Dojo

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Apps have made it relatively common to have remotely controlled systems in the home. Unfortunately, these systems can be hacked, creating massive losses both financially and even physically. Dojo, a cybersecurity system domiciled in Israel and designed to pick up on hacking attempts on home systems, has garnered over $1 million in seed money for their solution to this problem.

The Sustainable Locally Sourced Free-Range Humanely Raised Made-to-Order Toxic Burrito

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

At what price has Chipotle focused on providing “food with integrity?” After three different pathogens have caused five outbreaks and sickened hundreds of Chipotle customers across the United States, Chipotle is shifting its focus to food safety. This shift, however, means a departure from many established organizational routines and practices.

At Walmart, a Season For Guns and Tinsel

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Amid anxiety over mass killings, arms and ammo keep selling. America's gun king, Walmart, is geared up for the holiday rush.

Opening a Nationwide Mobile Wallet

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

While most Peruvians have mobile phones, only 20 percent have a bank account. That means a lot of cash transactions take place, and cash also attracts criminals. Peru has introduced a money system using mobile phones that has the support and involvement of all the country's banks. The system also can work on simple low-tech phones and 2G networks, in the hopes that poor people in rural areas will use the system for simple transactions.

Building an Arsenal of Smartwatch Smarts

Thomas Coe  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Swatch has filed smartwatch-related patents in recent years, even though CEO Nick Hayek has been dismissive of the devices. Swatch has been burned by earlier forays into new technologies.

Small Suppliers Big Problems

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chipotle prides itself on serving fresh, healthy fast food, using local vegetable suppliers wherever possible and meat from animals raised without added hormones and antibiotics. These goals for freshness and healthy ingredients complicate supply chain management, however, and have led to shortages of certain ingredients. More troubling is the recent rash of food-borne illnesses that have been traced to Chipotle restaurants across the country.

Winning Nobels and Delighting Investors

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

For shareholders of Hamamatsu Photonics KK, there are plenty of reasons to celebrate. Apart from helping to advance our understanding of the universe, the company’s sensors play important roles in everything from X-ray machines to DNA sequencers. Hamamatsu has a 90 percent global market share in the devices known as photomultipliers and a stock price that’s jumped more than four-fold since early 2009.

Vial Accusations

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes has diligently cultivated the medical diagnostic company over the past 12 years and is just now hitting the mainstream of her target market. However, both she and the company face stiff challenges.

Vial Accusations

J. Vincent Eagan, JD, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Elizabeth Holmes, founder of blood test pioneer Theranos, faces challenges to the credibility of her firm. Theranos products offer the potential of radically reducing the cost of medical diagnostics and have attracted a top-tier corporate board.

Yuletemps

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Amazon’s boom year means a swell in temporary workers, which cuts into profit -- though not as much as putting them on staff would. The weekly price of Amazon’s holiday help is $70.4 millon.

A Big Bike Maker Steers Uptown

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Taiwanese bike maker Giant Manufacturing's U.S. sales grew 13.8 percent in the first half of 2015, as it pushed higher-end products. The firm is looking to aggressively expand its market presence in the U.S.

Dow Chemical is Turning Sewage Into a Refreshing Drink

Thomas Coe  |  Consumer Goods & Services

For decades, sewage has been treated and used for irrigating crops, parks, and golf courses, but making it fit for human consumption requires advanced filtration technology. Dow Chemical’s process helps tackle drought and beyond -- and comes up smelling like roses.

Making Ethical Chic

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Everlane’s approach to business has been characterized as more "missionary" than "mercenary." The online retailer sells fashionable shoes, clothing, and accessories, but also discloses details about the factory where each item is made and the costs of production.

Profiting From Poor Africans

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

M-Kopa, a Kenyan company in the solar power business, plans to be a $1 billion firm by selling solar panels to rural residents -- and providing them with credit. M-Kopa's typical customer lives on less than $2 per day, but is willing to purchase a $200 power system in order to save money on kerosene and electricity.

Apps That Fight Your Parking Tickets

Eric Cardella  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Using discount legal advice or algorithms, several new apps have helped beat thousands of parking tickets. These new discount legal service apps are sure to change the landscape of the $25 billion legal service market for years to come.

Surveillance in Aisle 4

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Walmart has a long and consistent history of opposing unionization of its workforce. The company carefully monitors activities of workers that may be trying to convince coworkers to join a union and provides extensive training to help managers understand legal limitations regarding federal employment regulations. In the past several years there have been a number of protests and partial strikes on Black Friday at some Walmart stores, but the company has used public relations and labor relations teams to effectively minimize disruptions.

SoftBank's $3 Billion Startup Incubator

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Masayoshi Son, Chief Executive Officer of SoftBank, hired Nikesh Arora from Google to help the company invest $3 billion per year in promising startups with high end potential. Unlike most pools like this, they are not using a shotgun approach with the money, rather they are going to focus huge amounts of cash on around 10 startups. This Bloomberg Businessweek article gives personal insight into Arora and his frame of mind as well as his philosophies on risk.

Startups Give Airbnb Hosts a Helping Hand

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Airbnb has caused a stir similar to Uber as the company uses technology to bring small businesses into markets formerly the domain of larger, entrenched competitors. However, it's also prompting the creation of service providers unique to its industry.

Hey Mom, Set Another Place at Dinner for Fido

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The pet foodie movement is surging. Premium pet food now accounts for more than half of the $23.7 billion market, and new entrants with innovative products are taking a big chunk.

Carnival Rocks the Boat

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Carnival’s CEO, Arnold Donald, has replaced seven of the company’s nine cruise line heads, and given them a charge to think outside the box to reach new customers. Donald believes that a diverse group of people working together can outperform a more homogenous group 90 percent of the time. His new cruise line heads reflect this philosophy. In an industry that is male-dominated and white, four of Donald’s new cruise line heads are women, one is black, one is gay, and some have no experience in the industry.

Faux-Rock Stars

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Entrepreneurial businesses are sometimes like trying to climb a rock wall, but in this case the business IS creating and manufacturing the rock walls.

Hey Mom, Set Another Place at Dinner for Fido

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The “eat-like-your-owner” strategy appears to be paying off for entrepreneurial high-end pet food manufacturers. Sales of premium dog food have surged 45 percent to $10.5 billion in the U.S. since 2009 and now account for more than half of the market. But is this a sustainable marketing strategy?

Slapping a 'Natural' Label on Everything

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Brands are using a variety of labels to appeal to customers’ interests in wholesome foods. By labeling food products as "natural" or "authentic," companies may be responding to customer demands, but it is unclear what these claims mean. Loose regulations allow companies to label many food products in ways that are potentially misleading.

The Netflix Effect is Spreading

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Internet video economics will increasingly favor original, higher-value productions. Call it the "Netflix effect."

Microsoft Wants to be Loved

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Microsoft has made a push to engender fuzzier feelings -- and it's working. Since 2013, Microsoft has risen from seventh place to third in WPP's annual consumer survey on brands, now ranking just behind Apple and Google.

Slapping a 'Natural' Label on Everything

Eric Cardella  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As consumers demand food that is less processed and more natural, food companies race to revamp their products and tout them on the label as being "natural" and "authentic." Are these claims legitimate or just a marketing ploy to increase sales?

Slapping a ‘Natural’ Label On Everything

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As companies reformulate products and label them to evoke a sense of natural authenticity, terms such as “local,” “humanely raised,” and “authentic” are largely left to the interpretation of food marketers. The conclusion is that consumers are left to figure it out for themselves. But do we know what we are eating?

China's Slowdown Won't Deter Apple

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

China has been Apple's manufacturing base and sales growth engine for the past several years. Although growth in Chinese sales of all smartphones is slowing, Apple has seen its third-quarter sales double from 2014 to 2015. While such a high growth rate may not be sustainable, Apple will continue to view the Chinese market as an increasingly important source of revenue.

Hang $99.99

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A Taiwanese manufacturer and a Canadian toy executive joined forces to make a low-price surfboard that’s a best-seller in the U.S.

A Cheaper Way to Send Money Home

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

There now exist dozens of startups running websites and apps that promise cheaper, easier ways to transfer money abroad. These digital remittance startups undercut banks and couriers; online remitters charge about 1 percent, compared with an average of 8 percent for traditional services.

Beefed Up

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

According to drug manufacturer Elanco, the world’s growing demand for meat, milk, and eggs is a more urgent priority than American consumers’ desire for food that is organic, antibiotic free, or pasture-raised. Elanco's answer is the use of antibiotics and growth hormones to increase food production. But is it safe?

Hang $99.99

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Wavestorm surfboards, which launched in 2007 and are sold for $99.99 exclusively through Costco, are now the leading surfboard brand, selling five times more than the closest competitor.

Fantasy Sports Meets Its Match: Lawyers

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Fantasy sports sites claim that they're not gambling sites, but states are moving to regulate them like casinos. The most recent round of investigations follows allegations of cheating at two of the leading sites, DraftKings and FanDuel. Who will win this game?

Bonnie's Army: Can Halo 5 Save the Xbox?

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Microsoft tries to salvage respect in an environment that doesn't tremble at the company's name and might. While unarguably a key player in the gaming industry, it has most certainly not taken the dominant position in the game console market that it has in the computer software realm. Microsoft is banking on its new Halo release to at least maintain its stake and maybe further it in the near future.

Why Roku Isn’t Going After Gamers

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Roku is not for gamers. CEO Anthony Wood believes that Xbox and Playstation consoles will continue to win over the gaming elite, Apple has too much power and presence in the mobile area, and Roku is choosing to stay clear. Is it a wise strategy?

In Brazil, Getting It There is No Fun at All

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Keeping production cost low is important for any firm, but inbound and outbound logistics within the linked value chain have powerful impacts as well. Infrastructural components can create advantages and disadvantages in the global market.

