Business Insider
Analyzing the top news stories across the web

Sept. 21 2016 5:07 PM

The Demise of Sports Authority Is Great News for Dick’s Sporting Goods

This post originally appeared on Business Insider.

Dick's Sporting Goods is running out of competitors — and that's great news for the retail chain.

Many of the brand's rivals have fallen on hard times, says Paul R. La Monica at CNN Money.

Sports Authority and Sport Chalet have gone out of business amid an overall downturn in the athletic equipment industry, and Golfsmith recently filed for bankruptcy.

Sept. 19 2016 4:43 PM

Kmart Is Closing 64 Stores and Laying Off Thousands

This post originally appeared on Business Insider.

Kmart is closing 64 stores across 28 states.

Sears Holdings, which owns Sears and Kmart, informed Kmart employees of the closures on Friday, according to several local news reports and multiple employees who spoke with Business Insider.

The stores that are closing will begin liquidation sales on September 22 and close by mid-December, employees said.

Sept. 16 2016 5:06 PM

Breweries and Alcohol Distributors Are Getting Nervous About Weed Legalization in the Northeast

Big players in the alcohol business are pushing back on a major marijuana legalization initiative.

Massachusetts is one of five states with a ballot initiative this year that could legalize recreational use of marijuana, and the alcohol industry is leading the charge to stop the initiative. In Massachusetts, a political action committee that represents 16 of the state's beer distributors isamong the top three donors to an anti-legalization group, The Intercept's Lee Fang discovered.

Sept. 15 2016 5:50 PM

Samsung’s Exploding Note 7 Is Officially Getting a Recall

This post originally appeared on Business Insider.

The US Consumer Product Safety Commission has officially recalled Samsung's Galaxy Note 7.

Here's the CPSC's statement:

This recall involves the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 smartphone sold before September 15, 2016. The recalled devices have a 5.7 inch screen and were sold in the following colors: black onyx, blue coral, gold platinum and silver titanium with a matching stylus. Samsung is printed on the top front of the phone and Galaxy Note 7 is printed on the back of the phone.

The recall comes after Samsung said it found several cases where Note 7 phones exploded.

The CPSC listing for the recall says about 1 million Note 7 units are affected by the recall. Customers can get a replacement phone (a Samsung Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, or a new Note 7 without the battery problem) or a refund. They can go to Samsung's website and input the IMEI number on the back of their phone to see if their device is affected. In the meantime, the CPSC suggested that users power down their Note 7.

In a statement to Business Insider, Samsung said replacement Note 7 phones will be in retail locations by Sept. 21.

The CPSC says there are 92 reported cases of batteries overheating in the US. That includes 26 reports of burns and 55 reports of property damage.  A CPSC spokesperson told reporters on a conference call that the Note 7 represents "a very serious fire hazard."

Samsung halted sales of the device about two weeks ago following reports that some batteries were exploding inside the device. Customers were instructed to contact their retailer to exchange the device for another Samsung phone or a refund. Airlines and public transportation organizations have been telling riders not to power on their Note 7s while in transit.

However, there have been several issues with the returns, as documented in reports by the Wall Street Journal and Gizmodo. Users report that Samsung's retail and carrier partners were not prepared to exchange Galaxy Note 7s, which frustrated many.

It's particularly bad timing for Samsung. The recall comes a day before Apple's new iPhone 7 goes on sale. The Note 7 received universally positive reviews ahead of the iPhone 7 launch.

Samsung has lost at least $20 billion in market cap since reports of Note 7 problems began two over two weeks ago.

Sept. 9 2016 11:30 AM

Why Is Apple Jacking Up the Prices of Its Devices in the U.K.?

Apple has used the cover of the iPhone 7 launch to bump up the prices of many of its products in Britain—apparently in response to a weak pound following Britain's vote to leave the EU.

The Cupertino technology giant has increased the U.K. prices of certain models of iPhone, iPad Pro, and iPad Air—while retaining the older, smaller pricetag in the U.S.

On Wednesday, Apple announced the iPhone 7, as well as the second Apple Watch, in its biggest launch day of the year. At the same time, it has increased the minimum internal storage in many of its devices, up from 16GB to 32GB.

