Street Fight Daily: Walmart Still Hungry for Startups, Kohl’s Makes Deal With Devil

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A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…

To Keep Up with Tech Competitors, Walmart Says It Will Acquire More Startups (TechCrunch)
The retail behemoth is looking to buy businesses in the technology, retail, and digital native brands categories, said Marc Lore, CEO of Walmart eCommerce U.S.

So Long Local Search — Hello Machine-Directed Discover (Street Fight)
Gideon Rubin: Whatever you thought you knew about getting your business found online and on mobile, or whatever you are currently learning, is already obsolete. The way consumers interact with search technology today is on its way out. Why? Autonomous cars, artificial intelligence and voice commands are all transforming search into something we can only begin to imagine.

Amazon’s Invasion of Kohl’s Has Begun (Recode)
The discount department store is starting to accept returns of Amazon orders at 10 of what will eventually be 82 of its Chicago and Los Angeles stores. Kohl’s has also begun unveiling mini Amazon shops in some its locations, where customers will be able to try out and purchase gadgets like the Amazon Echo and Kindle.

Local Media Consortium Not About to Retreat From Its Google and Facebook Ties (Street Fight)
Tom Grubisich: Questions are being raised about whether news publishers should keep expanding their relationships with Google and Facebook, and even whether they should pull out altogether. But you don’t hear that talk from the Local Media Consortium, which represents more than 70 newspaper, broadcasting and other local media companies.

Facebook Is Officially Rolling Out Explore, Its Alternative News Feed (AdWeek)
Explore is an ad-free (thus far) News Feed made up entirely of content from publishers—pages followed and not followed by users.

BuzzFeed CEO Says Duopoly Should Share the Wealth (WSJ)
Tech giants Facebook Inc. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google will have to find better ways to share revenue with media companies to support quality content, said BuzzFeed Chief Executive Jonah Peretti.

The Guardian Remains Committed to VR Despite Lack of Commercial Opportunities (Digiday)
At the beginning of October, the publisher — which has experimented with VR for over a year — started bringing its nine different VR experiences into its Guardian VR app and sent out 100,000 Google Cardboard headsets to make its VR content more accessible.

Patch: We’re Still Around, Making Strides in Hyperlocal (MediaPost)
Patch, the hyperlocal news publisher that spun out of AOL in 2014, is gaining traction and building a loyal audience base. It uses a combination of community news and conventional subscription models, as well as integrating with diverse news feeds and aggregators.

Blue Apron Lays Off Hundreds Months After IPO (CNN)
Blue Apron laid off 6% of its staff across its fulfillment centers and corporate offices on Wednesday in an effort to get closer to profitability, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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Joe Zappa is the Managing Editor of Street Fight. He has spearheaded the newsroom's editorial operations since 2018. Joe is an ad/martech veteran who has covered the space since 2015. You can contact him at [email protected]