Korean Skincare Secrets

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Skin care in South Korea is big business, with skin-care rituals sometimes taking an hour a day. Products made from natural ingredients such as snail mucus (slime), donkey's milk, and bee venom have had a place in skin care for centuries. Now Korean firms are seeking to take advantage of the export potential, as well as setting up retail outlets overseas.

Smartphone Margins

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Apple claims 90 percent of the smartphone industry’s profits. Although other firms offer very competitive phones, so far they seem to be eroding one another's positions -- not Apple's.

Cloud Computing Finally Gets Some Startups

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Cloud services, an industry developed by IT giants for IT giants, is finally seeing a few startups enter its realm. The startups have managed to underbid the giants in certain markets by keeping expenses relatively low.

Smartphone Margins

Eric Cardella  |  Consumer Goods & Services

In the ultra-competitive smartphone manufacturing market, Apple gobbles up close to 90 percent of industry profits, while Samsung takes the majority of the rest. So why do the other manufacturers continue to compete?

Smartphone Margins

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Apple’s utter dominance of the money-making end of the smartphone industry leaves many Android makers scrambling to create less expensive phones. Are the margins for these low-cost smartphones sufficient to support this strategy?

Long Live the King

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Burger King is relying more heavily on data to make sure its marketing is cost-effective as it reaches customers through digital and social media. Franchisees say the resulting buzz has translated into higher restaurant sales, and the company is doing it for about one fourth of what McDonald’s spends on advertising.

No Place for Old Waiters at Texas Roadhouse?

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Texas Roadhouse is fighting an EEOC suit that alleges the company discriminates based on age when hiring waiters, waitresses, and other front-of-house restaurant workers. The company notes that its servers must wear jeans, work nights and weekends, and line dance during their shifts. Any observed adverse impact on older workers is related to these job requirements, it argues, so its hiring practices are lawful. The case will test a common defense that businesses need younger employees to attract customers and project their brands’ images, as well as address the underlying question of whether prohibitions against age discrimination apply to all companies, regardless of the youthfulness of their brands.

How Much of Your Audience Is Fake?

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How do you know real people are viewing your online ads? An increasing number of digital ad viewers are not human; they're ad bots. These bots are skewing data and the results that online advertisers report. Some consider it nothing less than advertising fraud.

Farm to Face

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Mutant flowers sounds like a great start to a horror flick, but in this case it may well turn into a business bonanza for the founder of Farmacy.

In Africa, New Winners and Losers

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

While it is common to think of Africa as a continent poised for growth, the situation differs across many of its fifty-five countries. The falling price of oil has meant that oil-exporting countries (e.g., Nigeria, Ghana, Angola) are seeing much lower revenues. Meanwhile, countries that depended on minerals and other commodity sales to China have also seen growth slow. But both the Democratic Republic of Congo and Ethiopia are expected to have more than 8 percent GDP growth this year. As a result, there are still good investment opportunities in Africa, depending on the country and the sector of the economy.

Uber by Way of the Kibbutz

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

New Israeli ride-hailing service La’Zooz is a cooperative that relies on volunteers for coding. Riders pay with bitcoin-like tokens that can be earned by giving rides or working on the app. A bitcoin developer says La’Zooz has the potential to “eat Uber and Lyft.”

Netflix Wants an Oscar On Its Mantle

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Netflix continues to reshape the movie business and the release of “Beasts of No Nation” gives the company a chance to win its first Academy Award. The goal is clear: to increase its 65 million-plus worldwide subscribers.

Touch Me Harder

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Apple’s design team focuses on how it can make products more intuitive and easy to use. The company does not believe in using focus groups to tell the designers what customers want, but believes the skills and instincts of designers will be able to provide software and hardware that customers will want to use.

A Founder Who Wants to Stay in the Kitchen

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chobani's founder, Hamdi Ulukaya, helped the company bring Greek yogurt to the U.S. market. The company has weathered struggles with meeting production demands and quality control during a period of rapid growth. While some expected Ulukaya to be ousted, he remains CEO. Ulukaya has learned, however, that the company needs an executive with managerial skills that differ from his own.

Stetson’s Cowboy Spirit Lives On

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The once-famous Stetson hat company is struggling. To keep the company relevant, CEO Izumi Kajimoto is no longer relying on cowboy culture. Instead, Stetson is pursuing the hipster market by offering an eclectic, trendy mix of hats.

Eros Would Love to Become India’s Netflix

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

One of Bollywood's biggest studios, Eros, is betting it can win the online streaming race. The idea is to use the Mumbai studio’s bulging catalog of more than 2,000 films and new, exclusive series to build a critical mass of devoted users before Netflix and Amazon plant their flags in the world’s second-most populous country.

Dairy Farmers at the Barricades

Eric Cardella  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Dairy farms around the world are suffering from declining milk prices. A combination of reduced Chinese demand for imported milk and Russia’s ban on EU, American, and Australian milk has left the global market awash with milk. As a result, global dairy prices are falling with no turnaround in sight.

Dairy Farmers at the Barricades

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

High prices for milk last year caused farmers in many countries to invest in increased production.This year, with markets slowing in China and trade tensions with Russia, global trade in dairy products is down. Hence, dairy farmers worldwide are in a tough financial bind.

Touch Me Harder

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Understanding and maximizing the touch response of an iPhone screen can cost millions (or billions) of dollars, as Apple found out in building 3D Touch.

Hampton Creek Throws Eggs at the FDA

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Hampton Creek’s Josh Tetrick is taking a stand against the FDA. The FDA issued a warning letter listing a number of rule violations related to the company’s Just Mayo product. Among these violations is the company’s use of the term “mayo” in the product’s name and the image of an egg on its label. The FDA asserts this is a violation if its standard-of-identity rules and can be misleading, since the product is eggless. Tetrick ‘s defiant stance stems from more than financial incentives; it is rooted in the company’s commitment to make the global food system more sustainable by developing plant-based substitutes for animal proteins. Thus, the regulatory dispute has issues of principle and may have implications for the evolution of the food industry.

Portuguese Shoemakers Get Fancy

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Shoemaking companies in Portugal are performing well financially as they move up-market. While they can not compete on price with Asian manufacturers, they can compete on quality and have found a profitable market position between high-end Italian shoes and lower-priced Asian models. Some have also added their own brands while continuing to operate as contract manufacturers for more famous labels.

Where the Internet Revolution Is Waiting to Happen

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Forget about streaming video or downloading or uploading large files if you live in Cuba. With fewer than 4 percent of homes having access to the Internet, Cuba has some of the worst Internet access in the world. How does Castro’s government respond to the market demand for better Internet access and control access to information?

Can Netflix Become Must-See TV in Japan?

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Netflix continues to see a growth in revenues, with strong sales in the United States, Canada, Australia, United Kingdom, and Brazil. Now the company has its sights set on Asian markets as it rolls out its service in Japan. This, however, will bring new challenges, as Japanese consumers are not used to paying for programming.

Can Netflix Become Must-See TV in Japan?

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Netflix has been a Western phenomenon. Betting that streaming will become a global phenomenon, Netflix will expand to more than 150 countries by the end of 2016.

Britain's Digital-Health Startups Seek First Aid

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Regardless of where innovation is generated, it will seek its highest potential returns wherever they may exist across the globe. Due to revenue constraints, British healthcare innovators are beginning to seek and find funding (as well as markets) in the United States before looking at home.

Things Are About to Get Ugly at Kraft

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

3G Capital and Warren Buffett are focused on cost-cutting and operational efficiency to boost profits at moribund Kraft. But analysts are concerned about the long-term value of the firm's brands in the evolving packaged-foods industry.

A Breakout Year for Cuban Entrepreneurs

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Is Cuba now a capitalist or socialist society? Although 201 categories of work are now open to entrepreneurs in the country, the state still dominates the economy.

Things Are About to Get Ugly at Kraft

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Warren Buffett and 3G Capital have made one big promise: They’ll cut $1.5 billion in annual costs from Kraft Heinz before 2018. The company will lose employees, whole levels of management, and maybe a few brands, too. Will it be a boon to investors?

Insurance For the Agent-Averse

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The comparison-shopping website PolicyGenius sells policies from 26 insurers. More than half of its customers are millennials who prefer to shop online and believe that the insurance industry is out of step with the times.

Greece Gets Something Right!

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Greece trails Spain and Italy in olive oil production, but is poised for a good year in 2015. A drought in Spain has led to a large drop in production, and bad weather, fruit flies, and a disease have all contributed to a decrease in Italian output.

Skechers' Lesson From a Fad That Flopped

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Overproduction combined with an FTC investigation caused Skechers’ Shape-ups shoes to go from fad to fiasco. But the company rebounded. Skechers’ valuation has risen from $600 million at the end of 2011 to about $8 billion today.

Cleaning Up Drug Lane

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Unregulated supply chains and poor record keeping make it easy for counterfeit drugs to find their way into stores in many developing countries. MPedigree, a Ghana-based company, works with manufacturers to place scratch-off security codes on drug boxes to help consumers find out if the product is legitimate.

Priority Mail

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Claiming the largest share of Amazon’s business and looking to grow, the United States Postal Service has become a formidable competitor to FedEx and UPS. But that all depends on continued government support.

Cleaning Up Drug Lane

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Counterfeit drugs are a critical issue in many developing countries, as unregulated supply chains and poor record keeping make it easy for bootleggers to slip fake products into supply chains. The results can be life-threatening for customers who rely on the efficacy of drugs.

When Cars Don’t Have Drivers, Who Needs Insurance?

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Insurers brace for a time when automation reduces accidents -- and premiums. Insurers collected $195 billion in auto premiums from U.S. drivers last year. By 2030, consumers could pay 60 percent less.

