Costco Defies the Big Box Apocalypse

With so many retailing giants such as J.C. Penney , Sears, and Best Buy falling by the wayside in what has aptly been named the “Big Box Apocalypse,” it’s very reassuring to see Costco , the leading warehouse retailer in the U.S., thriving in the midst of all the retail industry snafu. Costco is still posting healthy gains even as the once mighty Wal-Mart  and Target  struggle to remain afloat. So what makes Costco tick?

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Lowe’s partners with

Lowe’s continues to enter the tech world with a recent partnership with, a four-month-old startup that aggregates data about home improvement projects all around the US. will be in the hands of Lowe’s employees in 139 stores in the Seattle, North Carolina, and South Carolina area.

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Google buys Nest for 3.2B in cash

Google is acquiring connected device company Nest for $3.2 billion. Google sent out an email to employees noting the acquisition today and later issued a press release.

In the release, Google noted that Nest has been offering its best-selling thermostat since 2011 and recently began offering the Protect smoke alarm, which networks with its other devices.

Nest Founders Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers will both join Google. Rogers was one of the first engineers on the iPhone team at Apple.

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Lowe’s sees Iris as a future growth catalyst

Lowe’s might not often be thought of as an innovative company. Most consumers see it as a place to go for home improvements, especially if a Lowe’s location is more convenient than a Home Depot location.

Lowe’s and Home Depot might be competitors, but they’re both likely to be long-term winners, and they’re both more innovative than most people realize. There are many different innovative avenues to explore for Lowe’s and Home Depot, but this article will primarily focus on Lowe’s Iris system, which rolled out in 2012 with 40 home-automated products.

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Costco stands out over the holidays

Heavy discounting and slow traffic weighed on retailers’ December sales results, but Costco Wholesale Corp. ( COST ) was among the few that bucked the trend.

The wholesale club reported sales at stores open at least a year rose 5% for the month, topping expectations for a 2.6% increase. Among the stronger performing categories were garden, automotive, apparel, small appliances and home furnishings. The consumer electronics category posted improvement from recent months, but the metric still declined slightly.

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Costco co-founder Sinegal honored with top retail award

Costco Wholesale co-founder Jim Sinegal has been awarded the National Retail Federation’s Gold Medal Award, the organization said Tuesday. The trade association said that under Sinegal’s long tenure as chief executive the Issaquah-based company grew into the biggest warehouse-club retailer in the U.S.

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Lowe’s unveils latest features in Iris Smart Home Solutions at CES

New Iris products and services will include a water shut-off valve that cuts supply when a leak is detected, a voice control feature,smart sprinkler systems, smart meter add-ons, universal garage door openers, additional energy saving devices and more.

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What is a Costco membership really worth?

Costco , Sam’s Club of Wal-Mart , and privately owned BJ’s Wholesale offer over 1,475 membership-only warehouse club locations throughout the world. In contrast to much of the rest of the retail industry, Costco has continued to outperform while increasing its membership and net sales annually. This is despite the pressure from online retailers like  on the retail industry. Going forward, though, what is a Costco membership really worth?

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What has Walmart worried

Ask six senior merchandising executives from Walmart and Sam’s Club what keeps them up at night and be prepared for an interesting collection of answers relating to key competitors and assorted challenges.

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