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April 11, 2014 - Lego Systems, Inc. hosted the 'Build for Good' competition where Seattle's most innovative companies, including Amazon, Egencia, Expedia, HTC, Nordstrom, Xbox and Zulily, were invited to compete by building a Lego Mindstorms robot designed to improve everyday life on April 10. Shubham Banerjee, 12 year old inventor of Braigo, a Braille printer that anyone can build using a Lego Mindstorms set, inspired the challenge and was among the judges who awarded Nordstrom with top honors for creating a robot that made it easier to dispense medication.

Read more: Seattle Companies Battle in Lego Mindstorms Competition

April 10, 2014 - RadioShack today announced the opening of its latest custom concept store, located in Boston near the site of the company's first retail location, which opened in 1921. This bolder, brighter custom concept store celebrates RadioShack's founding history in Boston, along with its deep-rooted commitment to collaborating with consumers to uncover what is possible through technology.

Read more: RadioShack Returns to Boston Roots


April 9, 2014The Simpsons gets ready to take on the runway with all new fashion collaborations as Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products and major fashion brands release unique new collections in 2014. Fox Consumer Products announces today global trendsetting brands Drop Dead, Uniqlo and Eleven Paris are the next partners to release 2014 collections with The Simpsons, joining Converse, Joyrich, A Bathing Ape and Threadless.

Read more: The Simpsons Hit The Runway

How Retailers Can Invest in Labor to Lower Costs and Improve Profits

Every once in a while you come across a simple idea that really forces you to stop and think…and then it makes you stop again and think some more.

For me that happened just the other day when I purchased and read a copy of Zeynep Ton’s new book entitled The Good Jobs Strategy: How the Smartest Companies Invest in Employees to Lower Costs and Boost Profits.

Ms. Ton is an Associate Professor of Operations Management at MIT Sloan School of Management.  Over the past 10 years she’s conducted a vast amount of research focused on the critical role of store operations in retail supply chains and exploring how retailers can design and manage their operations in a way that satisfies employees, customers, and investors simultaneously.

Professor Ton’s simple, but powerful, idea is that retailers can invest heavily in store employees and simultaneously deliver lower prices, higher profits, and better customer service than their competitors.

Read the full story on the Retail Merchandiser blog.

April 4, 2014Lisa Marks Associates, Inc. (LMA), a full-service licensing and marketing agency, has announced that it has expanded licensing programs for Just Born Quality Confections and its Peeps, Hot Tamales, and Mike and Ike brands with key strategic partners and new products.

Read more: LMA Adds Key Partners to Just Born Licensing Programs

April 3, 2014 - Celebrity Interior Designer Jennifer Adams has reached a multi-year, licensing agreement with the MT Company, an institution in the industry with a long history of producing hand-built, quality furniture. This new relationship rounds out Jennifer's robust licensing programs that consists of bedding, fabrics, bathroom sets, rugs, apparel, pet products, and home fragrance products.

Read more: Jennifer Adams Worldwide Partners with The MT Company

April 2, 2014 - Market research is a crucial part of a successful business venture. When you know what your customer is thinking and what drives consumer behavior, you can successfully target them and make your product a success. 6.7 billion dollars are spent on market research each year, and it’s an ever-growing business especially as technology and social media sites continue to spawn anew each day.

However, in the past, market research on shopping behavior has been very limited. For example, if a retailer or manufacturer wanted to monitor customer behavior, they would simply strive to track in-store behavior and purchases. Alternatively, companies could survey shoppers about their in-store behavior to try to understand why they bought (or didn’t buy) the products on the shelves.

Read the full story on the Retail Merchandiser blog.

April 1, 2014 - According to a survey conducted by Mooslyvania, Millennials are getting an undeserved bad reputation as consumers. The survey appears to refute common myths associated with this generation and unveils insightful data on what really motivates them in how they think, shop, buy and continue purchasing their favorite brands. Millennials – defined as anyone between the ages of 13-33 – account for nearly $1.3 trillion in consumer spending and spend the second most amount of time of any generation online – 87 percent as much as Gen X'ers.

Read more: Refuting Myths About Millennials