The New Old Windows

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Microsoft tries to win fans and improve its bottom line with a Windows operating system redo and ventures into non-OS products and services.

Networks Outsource Their Networking

Eric Cardella  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As the demand for streaming media content grows, television companies are moving quickly to develop online streaming platforms. The urgency to build these platforms has forced most television companies to outsource streaming-service development.

The Smartphone Shields Are Down

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Growth in China’s market of 400 million smartphone users has almost flattened, leaving manufacturers scrambling.The decline is particularly bad news for Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi, which has been dependent upon the rapidly growing domestic market.

Stores Try Fixed Prices That Aren’t So Fixed

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Digital shelf displays continue to blur the lines between shopping online and in a store as retailers embrace both “bricks and clicks” to compete with Amazon and online retailers. As Amazon continues to grow, will this technology provide a competitive edge for brick-and-mortar stores?

Big Data: Searching for Drug Side Effects

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Millions of people search online for information about symptoms and prescription drugs. Patterns in their searches might reveal previously unknown side effects of medications.

Stores Try Fixed Prices That Aren’t So Fixed

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Digital price displays are giving brick-and-mortar retailers a weapon against online rivals like Amazon. However, going digital isn't cheap.

Innovation: Child Prostheses

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

E-Nable designs 3D-printed prostheses for children older than 3 and shares its blueprints so they can be made for as little as $30. This way, the prostheses can be easily replaced as the kids outgrow them.

The Smartphone Shields Are Down

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The large smartphone companies have done well in recent years, with rising sales and profits. Part of the reason for their success is the growing market for smartphones in China. However, the smartphone market in China may be reaching saturation, with most consumers who want and can afford a smartphone already owning one.

A Chinese Lender Bets on East Coast Golf

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

South Carolina's Grand Strand is dotted with golf courses, condos, and resorts. After some recent acquisitions, China-based Yiqian Funding now owns 22 of the golf courses and is adding to its real estate holdings. Yiqian's goals include increasing the number of Chinese tourists, and potential condo owners, to the area.

Will Stream 4 Cash

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Rather than sell ads, YouNow, a live-streaming app, has shunned them to create its own strange, tip-based economy. Can it be profitable?

Rethinking Disneyland for the Chinese Family

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Disney is applying what it learned from the problems it had establishing a park France as it develops the $5.5 billion Shanghai Disneyland. The goal is to build something that is authentically Disney and distinctly Chinese. The demographics are quite different, and adult visitors may outnumber kids four to one. Will Disney’s largest foreign investment to date pay off?

A Different Kind of Ride-Sharing

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As legislators in various markets come to grips with the lost revenue within the taxi service sector due to Uber and Lyfts, the business model is now shifting to avoid these issues and it is not being accomplished by the incumbent firms, but by other startups. One major player is Bla-Bla Car, which uses a ride-sharing model versus a ride-for-hire model.

Planting Seeds Against The Cuban Embargo

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The farm lobby in Washington proved successful in getting legislation passed in 2000 that allowed agricultural exports to Cuba. Under the guise of humanitarian goals, agricultural companies could ship goods (primarily grain) to Cuba as long as no government financing was used. With the potential for more open trade between the United States and Cuba, the lobbying efforts have increased, although not everyone is pushing for open trade in agriculture between the countries.

Macrobrewery: Can Craft Beer Survive AB InBev?

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Is AB InBev acquiring craft brewers to strengthen the segment or put them out of business?

Die Grundertrainerin Will See You Now

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

You have to be crazy to begin a startup. Can I be your therapist?

What Is Code?

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

It's all about the base. Or is it?

Startups See Dollars in China's Young and Lonely

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Seeking romance and love in modern day China. There has to be an app for that. Or two or three.

A Bay Area Startup Spins Lab-Grown Silk

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Bolt Threads expects products made with its yeast cell-based silk to be available in 2016.

Some Falafel Shops Go Better With Coca-Cola

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Coke offers small restaurants in Germany access to an app that will facilitate online ordering of food and beverages.

Big Pharma and Insurers Play Nice

Eric Cardella  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As pharmaceutical drugs become exorbitantly expensive, biotechs are forced to work with insurers on pricing and coverage.

Porsche's Buyers in China are Downshifting

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Porsche is expecting China to become its largest market this year, but customers are starting to choose slightly cheaper models.

A Chinese Phone Aimed at Hipsters

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

New startup OnePlus' business relies on word of mouth abroad.

The $5 Billion Sublet

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Is WeWork a real estate company with a tech-bubble valuation, or a brilliant new office space?

Brainless ATMs Are the Way of the Future

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Fewer than 20 percent of large banks worldwide are connecting their ATMs to the cloud.

China Does an About-Face on GMOs

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

To cut back on imports and boost domestic agricultural productivity, China is opening up to more GMOs.

Nestle's Peace Offering in California's Water War

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Nestle takes steps to reduce water usage at its factories while facing criticism for selling bottled water.

Minding the Family Store for the Next Generation

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A century-old retail business lays the groundwork for succession.

Whole Foods or Walmart?

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Sales growth at established Whole Foods stores has slowed to 3.6 percent, far below the pace of organics overall. Who is eating their organic lunch?

Marijuana Tracking Goes Corporate

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The cost of legal sales of marijuana—does it sometimes leave opportunity for illegal entrepreneurs?

Lessons From China's Counterfeit Crackdown

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chinese online retailers take steps to curb the sales of counterfeit goods on their websites.

Rivals Are Gaining On YouTube

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

YouTube holds the lead in the $7.8 billion U.S. market for online video ads, but the chase is on. Multiple rivals are attempting to steal market share from the online video giant. Will the giant fall?

A Home Shortage Amid Hawaii’s Building Boom

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Developers on Oahu try to balance opportunities to offer tourists high-priced condos with the need for affordable housing for locals.

Small Business Finds Its Voice in Free Trade

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Is creating opportunities for a few individual small businesses at the same time we create huge benefits to large businesses overseas a solid strategy for entrepreneurial proponents?

On the Java Sea, a New Shenzhen is Born

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As labor costs rise in China, Indonesia tries to attract manufacturers.

How Your T-Shirt Can Make You Rich

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Three-year-old Teespring sold 7 million shirts in 2014, largely on the strength of social media microtargeting.

P&G Stops Making Sense

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Will major reductions in Procter & Gamble's product line make it more competitive?

Innovation: Pentagrom Screen

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Learning guitar is easy when you can see the music.

Japan's Amazon Has Bigger Dreams

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Japan’s dominant e-commerce company, Rakuten, is trying to become a global competitor through acquisitions.

Japan's Amazon has Bigger Dreams

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Having gained a strong position in Japan, Rakuten is making acquisitions internationally to spur growth.

Drone Makers Seek Traffic Control

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

NASA-backed software could orchestrate urban skies.

The Secret Sauce

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With $1.5 billion in annual revenue, Buffalo Wild Wings is breaking records in the casual-dining category.

U.S. Consumers Will Open Their Wallets Soon Enough

Brian Kench, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Don’t worry, Americans aren’t becoming obsessive savers. Count on them to spend.

Airbnb Drops in on Cuba

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Airbnb works to overcome hurdles to open the Cuban rental market.

A Virtual Garage Sale Takes on Craigslist

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Startup VarageSale competes with Craigslist by focusing on mobile and has raised $34 million in venture funding.

The U.S. Pushes Thailand to Clean Up Tuna Inc.

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The U.S. State Department and multinational retailers are taking steps to address human trafficking and poor working conditions in Thai factories.

Japanese Engineers Reinvent the Wheel

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Two inventors found it easier to build $7,900 bike wheels than to sell them.

Coke's Unlikely Savior

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Coke and Pepsi may be allies in the latest battle to win back consumers.

The U.S. Pushes Thailand to Clean Up Tuna Inc.

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Human trafficking and migrant laborers have cast a shadow on Thailand's tuna industry.

Coke’s Unlikely Savior

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

U.S. cola consumption is falling by about 4 percent a year. Soda makers are seeking new sweeteners to reverse the trend.

Unforbidden Fruit

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Singapore’s palm oil king is leading the push to stop deforestation and adopt sustainable practices.

Unforbidden Fruit

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

After fortunes have been made, the push to stop deforestation in the palm oil industry has moved other big companies to follow suit. Is this a legitimate campaign or a sustainability stunt?

For Apple, Only Time Will Tell In China

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

China may prove to the big market for Apple's most expensive watches.

Paying by the Second, Instead of the Click

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

You can resume your game after the advertisement is complete.

Making Washington Fall in Love With Pizza Again

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The $37 billion pizza industry wants Congress to roll back regulations designed to get Americans to eat fewer slices.

One Hot List You Don't Want to Be On

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The U.S. Trade Representative's "notorious markets" list uses a name-and-shame approach to address intellectual property theft.

Now Hear This

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

New audio technology manufacturers are trying to break into the $6 billion hearing-aid market.

Innovation: Crash-Proof Drone

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A new specially designed drone can safely bounce off obstacles and people without damage or injury.

Meet Death, Buy His Raincoat

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Despite the brand's melancholy theme, the founder of Stutterheim’s trendy raincoats has nothing to be depressed about.

One Hot List You Don't Want to Be On

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A U.S. government report names names in the business of fakes.

Meet Death, Buy His Raincoat

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Celebrating a melancholy mood helps Stutterheim sell high-priced Swedish raincoats.

Intel Buys Its Way Deeper Into China

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Intel is spending billions in China in an effort to catch up with dominant mobile chipmaker Qualcomm.

The Tech Tastemaker You Can Game

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

User-ranked listings site Product Hunt attracts venture capitalists.

How Kellogg Lost Breakfast

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The American breakfast experience has changed, and Kellogg is in trouble.

The Cat Content Wars

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

It's a dog-eat-dog world in publishing, but that's not a bad thing for this company.

