October 17, 2019

With nearly 2 million employees on the payroll, McDonald’s is constantly hiring new people to work at its thousands of locations across the globe. So in recent years the fast food giant has streamlined its hiring process to accommodate online applicants, who tend to be younger and applying for their first jobs. Then last month, McDonald’s took this concept to the next level by announcing that people can now apply for jobs using voice commands through Amazon’s Alexa or Google Continue reading

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October 15, 2019

Each year, the toy brand Nerf earns more than $400 million in revenue by selling bright neon “blasters” that shoot rubber-tipped darts. But while the Hasbro-owned company moves plenty of blasters, it has a little more trouble with the darts. Since Nerf’s foam ammo can be easily copied, consumers often opt for cheaper alternatives rather than pay a premium for Nerf-branded darts. “We’ve had the same dart or similar dart for so many years that it’s become uniformed across our Continue reading

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October 8, 2019

When Apple launched the iTunes store in 2003, the music industry was not in a good state. Rampant online piracy sent CD sales plummeting and caused many to wonder whether record companies could compete against the freedom of the Internet. Fortunately for the industry, the iTunes strategy of selling individual songs for just 99 cents made buying digital music mainstream and limited the reach of piracy. The app also drove sales of the iPod, which was Apple’s signature product at Continue reading

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October 4, 2019

In recent years food delivery startups like Postmates and Doordash have grown into multi-billion dollar operations by bringing takeout from all sorts of places directly to customers’ doors. But these companies don’t just service restaurants: people can also order everyday items from Walgreens or 7-Eleven and receive them hours later. Of course, consumers are more familiar with Postmates and Doordash as takeout services, not grocery delivery companies. 

As a result, both startups are brokering deals with retailers and supermarkets Continue reading

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September 27, 2019

Baking bread is a difficult enterprise under the best circumstances, but baking on an industrial scale is so complicated that only a few long-standing companies have truly mastered it. At the same time, the products made by brands like Wonder Bread are often packed with chemicals that many health-conscious consumers want to avoid. That’s where La Boulange comes in, a San Francisco bakery that runs 24 hours a day and operates like a factory. The video below shows how La Continue reading

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September 20, 2019

This week Netflix announced that it spent $500 million to acquire the streaming rights to Seinfeld, which broadcast its last episode way back in 1998. While it may seem strange to spend so much money on a decades-old show, Netflix is far from the only streaming service to splash cash on a classic sitcom. Along with paying $425 million for Friends, HBO Max also acquired the streaming rights to The Big Bang Theory for $1 billion. Meanwhile, NBC-Universal Continue reading

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September 3, 2019

In the days before e-commerce, department stores like Macy’s and J.C. Penney were the ultimate shopping destinations for millions of consumers. But with Amazon now dominating much of the retail world, these companies can no longer attract the same crowds as they did in their glory days. While Macy’s recently fell far short of its second quarter sales estimates, J. C. Penney has lost a total of $101 million so far in 2019. 

In order to make up for Continue reading

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August 30, 2019

For decades Lacroix sparkling water sat on the bottom shelves of countless grocery stores next to high class competitors like Perrier and S.Pellegrino. Too niche for regular consumers and too cheap for mineral water drinkers, LaCroix struggled for relevance until a company called National Beverage acquired it in the 1990s. Along with developing new flavors and adding more carbonation, the company also redesigned LaCroix’s cans and increased distribution around the country. By the mid-2000s many consumers began to turn away Continue reading

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August 29, 2019

On August 12, Popeyes announced that it was adding a new chicken sandwich to menus across the nation. The first of its kind at the fast food chain, Popeyes said this was its biggest product launch in more than 30 years. The sandwich soon became a hot topic on social media and grabbed the attention of more than just hungry customers. In the days following the launch, Chick-fil-A started a social media feud with Popeyes over which chain had the Continue reading

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August 20, 2019

In 2018 users on the video streaming platform Twitch watched more than 505 billion minutes of live streams, up from 355 billion minutes the previous year. At some point many of those viewers likely tuned into Tyler “Ninja” Blevins, a streamer of the video game Fortnite who once boasted more than 14 million followers on Twitch. Along with earning ad revenue and subscription money from streaming, Ninja also made millions from lucrative endorsement deals with companies like Uber Eats and Continue reading

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