Too soon for Google Glass?

Last week Google announced that it was pulling the plug on its pet project - Google Glass. This latest marketing ploy suggests that the tech giant didn't fully understand what value Google Glass would have in the electronics world. The device which consists of a glasses-like frame with a small screen above the user's right eye, promised to deliver multiple, revolutionary hands-free applications. Whilst this may sound like a step forward for gadgetry fans, Glass simply didn't compete in the...

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How will oil prices affect the supply chain?

A few years ago the concern was rising oil prices. Since the mid 90’s many companies have tried to reduce operational costs and achieve a lean supply chain by putting emphasis on outsourcing manufacturing and facility consolidation. The underlying basis behind these trends was cheap oil. Quite recently the price of crude oil dipped below $48.48, the cheapest it has been since 2008. So what happens when oil prices go down? Looking into the not so distant future, oil prices...

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The Big Four vs The Disrupters

2015 is looking bleak for the retail sector. Recent figures have shown a poor performance for the ‘Big Four’ at the hands of German retailers Lidl and Aldi. Sainsbury’s saw its first Christmas sales decline in a decade, although the performance was ahead of expectations, while Iceland’s boss Malcolm Walker has described it’s trading over the festive period as “bloody awful”. There is also no sign of a pick-up in the grocery market despite the falling cost of fuel, which...

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We Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day

In the immortal words of Roy Wood’s Wizard - “We wish it Could be Christmas Every day ... “. But do we? What exactly would the retail sector look like if it was Christmas 365 days a year? Seasonal cheer and longer store opening hours are usually expected this time of year. Birmingham’s Bull Ring has extended its opening hours from 10:00am – 10:00pm in the run up to Christmas, and just down the street eager shoppers can experience the...

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The madness of Black Friday

With Black Friday fast approaching, we take a look at the mammoth sales day and consider the possibility that it might be a step too far? There appear to be a number of stories for how black Friday got its name, though the idea that that it was the day on which retailers moved into the black seems highly improbable. How do you make a profit if you are throwing away margin with such abandon? From last year's experience it seems more...

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