The Clutter in Kip Tindell

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can the Container Store maintain its commitment to conscious capitalism and keep shareholders happy, too?

Pizza Hut Wants to Roll Its Dough in Africa

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

In Africa, Pizza Hut can't be the cheapest or the first pizza chain, so it wants to be the best.

Will Etsy Come Undone By Success?

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Pressure from stockholders may change the character of craft website Etsy after its upcoming IPO.

It's Raining Cars in China

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The booming market for autos in China has caused automakers to expand capacity faster than the demand warrants.

Innovation: Power Fingerprinting

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Two academics have created a security system that is practically impossible to evade.

Finally, Good News for Workers at the Bottom

Brian Kench, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The economy has been growing fast enough and long enough for employers to hire overlooked workers.

Who Doesn’t Love a Discount? The Taxman

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Expedia has taken an aggressive position on local hotel taxes and may face a tax bill of $847 million.

Everyone's Playing Dots, Except The Chinese

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Mobile phone gamers worldwide play Dots and TwoDots, but the company has had difficulty cracking the world's biggest mobile gaming market: China.

Small to Big: I Do Now I Don't

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

All is not lost. That engagement ring is still worth something.

Cambodia's Wages Rise, Orders Don't

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Rising wages in Cambodia cause multinationals to look elsewhere for cheap labor.

Need Some Shut-Eye? Try a Spritz of Melatonin

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Startup Sprayable seeks to take customers from wide awake to deep sleep.

Whole Foods, Half Off

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Whole Foods, unaffectionately known as "Whole Paycheck," had a lousy 2014. The elite grocer says it is ready to compete like a big-box chain.

Whole Foods, Half Off

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How is Whole Foods planning to maintain its profitability in the face of increasing competition?

Whole Foods, Half Off

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Whole Foods is responding to competition with moves that mirror the competition's tactics, such as cutting prices.

Innovation: Health-Monitoring Tattoo

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

An engineer has created a temporary tattoo that can monitor your blood sugar without needles.

Why Brands Love China's Sex And The City

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Western brands vie for product placement on China's hit shows, and often don't even have to pay for the publicity.

Why Brands Love China’s Sex And The City

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The Tiny Times movies have pulled in $208 million at the box office, making them attractive for promoting luxury brands to an affluent and young Chinese market.

Charlie Rose Talks to Stella McCartney

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How much does genealogy matter in entrepreneurial endeavors?

Why Target is Raking Up Its Maple Leaves

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Target has admitted failure and is pulling back from its first international expansion into Canada.

Holding on to Relevance

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Abercrombie & Fitch sales have fallen in five of the past seven years. Can this $4 billion retailer survive, or has it lost its shirt?

Why Target is Raking Up Its Maple Leaves

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Target is cutting its losses and exiting the Canadian market.

Coffee, Mate

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Starbucks' flat white is being introduced in the U.S. after successful runs in Australia and Britain.

Xiaomi Puts a Windfall to Work Beyond Phones

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Xiaomi, which raised $1.1 billion in December, is pouring money into its own investments.

Felon or Mark?

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

An outspoken advocate of ethics and fighting corruption is now facing trial for bribery. Is Joe Sigelman guilty or a scapegoat?

Forget Everything You Didn't Understand About Bitcoin

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With transactions staying below $55,000 a day, companies are looking at Bitcoin as a money transfer technology.

Hardware: Apple Sneaks Up on Cheaper PCs

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Despite a significant drop in worldwide PC shipments over the last year, Apple is gaining in the category.

Playing Chicken in the Burger Wars

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With beef prices soaring, cheap chicken nuggets are the latest weapon.

Wipe Off That Smile

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Members-only online discount retailer, Jet.com, will launch this January and compete on price with industry giants Amazon and eBay.

007’s Next Mission: Saving Aston Martin

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Aston Martin’s annual sales fell by 45 percent to only 3,600 cars sold annually between 2007 and 2012. The company is now looking to James Bond to save its legendary brand. Can 007 do it?

A Retirement Toast

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The wage gap is just the start. A combination of the demise of traditional pensions for rank-and-file employees and lucrative deferred compensation plans for executives is making an even larger retirement savings gap.

Innovation: All-in-One Earbuds

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

If you can't have everything between your ears, you can at least have it all in your ear.

Amazon Sorts Itself Out for the Holidays

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

New facilities are supposed to prevent delivery disappointments.

Opening Remarks: Cuba Isn't Libre Yet

J. Vincent Eagan, JD, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Major obstacles remain despite President Obama reducing travel, trade, and banking restrictions with Cuba.

Juts Do It

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Fraudbusters are cracking down on fake goods in China.

Amazon Sorts Itself Out for the Holidays

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Amazon has almost doubled the number of its sorting centers to avoid hiccups in holiday deliveries.

The World's Biggest Car Company Wants to Get Rid of Gasoline

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Will electric vehicles become a thing of the past? Toyota has a vision that its hydrogen vehicle will become the first mass-market hydrogen car.

Zara Follows Shoppers Into the Bedroom

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Zara Home is helping propel growth at the world's largest retailer.

Time to Make the Nutella-Filled Doughnuts

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As Dunkin' Donuts expands internationally, it localizes its product offerings.

Man Buys Phone, Gets a Brick

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Websites, warehouses, and shipping companies in India can't keep up with e-commerce demand.

An Expense App To Hook Road Warriors

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Travel expenses made easy and hopefully cheaper.

Starbucks: Howard Schultz on the Coffee Chain's Expansion Under His Leadership

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Howard Schultz had to create a coffee culture in the United States in order for his company to thrive.

Twenty Years of Techron Yield Unclear Results

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chevron continues to spend large sums on R&D and the marketing of its fuel additive Techron although the competition has similar additives and consumers are more focused on price.

The End of the Coffee Line

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The restaurant industry grew less than 4 percent in 2013 and needs a boost. Can mobile order-ahead apps help to increase traffic and sales?

Ordinary Russians Suffer Ruble Shock

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The declining value of the Russian ruble is making imports more expensive, thus impacting consumer spending and importers' business.

Merchants Try to Trim Many Unhappy Returns

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Holiday return rates are three times the usual, costing sellers billions of dollars.

In India, Amazon and Its Rivals Tread Lightly

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Merchants say e-commerce companies in India, flush with foreign capital, are violating rules meant to protect locals.

Uber Alles

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Uber is using its $17 billion valuation to raise capital and finance rapid growth internationally.

Plastic That Carries a Big Charge

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

An engineer has developed a 3D-printing plastic he claims can be used to print electronics.

Makeup For Cool Girls

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Entering the makeup market from the blogosphere.

In India, Amazon and Its Rivals Tread Lightly

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Amazon and local e-commerce firms in India try to work around rules designed to protect small shopkeepers from foreign-backed retailers.

Merchants Try to Trim Many Unhappy Returns

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Returns cost retailers up to an estimated $20 billion a year and merchants are turning to technology to bolster holiday profits.

Bangladesh’s Toxic Tanneries

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Bangladesh exports leather, but the environmental and health costs remain local.

Bangladesh's Toxic Tanneries

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Bangladesh's $1 billion leather export industry is hazardous for workers.

Kiss Your Cords Goodbye

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Keyssa is trying to bring a new level of wireless transfer speed to consumer phones, laptops, and home appliances.

Wal-Mart's Organic Surge

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Wal-Mart and Wild Oats plan to lower the price of organic food and bring it to the masses.

Expert Outlook: Kevin Plank

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A great innovative company doesn't rely on its early success for extension; it leans on its brand reputation.

India vs. China

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

India is becoming increasingly attractive to manufacturers, although it is still in need of infrastructure improvements.

Wal-Mart’s Organic Surge

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Organic sales are up, and Wal-Mart is expanding its selection of organic foods with the promise to sell them at the same price as nonorganic food. How can Wal-Mart still make its margins?

The Extremely Metered Paywall

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Is there hope for the struggling newspaper industry? Article-selling startup Blendle reports 129,000 users in six months with growth expectations ahead.

Salmon Farmers Hail the "Supercycle"

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Worldwide demand for salmon is growing faster than it can be produced in Chile, Norway, Canada, and the United States.

Apple Enters the Mobile Pay Fray With a Running Start

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Registers across America will soon accept Apple Pay. The next trick will be getting people to use it.

Can the Internet Change the Way Women Buy Bras?

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Six startups are competing to sell women a better bra.

Laundry Detergent Makers Want More Suds

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

U.S. laundry detergent sales fell 6.4 percent from 2009 to 2013 and are expected to keep falling through 2018.

Laundry Detergent Makers Want More Suds

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Growth-oriented Proctor & Gamble must deal with a shrinking market for laundry detergent driven by efficiency and water conservation.

Samsung's China Problems Come to India

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Once the market leader in both China and India, Samsung phones are losing marketshare to cheaper models.

Samsung’s China Problems Come to India

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Cheaper smartphones eat away at the South Korean company's lead.

Home-Cooked Meals From The Cloud

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Mobile food startups are moving beyond delivery into food prep.

Datsun's Second Life Isn't So Good, After All

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Resurrected in emerging markets, Datsun's cars are viewed as too cheap.

Green Buzz

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Does coffee have a new competitor?

Why the Strong Dollar is Messing Things Up

Brian Kench, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The strength of the U.S. dollar is a burden for developing countries dependent on imported commodities.

RumChata, a liqueur that tastes like cinnamon cereal, is an unlikely hit

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Most cream liqueurs draw female customers, but 47 percent of RumChata drinkers are men.

Bitcoin: Not Just for Libertarians and Anarchists Anymore

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

More and more people are using Bitcoin for common transactions.

Innovation: Early cancer detection

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A simple blood test may screen for a wide variety of cancers at extremely early stages.

