Google, IRL. Google's first retail store is open in New York. Customers can try out and purchase Pixel phones, Fitbits, Chromebooks and more, as well as get products serviced. Saying “just google it” seems to be making less and less sense.
They let anyone be a landlord these days. Jeff Bezos and Marc Benioff are investing in Arrived Homes. The startup company removes some barriers to entry and makes real estate ownership accessible to nearly anyone through owning shares of rental properties.
More Sights & Sounds. Stripe goes AI with identity verification. Affirm announces that all U.S. Shopify merchants will be able to use Shop Pay. Canon raises morale at its Chinese offices by only letting employees who are smiling come inside and book meeting rooms. The AI robots can recognize the unmitigated happiness of humans being pushed to their limits. HBO Max users got a mystery treat in their inboxes with “Integration Test Email #1” and Twitter was absolutely there for it. And finally, check out this billboard outside of Apple’s HQ.
Throwback to the safari. Banana Republic is working to make a comeback with BR Vintage. The brand tracked down 225 of its pieces from the 80’s and 90’s to launch a limited capsule of items online at proprietary prices, many of which are already sold out. Also, when you go visit your dad for father’s day, you could probably dig through his closet to find some of their vintage pieces.
Not Always, Coca-Cola. Cristiano Ronaldo, a professional soccer player from Portugal, moved two Coca-Cola bottles out of his way for a press conference, and said, ”water.” This small gesture resulted in a $4 billion market value drop for the refreshment company. Star power is real power.
All baked up and nowhere to go. This year, the girl scouts have 15 million unsold boxes of cookies, and say Covid is to blame, not a lack of demand. This cookie dilemma seems to have also brought other issues to the surface. A handful of troops chose not to sell cookies this year because of an AP story linking the cookies to child labor in the palm oil industry. The Girl Scouts are working to donate or sell the remaining boxes to food banks and institutions such as the military and possibly prisons.
More Palate news. Head to LA if you’re into sushi for gamers. Or if waffles are more your thing, check out this guy who stayed at a Waffle House for 15 hours and ate 9 waffles as a punishment for coming in last place in his fantasy football league.
Climate (report) change. “Clean” big tech is urging the SEC to push companies to issue reports on their climate impacts. Alphabet, Amazon, Autodesk, eBay, Facebook, Intel, and Salesforce wrote a joint letter to SEC chair, Gary Gensler, urging future action on rules around climate change disclosures.
Protecting Dynastic Wealth. Abigail Disney, granddaughter of Roy Disney (Walt’s brother) wrote a really interesting piece somewhat in response to the ProPublica report on the tax profiles of ultra rich Americans. She was raised in that world and talks about some of the ideals therein, such as “the government can’t be trusted with money.” It’s an interesting and thought-provoking read to enjoy at the end of your week!