On Apple's American website, this hasn't affected prices. But U.K. customers could be in for a shock if they were holding off on purchasing goods in the hope of a reduction.

The iPhone 7 is the most obvious offender. The cheapest version of the 6s retailed for £539; its successor, the 32GB iPhone 7, goes for £599 ($649 in the U.S., then and now). Meanwhile, the highest-end model, with 256GB of storage, is £919—£100 more than its predecessor.

Sept. 3 2016 9:00 AM

Why Coca-Cola Is Getting Into the Coffee Game

This post originally appeared on Business Insider.

Coca-Cola is investing in coffee.

On Thursday, Coca-Cola’s iced tea brand Gold Peak announced it is entering the ready-to-drink coffee business. The brand, which is currently best known for its $1 billion bottled iced tea business, will launch bottled coffees and tea lattes in the first quarter of 2017.

It’s a move that reveals Coca-Cola’s plans to enter the $2 billion ready-to-drink coffee industry—a move that might be key to the company’s future.

In July, Coca-Cola reported that its sparkling-beverage sales by volume dropped 1 percent in the second quarter, part of a larger downward trend in soda consumption. In 2015, the total volume of soda consumed in the US dropped 1.2 percent, compared to a drop of 0.9 percent in 2014, according to Beverage Digest.

As a result, Coca-Cola and Pepsi are looking to other beverages to grow sales.

Sept. 2 2016 12:18 PM

Samsung Is Recalling Its Exploding Phone. And Its Problems Are Only Getting Worse.

This post originally appeared on Business Insider.

Samsung’s nightmare scenario is happening.

The South Korean electronics giant was forced to suspend sales of its new flagship smartphone, the Galaxy Note 7, on Friday because dozens of the handsets have exploded.

The phone, which has been extremely well reviewed, is now also being recalled worldwide, in a move that is likely to cost Samsung hundreds of millions of dollars.

And compounding matters, the colossal disaster comes on the eve of the launch of a new iPhone from Samsung’s archrival Apple.

It’s a hard to overstate the size of this screw-up.

Sept. 1 2016 1:25 PM

Walmart Is Cutting 7,000 Office Jobs

Walmart is cutting 7,000 office jobs from its retail stores.

The positions, which involve invoicing and accounting in stores' back offices, are among the company's highest-paid hourly jobs. Sarah Nassauer at the Wall Street Journal first reported the cuts.

Walmart wants its back-office employees interacting with shoppers instead of doing paperwork, a Walmart spokeswoman told Business Insider.

Aug. 31 2016 6:13 PM

Theranos Is Temporarily Withdrawing Its Month-Old Zika Test 

This post originally appeared on Business Insider.

Theranos is withdrawing its bid for FDA approval of a diagnostic test for Zika that they announced earlier in August, according to a story in The Wall Street Journal.

Theranos confirmed to Business Insider that the test has been withdrawn, but said the company has plans to resubmit it.

John Carreyrou and Christopher Weaver report that an FDA inspection found that, as part of a study to validate the new test, the company had collected some data without a patient safety plan in place that was approved by an institutional review board.

The role of the board is to make sure that ahead of the trial and during it, the subjects’ rights and welfare are protected, according to the FDA. It’s a standard part of running studies that involve humans.

In the case of the Theranos study, the Journal noted, “it isn’t clear if the problem affected any patients.”

Aug. 30 2016 5:35 PM

Apple to EU: You Can Have Taxes or You Can Have Jobs. Your Choice.

This post originally appeared on Business Insider.

Apple’s official statement on the EU ruling against its Irish tax arrangements tells you all you need to know about what is at stake: You can have taxes or you can have jobs, but Apple is in no mood to deliver both.

After learning on Tuesday morning that the EU expects Apple to pay 13 billion euros—equal to 11 billion pounds or $14.5 billion—in back taxes, the company said, “It will have a profound and harmful effect on investment and job creation in Europe.”

That is not a threat, technically, but it will be seen as one by EU politicians who want to attract new companies to their countries.

In 1991, Apple struck a tax deal with Ireland that was aboveboard and legal. The Irish government provided Apple with a “comfort letter” that said the company would pay very low rates of tax if it based its European operations in Ireland.