Marchionne’s Last Lap

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Fiat CEO Marchionne says his expanded company will boost sales 60 percent by 2018. Analysts are doubtful.

Just Relax

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Thync will soon launch a device to relax or energize you via small jolts of electricity to your brain.

Intel Inside

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Intel wants to make sure it's part of the “Next Big Thing,” which may be the “Internet of Things.”

Adidas's World Cup Win Only Goes So Far

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Adidas's sales in the United States are down 14 percent this year due to weak sales in basketball and golf.

Can Renault Keep Dacia Cheap?

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Low cost auto factories in Eastern Europe create a jobs and export engine for the region.

A Bezos-Backed Startup May Go Up Against Amazon

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Jeff Bezos helped give Pro.com its start, and he may be positioning Amazon to compete with it.

Back by Popular Demand … Surge Soda

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The power of a dedicated fan leveraging the power of social media pushed Coke to re-introduce Surge.

This Activist Is No Babe in the Woods

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Vani Hari's Foodbabe.com has helped motivate Subway and other companies to change their ingredients, but there may not be much science behind the Web activist's campaigns.

Drizly Lets You Point, Click, and Drink

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Drizly has an interesting business model to offer alcohol sales and delivery online.

Drizly Lets You Point, Click, and Drink

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Bring me another bottle of vodka. I live at ______________.

Is Your Local Craft Beer From Out of State?

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Are you buying your craft beer from a local source? You may be surprised. Brew Hub plans a five-brewery network that craft brands can use to grow the business far, far away from home.

Netflix Looks to the Old World for New Growth

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

After success in Scandinavia and Britain, Netflix sets its sights on Germany and France.

This Apple Was Once Headed To Russia: Not Anymore

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As a result of the conflict in Ukraine, exports of many agricultural products from the EU to Russia have stopped, which is good news for EU consumers, bad news for EU farmers.

Briefs: No (More) Smoking

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

CVS Caremark has kicked its tobacco habit, and hopes its customers can too.

Made in Memphis

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Rising transportation costs and wage rates in China are causing firms to relocate manufacturing to the Southeast U.S.

Have We Reached Peak Burger?

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Current trends leave the future of legacy burger-and-fries chains in question.

Saving an Endangered Fish by Eating More of It

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can Whole Foods help save an endangered Amazonian fish by getting U.S. consumers to eat more of it?

Saving an Endangered Fish by Eating More of It

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Greater demand for paiche could attract commercial fish farmers.

Why Apple’s iBeacon Hasn’t Taken Off—Yet

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Apple’s year-old indoor-tracking technology hasn't broken out from its pack of rivals.

The Ninja Turtles Save Summer

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Hollywood is suffering from overcrowding during its key season.

Shhh … Luxury Goods Are Discounted in China

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chinese consumers buy a third of all luxury goods globally. A crackdown on gift-giving has slowed such sales.

Porsche for Her

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The Macan is Porsche’s newest product. Is the smaller SUV going to taint the brand or replicate the success of the Cayenne for the legacy automaker?

As Canadian as Huawei?

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Huawei is finding growth opportunities in Canada that it wasn't finding in the United States.

Ben & Jerry's GMO Food Fight

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Ben & Jerry's advocacy for GMO labeling puts it at odds with its parent corporation.

The Chinese TV Maker Taking Aim at Sony

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Hisense is moving up in worldwide market share of television sets and is challenging Sony for the #3 position.

Innovation: Hair Helmet

Craig A. Turner, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A former research engineer at NASA has created a plastic helmet that can limit hair loss using laser technology.

Xiaomi Takes Direct Aim at the iPhone

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Xiaomi's smartphones emphasize technology over marketing, and are making inroads in Asian markets.

First-World Dog Problems

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Purina claims that Blue Buffalo's image and its business are "built on lies."

Turning Ethiopia Into China's China

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Labor costs in Ethiopia are approximately 10 percent of those in China, causing some Chinese companies to shift production to Africa.

Jeff Bewkes’s Disappearing Act

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Investors have cheered as Jeff Bewkes systematically dismembered Time Warner and raised the value of its stock. But at what cost?

You Know You Want Him

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How does a first-generation American move into the role of becoming a highly sought after spokesperson and a business-empire builder? Rapper Pitbull does it one partnership at a time.

Pernod Makes a Little Vodka in a Berlin Garage

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Just as some big brewers have found that microbrews have bigger than microprofits, now a multinational spirits company is trying to capitalize on some consumers' preference for locally made vodka.

Flipkart’s Fight to Maintain Its Lead in India

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Despite trade restrictions that bar foreign retailers, Amazon and EBay have entered the Indian market and are about to overtake Flipkart, the Indian market leader.

Crazed Pervert or Misunderstood Genius?

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The ouster of American Apparel's CEO shines a light on the company's uneasy balance of idealistic social responsibility with a variety of transgressions.

Flipkart's Fight to Maintain Its Lead in India

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Delivering in a city with no street address system. Can it be done?

What Are They Doing at Monsanto?

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

What effect does the controversy over GMO seeds have on Monsanto?

Sony Bets It Can Find The Next Big Thing

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Despite mounting losses, Sony is increasing spending on R&D and releasing new products like the SmartBand, which it hopes will be the next big thing.

Sony Bets It Can Find The Next Big Thing

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Sony lost $1.3 billion last year and continues to spend on research and development. Are Sony’s actions a testimony to a long-term vision or a design for short-term collapse?

Inflation’s Up, Spending’s Down

Brian Kench, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

According to one survey, 49 percent of U.S. consumers say they need a raise before they’ll shop more.

Intel’s Big Push for Vietnamese Engineers

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Intel has staffed up its plant in Vietnam by sending local students to Oregon for college-level training.

If Only They Had Listened...

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

GM didn't just ignore whistle-blowers, it shut them up.

Droid Killer?

James Richardson, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Cheap smartphones running Firefox's mobile OS are beginning to spread into emerging markets.

Starbucks, Magna Cum Grande

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Starbucks offers employees tuition support on a grand scale.

Droid Killer?

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Will Firefox be the new OS for our smartphones?

Droid Killer?

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A simple operating system for simple phones has caught the attention of phone makers and network operators in developing markets.

America's Got Milk and China Wants It

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Strong international demand is pushing up global milk prices, creating an opportunity for U.S. dairy farmers.

Will World Cup Sponsors Get Kicked, Too?

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Coca-Cola has invested $4 billion this year on marketing as Brazil’s 2014 World Cup, the biggest soccer party on the planet, is now plagued with protests. What will Coke do if things go as badly, as some predict?

Taco Bell’s Secret Recipe for New Products

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Taco Bell’s new-product team considers up to 4,500 ideas each year. Fewer than a dozen of those products actually make it onto the national menu. Will the Waffle Taco be the next hit?

A New Breed of Power Company

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Will electricity become part of our cable bundles?

Modesty is the New Abercrombie

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Abercrombie is hoping to bring back teens who’ve left the mall and are shopping with their smartphones.

Modesty is the New Abercrombie

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Abercrombie is hoping to bring back teens who’ve left the mall and are shopping with their smartphones.

Modesty is the New Abercrombie

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Abercrombie & Fitch is hoping to bring back teens who are leaving the mall. Is there still time to save the brand?

Can Pinterest Be Found in Translation?

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Pinterest is trying to gain members outside of the U.S., but must adapt to cultural and social differences.

Big-Box Cutter

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How does Stihl help small hardware stores stay in business?

Twitter Wants To Be Your TV

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Consumers, particularly Millennials, do not want to miss out on a conversation. Twitter’s lackluster growth after its initial public offering has been buoyed by ad sales team-ups with TV programmers.

For Bangladeshi Women, Work is Worth the Risks

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Hazardous garment factories provide one of the only ways out of poverty for many Bangladeshi women.

Selling a Brand, Shot by Shot

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A shot in the dark? Fireball Cinnamon Whisky has become one of the most successful liquor brands in decades, with annual sales now exceeding $80 million.

For Bangladeshi Women, Work Is Worth the Risks

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Working in poor conditions in the garment industry has helped raise the living standards of many women in Bangladesh.

Can HTC’s Co-Founder Come to the Rescue?

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

HTC’s chair and co-founder has stepped in to revitalize the company but isn’t advocating for radical changes.

Selling Ethical Fashion to the Whole Foods Set

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Where do your clothes come from? Startup clothing retailers are answering this question and urging customers to pay more and buy less.

Selling Ethical Fashion to the Whole Foods Set

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Last year, more than 1,100 workers died in the collapse of a Bangladeshi clothing factory. A handful of startup online retailers are taking action by selling direct and offering ethically manufactured, higher-quality products.

Aereo's Survival Depends on Semantics

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The Supreme Court's decision about online streaming could cause the end of a company.

Why U.S. Retailers are Still Vulnerable

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

There is a lack of synchronization among retailers, credit card providers, and banks to upgrade their credit and debit card technology to reduce fraud.

Can Dropbox Avoid Getting Lost in the Clouds?

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The popular storage service adds apps to fend off Box, Google, and Apple.

Keeping the Mystery Out of China's Meat

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With 500,000 food production and processing companies, China has become the Wild West of food safety.

Good for Kids, Good for Publishers

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

First Book Marketplace accounted for 2 percent of all juvenile books sold in the United States last year to an unlikely audience at a surprising price. Why is everyone involved winning?

Keeping the Mystery Out of China's Meat

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

While China does have strict food safety rules, it is often up foreign multinational firms to make sure that local suppliers follow the rules.

Good for Kids, Good for Publishers

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Publishers profit when they work with First Book to make deeply discounted books available to children from low-income homes.

Keeping the Mystery Out of China's Meat

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Western companies police the safety of China's food supply.

In the Diaper Wars, Every Pee Point Counts

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

P&G lab churns out 150,000 diaper models a year, including many that won’t come to market for a decade.

Pandora's Stock Rally Isn't Solving Its Problems

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How has Pandora’s slowing sales growth affected its stock price? And will it be able to control royalty expenses?

In the Diaper Wars, Every Pee Point Counts

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Pampers brand is especially important to P&G because it lets the company forge ties with moms, the company's "core customer."

In the Diaper Wars, Every Pee Point Counts

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Procter & Gamble is trying to create a Pampers diaper that has zero leakage, ultimate dryness, and an ideal fit -- and is investing millions to do so.

The Epic Hack

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Target's information security systems worked well and identified malware before customer data was transferred. Nevertheless, Target failed to respond to warnings, violated its customers' trust, and let millions become victims of cyber crime.

The Epic Hack

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Target's security monitors in India noticed the malware on its U.S. servers almost immediately, but the red flags were ignored.

Tracking Colorado's Legal Pot, Plant by Plant

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Pot is legal in Colorado, but only with a tracking device.

Is Google Too Big To Sue?

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Google faces a potential class action suit over Gmail privacy concerns.

Born-in-the-USA Luxury Gains in China

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

China now accounts for more 25 percent of global luxury spending for U.S. brands, and U.S. sales are growing faster in China than pricier European luxury lines.

Born-in-the-USA Luxury Gains in China

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

U.S. brands such as Coach, which sells bags for less than $400, are growing faster in China than pricier European luxe lines.

The LIfe and Times of a Sirlion Steak

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Meatpackers are suing to block a federal rule requiring Country of Origin Labeling on beef sold in the U.S.

French Beret Makers: Then There Was One

Brian Kench, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The last French beret maker expects to make almost 200,000 this year. France used to produce millions.

Your Wilting Retirement

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

According to hundreds of government filings analyzed by Bloomberg, 18 percent of companies have reduced the amount or delayed payment of 401(k) matching funds and dragged out vesting schedules. For many, that could mean the difference between financial security and scarcity in old age.

Cry of the Style Mavens: Pimp My Ikea

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Customizing IKEA furniture for individual and local tastes creates business opportunities.

A Museum Trades Memberships for Data

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

What can you get for free at the Dallas Museum of Art?

A Russian Mogul Takes on Diageo

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A Russian businessman tries to consolidate vodka production.

Asia's Budget Airline Invasion

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As incomes rise among tens of millions of consumers across Asia, so does the number of low-fare airlines competing for their business.

The Arabica Project

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Climate change and other factors are endangering the Arabica coffee bean. Starbucks’ response is to buy a Costa Rican coffee farm and share research on coffee plants and sustainable farming methods.

Colombia Likes Strong Coffee, but a Weak Peso

Brian Kench, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The Andean nation buys dollars, befuddling investors.

Yes, You Can Find a Babysitter Online

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

People will date someone they meet online, but will they hire babysitters they meet online?

Bringing Order to Data Chaos

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Fast-growing data center software companies are expanding their services in search of profitability.

Blockbuster Is Still a Hit - South of the Border

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Having brick-and-mortar stores that rent video games and movies is still a viable business model in Mexico.

Barbarians at the Suit Racks

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

After more than four months of offers, counteroffers, poison pills, and pac-man defenses, Jos. A. Bank has now announced that it is considering acquiring Eddie Bauer to make itself less acquirable by Men’s Wearhouse.

The West Bank Puts Israeli Exports at Risk

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

SodaStream and other companies operating in East Jerusalem and the West Bank are facing boycotts. Do these Israeli companies provide a path to peace or further poverty and the denial of rights?

Google's Giant $1 Patent Victory

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How $1 in damages paid to Google is a win for the company.

No Tax Breaks for Boats

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Should the mortgage-interest deduction for yachts be repealed, and how much in tax revenue will it save if it is?

Lenovo Takes on Apple and Samsung

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Lenovo builds market share in smartphones and purchases Motorola Mobility from Google.

Factory Jobs Are Gone. Get Over It

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Although many people think the return of lost manufacturing jobs is just what the United States needs, most experts would disagree. Across richer countries, growth has been accompanied by a decline in the number of manufacturing jobs and a rise in the number of service jobs.

Amazon and EBay Inch Into India

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Regulations prevent foriegn-backed firms from operating retail facilities in India, but Amazon and EBay have managed to gain a small foothold by providing the "marketplace" for local firms to sell using the American companies' websites and warehouses.

Japan Looks to Sake To Spur Exports

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Seeking to spur exports, Japanese sake producers are starting to treat sake and the selection of rice with an approach similar to fine wineries.

How Imgur Became a Photo-Sharing Hit

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How many photo-sharing sites can consumers tolerate?

The Blogger Hackers Love to Hate

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A former reporter's talent for exposing the weaknesses in online security has earned him respect in the IT business and loathing among cybercriminals.

Can Target Find Its Place in The Big City

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Big-box retailers are encountering new challenges as they downsize stores to accommodate population shifts.

Bitcoin Rush

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Is Bitcoin the future of currency that transcends governments?

Risking Life and Limb To Earn $160 a Month

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

In Cambodia, striking garment workers are risking their lives to seek a higher minimum wage and a "better life."

My Fridge is Smarter Than Yours

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Samsung has captured worldwide market share in appliances, with the goal of being No. 1.

My Fridge is Smarter Than Yours

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Samsung’s goal for your kitchen is simple: It wants to own it by 2015.

Snapchat for the Corner Office

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Shredding is out; self-destruct messages are in.

Superbugs: From Farm to Table?

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The FDA's new rules regulating antibiotic use in farm animals look a lot like the voluntary program at McDonald's. Why are many corporate forces opposed to stronger regulation?

American Hustle

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Lennar industries was severely, although temporarily, damaged by unsubstantiated allegations in 2009. How did this happen to a company whose previous financial statements were clean?

GrubHub Puts Data on its Menu

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Are restaurants willing to give commissions of more than 20 percent of their total food orders to a data company?

Just Order the Tree Online, Charlie Brown

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Would you like to cut down your Christmas tree or just click to get it? Online Christmas tree sales are booming worldwide.

GE’s Lost Decade

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Why has GE’s stock dropped a third during Jeffrey Immelt’s tenure as CEO?

Why Amazon's Going Up In The Air

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Amazon is changing the physics of distribution.

The Truth About This Pork Chop and How America Feeds Itself

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can corporate meat processors be trusted to oversee worker and food safety?

A Lucrative Promise for India's Men: Whiter Skin

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

About 25 percent of skin care sales in India are from creams that promise to lighten skin color.

Keeping a Close Eye on Amazon's Discounts

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Camelcamelcamel's data and graphs help steer price-conscious Amazon shoppers to discounts that can top 30 percent.

Discount iPhones Come to India

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

In order to spur customers to use more data and decrease switching carriers, Reliance Communications is offering highly subsidized iPhones if customers agree to a two-year contract.

The J.Crew Invasion

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

J.Crew is invading London with American style at a higher price point. Will it succeed where others have failed?

The Scariest Veggies of Them All

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Are chemical and seed companies prioritizing public health as they develop new crop varieties?

Trying to Build the Next Amazon—in Nigeria

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Jumia wants to be the Amazon.com of Africa. Although Jumia and local rival Konga.com have taken a page from the playbook of Amazon.com, their deliveries are made with even more of a personal touch. You can take delivery by motorbike and pay in cash.

Thank You For Vaping

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Scented vapors with my nicotine, please.

Trying to Build the Next Amazon—in Nigeria

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Online retailing and delivery has to adapt to Nigerian's skepticism and roadway realities.

Forget Your Wallet

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

After some false starts, the next revolutionary shift in payments is gathering momentum.

Fast Food is Getting Lighter, Slowly

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Fast food companies are working together to find ways to make their food healthier.

Forget Your Wallet

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

As smartphone usage continues to increase, mobile payment transactions are expected to take a 38 percent jump to $325 billion in 2014.

Knitting a Supply Chain

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

ZARA's fast-moving supply chain quickly allows it to get new designs to stores worldwide.

The Battle Over Netflix

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Netflix shares have had a tremendous run this year. Are growing earnings fueling their rise in price?

Rebuilding Lego for Today’s Kids

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Lego has expanded its product lineup and tapped into Internet-based opportunities to fuel growth.

Rebuilding Lego for Today’s Kids

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Lego, which controls about 60 percent of the construction-toy business, seeks to woo older children and adults with new products.

The Battle Over Netflix

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With more than 40 million subscribers, Netflix has passed rival HBO and is looking overseas for growth.

Stranded

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Despite Apple's code of conduct and supply-chain audits, workers in the company's supply chain fall victim to excessive recruitment fees and other mistreatment.

Etsy's Identity Crisis

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can Etsy still claim to be “your place to buy and sell all things handmade”?

In China, Dell Clings Tightly to the Waning PC

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Dell is pursing retail sales, and opening up stores, to build market share in China.

Electrolux's Holy Trinity

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

To move up market, Electrolux is changing how it develops new products.

A Chicken Of Convenience

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Would you like condoms, cigarettes, or a chicken burrito? With traditional grocery stores sales falling, Tyson Foods now wants to leverage the marketing channel power of the more than 149,000 convenience stores in the United States.

A Chicken Of Convenience

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Fast food without the drive-through—it isn’t rocket science.

Mega Death

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can Service Corporation International continue to grow in the business of funeral homes and cemeteries?

Card Companies Try To Conquer Myanmar

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Using plastic to pay at retailers is growing, but still a novelty in Myanmar.

Apple's Got You

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Getting more personalized retail offers based on your preferences and shopping history is closer than you think.

Apple's Got You

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Apple is quietly seeding its mobile devices with iBeacon, which provides impressive location-based tracking. Why is the company being so quiet about this new technology?

SIM-Card Hackers Have a Few Questions for You

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Carriers around the world will suffer an estimated $3.6 billion in losses from fraudulent account takeovers.

Runs Out Fast

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The newest wells are not as productive as those drilled in the first year of the boom.

Liberté, Egalité…and Shopping on Sunday

Brian Kench, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Retails workers want to overturn a 1906 law that limits store hours.

A Brooklyn Beer With a Swedish Accent

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Brooklyn Brewery, through an arrangement with Denmark's Carlsberg Brewing, has tapped the Swedish market for high-priced beer.

Yes, Real Men Drink Beer and Use Skin Moisturizer

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Not for women only: Sales of men’s grooming products—from exfoliating scrubs to self-tanning creams—are expected to rise 5 percent this year, building a $17.5 billion industry.

Don't Even Think About Returning This Dress

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

About 65 percent of retailers in a recent survey reported they were victims of “wardrobing” (the practice of wearing and subsequently returning clothing items) in 2012. Many retailers are taking a stronger stand against the industry’s $8.8 billion-a-year return-fraud problem.

Don't Even Think About Returning This Dress

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Retailers are risking customer loyalty to fight back against return fraud.

An Ugly Dilemma for Beauty Companies

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chinese regulations mandating animal testing for cosmetic products are forcing cosmetic companies to make difficult choices between economic and social responsibility interests.

Don’t Even Think About Returning This Dress

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Refund fraud costs American merchants $8.8 billion each year. Now they are fighting back. But will they pay another price?

An Ugly Dilemma for Beauty Companies

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

In China, regulations require certain products to undergo testing on animals before being approved for human use, while in the EU some of these same products would be banned if animal testing was used.

Despicably Profitable

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How did Despicable Me 2 earn $840 million, and what effect has that had on Universal?

A Star-Powered Factory Opens in Haiti

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

IRII is using celebrity backing to bring change to Haiti's apparel industry and the lives of its workers.

Google Glass Targets the Cubicle

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Who is the target market for Google Glass? Glass may be able to find traction in the workplace and government agencies regardless of a lackluster consumer reaction.

Robosigning's Erin Brockovich

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Many homeowners who were victims of foreclosure during 2007 and 2008 had no idea that the banks doing the foreclosures didn't have documentation proving they had any right to seize the homes.

A Culture Clash in the Yogurt Aisle

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How has Danone reacted to the competition from Chobani in the Greek yogurt market? Is the company's reaction effective?

A Culture Clash in the Yogurt Aisle

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A no-fat, high protein food fight: Danone’s Oikos aggressive brand campaign has slowed the growth of its competitor and market leader Chobani in the $7.6 billion Greek-style yogurt U.S. market.

When a Dented iPhone is Better Than New

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Just like an old car, you can repair or trade in your smartphone.

Amazon Goes on a Building Spree

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Will Amazon's warehouse strategy be effective?

Splits End

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Only 10 companies in the S&P 500 have carried out stock splits this year, compared with an annual average of 48 since 1980.

Where Lawyers Never Go Hungry

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Although they don't involve physical injury or addiction, food-label lawsuits are proliferating.

Stretching The Medium

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With Medium, short-form online writing pioneer and Twitter co-creator Ev Williams is trying to rebuild waning Web attention spans.

Where Lawyers Never Go Hungry

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Is boasting about a product's health benefits worth it?

Where Lawyers Never Go Hungry

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

In Northern California’s federal courts, dozens of pending cases against food companies are seeking class-action status. Are these suits helping consumers or just the lawyers?

Old Looks On New Screens

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Mobile apps are a powerful component of marketing strategy. Mobile users may soon make up half of ModCloth's visitors, spending more per purchase than other customers.

What If Fast-Food Jobs Really Paid $15 an Hour?

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Are the wages paid to fast-food restaurant workers an ethical issue?

What If Fast-Food Jobs Really Paid $15 an Hour?

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

What would it mean to pay an extra dollar for a Big Mac?

The Viral Media Site That Optimizes Optimism

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With a goal of promoting meaningful stories, Upworthy reconsiders the nature of viral content.

Seeking a Phone for the End of the Desktop Era

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Canonical’s founder Mark Shuttleworth has crowdfunded millions of dollars to develop a super-superphone: a single device with phone and tablet capabilities that mimics all the functions of a PC. Will the numbers work?

The End

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Will Barnes & Noble remain in the e-reader market?

Recalculating Navigation Needs

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How do you compete with free? Car navigation manufacturers are struggling to compete with free smartphone-based systems that offer real-time data.

India’s Onion Crisis

Brian Kench, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The nation fights a losing battle against inflation—particularly in the price of a culinary favorite.

Recalculating Navigation Needs

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can built-in navigation systems compete with smartphones?

Hummus: The Great American Dip?

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Makers of hummus are modifying traditional recipes to suit American tastes. Will it be the next salsa?

Asia's Bitter Harvest

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The market for palm oil is expanding, but human rights abuses are rampant in this industry.

Asia's Bitter Harvest

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chances are pretty good that you'll consume some palm oil today and that you wouldn't want to work under the conditions in which it was produced.

The Sun Tzu at Sears

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Why have the net income results at Sears underperformed, and does it have anything to do with the management of Eddie Lampert?

World of Warcraft No Longer Rules in China

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Activision Blizzard's stock is up 40 percent this year, but its top game is losing market share in one of its largest markets: China.

Crowdsourcing Your Grocery Bags

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Using the fulfillment software as its secret sauce to combine orders placed at different times and fill them from different stores, an Amazon veteran is trying to take his online grocery startup, Instacart, national with $8 million from Sequoia Capital.

McFresh

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can the McWrap bring back the 18- to 32-year-olds who want fresher, healthier offerings? No longer on the millenial generation's top 10 list of favorite restaurant chains, McDonald’s launches the new “Subway buster” product for that demographic.

The Agony of the American Rancher

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

American cattle ranchers are suffering from an extended period of drought, wildfires, and rising costs. As a result, the U.S. beef cattle herd is at its lowest level since the 1950s.

Southern Discomfort

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Paula Deen's business depended on her life story, personal image, and reputation. Could the rapid collapse of her business empire have been avoided?

Crocs Wants You To Forget About Its Crocs

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Crocs is looking at a new image and international growth to spur sales.

H&M’s New Love For Old Clothes

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Europe's No. 2 fashion apparel chain will now give you a discount if you bring in your old castoff garments.

H&M’s New Love For Old Clothes

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

H&M's new program offers discounts to customers who bring in used clothing. Sustainable genius or greenwashing?

H&M's New Love For Old Clothes

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

H&M is offering customers discounts to encourage recycling of old clothes.

H&M's New Love For Old Clothes

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

H&M tries to spur sales by giving discounts to customers that bring in used clothes for recycling.

In Brazil, Highway Robbery Is Just That

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Why is Paranapanema, Brazil’s largest refined copper producer, switching its domestic shipments to slow-moving freighters from swifter trucks?

HP Makes Its Move Against IBM

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Hewlett-Packard is moving into enterprise data analytics to increase sales. Is it enough to alter the path of struggling company?

A Hunt for J.C. Penney's Missing Cashiers

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

At J.C. Penney, allowing staff to wear street clothes makes shoppers think there are few salesclerks in its store.

Dunkin' Hopes You Stop And Smell the Coffee

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Dunkin' Donuts ranks second lowest in atmosphere score for beverage and snack shops, so it's no surprise that the majority of its sales occur before noon. To encourage more customers to come in the afternoon and linger, Dunkin' will have new store designs more in line with leading coffee chains.

Dunkin’ Hopes You Stop and Smell the Coffee

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can Dunkin’ Donuts compete with Starbucks by remodeling their stores? Are other restaurants such as Wendy’s going to follow suit?

Can Coach Keep Walking to the Bank?

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Ralph Lauren did it. Can Coach? As Coach’s North American market share slips to 30 percent, the company hopes to leverage the luxury brand into other fashion categories. But why shoes?

Promise, This Won’t Hurt a Bit

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Startup MC10 miniaturizes medical diagnostic devices and has enlisted big-name partners in the medical and sports world.

Rise of the Alpha Dads

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

In the U.S., working dads say they want more time with their children -- more so than moms.

Theme Parks Are on a Roll

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How are revenues and profit margins for theme parks holding up in these weak economic times?

There Can Be Only One

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Microsoft dominates console wars and now it wants the rest of your family’s TV time.

Selling Cassava Beer in a Land Without Barley

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

SAB Miller sells 46 local beer brands across Africa, and produces locally to lower costs and excise taxes.

Where's the Colonel When You Need Him?

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

At its Chinese restaurants, KFC’s “finger lickin’ good” eats offer more local dishes, such as chili black fungus and fishball soup, undermining its American identity.

Crowdsourcing an End to Sweatshops

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Systems based on anonymous employee phone calls may be able to help Western companies monitor and improve working conditions in factories across the globe.

Facebook Struggles to Find its Footing

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Facebook scrambles to make money from mobile. Does it have a plan to make it profitable?

Where's the Colonel When You Need Him?

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

KFC, China's largest fast food chain, has seen revenue fall as consumers became concerned about the spread of bird flu.

The City that Runs on Sensors

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can sensors really help us with traffic congestion?

The Perils of Price-Matching

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Two years ago Wal-Mart rolled out its "simplified" Ad Match Guarantee. The program is proving to be anything but simple to execute consistently across all stores and could even create a consumer backlash.

The Perils of Price-Matching

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Walmart’s nationally advertised price-matching promotion shows how a popular retail strategy can create a consumer backlash.

The Paradox of Bangladesh

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

How should multinational companies respond to deplorable working conditions in Bangladeshi factories?

The Perils of Price-Matching

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Implementation vagaries may be causing a consumer backlash to Wal-Mart’s national price-matching promotions.

Bond Investors Hope to Avoid a Repeat of '94

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Will clear communications from Bernanke help avoid market disruptions when the Fed finally allows interest rates to rise?

The Paradox of Bangladesh

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The collapse of a garment factory in Bangladesh brings attention to a huge export industry that's helping Bangladeshi citizens out of poverty - with pay under $50 a month.

Usain Bolt: The App

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can the garage developer survive the branded app?

Your Phone Knows What You're Watching

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

TV networks are investing in an app that keeps viewers subsidizing the TV ad model even while glancing down at their phone.

What’s Hot Right Now? Drywall

Brian Kench, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Bottlenecks emerge as the housing recovery gathers pace.

China's Latest Illegal Import: Baby Formula

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Concerns about local baby formula in China drive demand for illegally imported baby formula.

H&M, a Master of Cheap Fashion, Moves Upscale

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

What do you in a struggling economy? H&M says raise prices as it opens new upscale stores as a way to expand into Europe’s fast-growing market for shoes and accessories.

What’s Good for Toyota Isn’t Always Good for Japan

Brian Kench, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Yen depreciation helps big exporters but won’t do much for the little guy.

Why More Extreme Foods Are Creeping Onto Menus

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Americans are eating healthier foods at home but not when they dine out. America’s fast-food industry has embraced rich, fatty, gooey extreme foods to grab diners' attention, and the Glazed Donut Breakfast Sandwich is just one example.

LinkedIn is Trying to Quicken its Pulse

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Visit more, stay longer. LinkedIn doesn't mind if you do.

Stocking the Shelves With a Green Solution

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Lack of information creates opportunity for Green Depot’s environmentally friendly building products.

Can Penney Get Off The Down Escalator?

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can bringing back former CEO Myron Ullman save J.C. Penney? Only if he can win back customers while conserving cash.

Can Foursquare Check-In to Adulthood?

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Have you heard of Foursquare? If not, you're not alone.

Can Penney Get Off The Down Escalator?

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

After losing almost $1 billion in the past year, J.C. Penney brings back former CEO Myron Ullman to revive the retailer.

A Craft Beer Pioneer Gets a Second Chance

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

What does a 37-year-old beer taste like? New Albion Ale has been resurrected with the help of Boston Beer and their runs of 6,000 barrels exceed its total sales in the 1970s.

Think Colossal

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Samsung is now the top seller of smartphones, the number one manufacturer of LCD televisions, the seller of more flash memory and RAM chips than any other company, and passed Nokia to become the world’s largest mobile phone manufacturer. What next?

What Good Are Low Prices If the Shelves Are Empty

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Is it a good operations management practice to cut costs by reducing the number of employees, which may result in longer checkout lines, less help throughout the store, and disorganization?

What Good Are Low Prices If the Shelves Are Empty

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Why have some customers been switching from Walmart to their competitors to shop? Has Walmart cut costs too far?

The Merger Boom That Fizzled

Delvin D. Hawley, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The value of global takeover and merger announcements in March was the lowest since July 2009. Why do some think a sharp rebound is coming soon?

Lululemon, Exposed

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Will see-through yoga pants damage Lululemon's relationship with its customers?

L'Oreal Puts On a Happy Face in China

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

By tailoring products to the local market, including use of traditional ingredients, L'Oreal is boosting sales in China.

China's Journey from Imitator to Innovator

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

You make the call. Are China's Internet companies imitators or innovators?

Estee Lauder Launches its Own M.A.C. Attack

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

M.A.C. cosmetics finds sales opportunities for its high-end products in ethnic areas and emerging markets.

Estee Lauder Launches its Own M.A.C. Attack

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Estee Lauder is using its M.A.C. cosmetics line, a hit with ethnic consumers at home, to enter emerging markets.

Grooming Advice From a Virtual Stylist

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

A speech-recognition pioneer’s latest startup hopes to build conversation simulators that almost any business can use.

Streaming With a Little Help from Your Friends

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Netflix's latest innovation is to allow their 33 million online subscribers to view and comment on videos seen by their Facebook friends. Is this a promotional dream come true?

An Online Food Fight, Big Apple Style

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Online grocers FreshDirect and Peapod are battling it out in New York City.

How Apple's iWatch Can Be a Moneymaker

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can Apple design something else that consumers didn’t even know they needed: a smart wristwatch? Apple needs a boost, and the company hopes it's time for the smartwatch to give them a hand.

How Apple's iWatch Can Be a Moneymaker

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Apple sells a lot of electronics, but can it sell the iWatch?

PepsiCo Prepares For a Snack War in Russia

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

With its $4.2 billion acquisition of Wimm-Bill-Dann last year, PepsiCo is now the biggest food and beverage maker in Russia. PepsiCo's objective of using Russia as a springboard to reach customers in former Soviet republics won't be without huge challenges, but the payback also could be huge.

Will China Get a Kick From Champagne?

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Chinese consumers have embraced cognac and Champagne as symbols of westernization and conspicuous consumption.

PepsiCo Prepares For a Snack War in Russia

Michael S. Raisinghani, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

PepsiCo collects $5 billion in annual sales in Russia, its second-largest market after the U.S., which it’s using as a staging ground for expansion into fast-growing Eastern Europe.

PepsiCo Prepares For a Snack War in Russia

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Pepsi is investing in healthy (and not so healthy) foods in the former USSR, while adapting products to local tastes.

PepsiCo Prepares For a Snack War in Russia

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

PepsiCo sells $5 billion worth of products a year in Russia and is using the market as a staging ground for expansion into Eastern Europe. And it's not just about selling Pepsi anymore.

Mattel’s Mom Issue: They Really Don’t Get Hot Wheels

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Why doesn’t mom know how to play with Hot Wheels? Mattel sells $1 billion in Hot Wheels annually, and with that number is shrinking, the company wants to find the answer.

The Tax Preparers Who Heart Obamacare

Larry Tunnell, Ph.D., CPA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Will Obamacare make you more reliant on your tax adviser? How might tax advisers be impacted when Obamacare is finally fully implemented?

Can You Spot the Horse Meat?

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

What potential risks are suggested by Ireland's discovery of horse meat in hamburger?

Do You Really Want To Talk to Your Kitchen?

Pedro M. Reyes, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

“The Jetsons” are here. The smart home-automation envisioned in the show's scenarios are finally possible. SmartThings wants to make household devices talk to each other.

Before the Fancy Bottle, Time Spent in a Bladder

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Most wine exported from Australia now ships in container-sized plastic bladders, to be bottled after the ocean journey.

Mobile Apps, Now for Immobile Devices

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

BlueStacks’ App Player software could mean that mobile apps can be used on any device or operating system. A gamer’s dream come true -- and more.

The Future of Browsers Isn't What it Used to Be

Angelina I. T. Kiser, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Web browsers’ looks and functions are changing as companies such as Microsoft and Google tie them into their operating systems.

How a Turkish Immigrant Made a Billion Dollars in Eight Years Selling Yogurt

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Hamdi Ulukaya, a Turkish immigrant, is an billion dollar American success story. Chobani’s payroll has almost doubled in the past year with plants in Idaho and Australia, and more growth is on the horizon. Can the yogurt be that good?

The Bigger the Brand Is, the Smaller It Should Act

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

J.Crew needed to reposition their brand with men, and the retailer took an unusual approach. It decided smaller is better.

China's Unsafe Water Is Nestle's Opportunity

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Sales of bottled water in China are strong, as consumers question drinking tap water.

A Tennis Star Seeks the Sweet Taste of Success

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

What do you get when you cross a Russian-born tennis star with a gummy candy? Maria Sharapova is betting $500,000 that the answer is a profitable, upscale candy company.

The New Willy Loman Survives by Staying at Home

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Economics is pushing the field salesperson online with impressive savings. Will this transition come at a cost?

Sticky Gold

Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

The disappearance of $18 million of Canadian maple syrup is one of the largest agricultural thefts ever. While $18 million is a substantial sum, the motivation for the theft may have been philosophical.

Austerity Be Damned: Pass the Remote

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Italy has turned out to be a great market for QVC, with the company's average tele-shopper spending around $1,900 a year.

Only BFFs Need Apply

James J. Stewart, DSc  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Companies are increasingly hiring employees who fit in with existing company culture, even if their job skills are lower than those of other applicants.

Unilever: Taking on the World, One Stall at a Time

Duane Helleloid, Ph.D.  |  Consumer Goods & Services

By emphasizing market share and having brands across many price points, Unilever is expanding in emerging markets.

China’s Smartphone Market Welcomes Dumbphones

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

China is now the world’s largest smartphone market and home to Lenovo, the world’s biggest PC vendor. In 2013, Lenovo is working to get every phone sale possible. Look out Apple?

Is the Party Over for Uggs?

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Sales of Uggs footwear fell 12 percent in the third quarter of 2012. Can Decker Outdoor survive?

Japan's Pain is Wal-Mart's Gain

Ralph W Flanary, MBA, CFE  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Many global discount retailers have tried to establish a presence in Japan. After a dismal past in the country, Wal-Mart now believes there is hope for its "every day low prices" slogan there.

Sharp’s Profits on LCD Panels: Worse Than Flat

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Sharp forecasted a record loss on November 1, 2012, twice the previous estimate, raising questions about its ability to survive. Sharp once dominated the LCD television industry with a 22 percent market share.

The War Over Christmas

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Brick-and-mortar retailers are applying valuable lessons acquired from their online competitors this holiday season. Look out, Amazon.

Microsoft Sees a New Image of Itself in Windows 8

Douglas L. Wilson, MBA  |  Consumer Goods & Services

Can Windows 8 enable Microsoft to reposition itself in its desperate fight for relevance? With broken partnerships in its wake, the stakes for Microsoft have never been higher.


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