Antitrust regulators approved Amazon's planned $13.7 billion acquisition of Whole Foods shortly after the grocer's shareholders voted to approve the deal.The shareholders met at the grocery chain’s headquarters in Austin, Tex., early on Wednesday, and later that day, the Federal Trade Commission's acting director of its competition bureau, Bruce Hoffman, effectively approved the deal by ending a cursory investigation into any antitrust implications."Based on our investigation we have decided not to pursue this matter further,"Hoffman said. "Of course, the FTC always has the ability to investigate anticompetitive conduct should such action be warranted.”Even though the transaction itself doesn’t raise obvious antitrust red flags, there have been growing concerns over what effect the merger might have on other grocery stores.The current plan is for completion of the transaction by the end of 2017. The deal is still subject to other customary closing conditions.Amazon said in June that it would pay $42 a share in an all-cash deal that includes Whole Foods’ debt. The grocery chain, which has sales of $16 billion, has 460 stores across the U.S., Canada and the U.K. Employees total 87,000 in number.When the proposed transaction was announced on June 16, Whole Foods cofounder and chief executive officer John Mackey said, “This partnership presents an opportunity to maximize value for Whole Foods Market’s shareholders, while at the same time extending our mission and bringing the highest quality, experience, convenience and innovation to our customers.”Mackey is slated to continue as ceo of the grocery chain, and its headquarters is expected to remain in Austin.Amazon has been expanding into different categories. It recently launched its own private-label brands, has inked deals with big names such as Nike and set up a box delivery program called Prime Wardrobe.The e-commerce market platform hasn’t had much success in the grocery business. The thinking among some is that Amazon could use some of the space in Whole Foods to provide space for either showcasing select items available at Amazon.com or for pick-up to help expand its same-day delivery distribution network. Others think Amazon might leave the business as is for now as it learns from Whole Foods how it manages day-to-day operations in a brick-and-mortar setting.
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion (📷: Dominique Maître)
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
Not only does #TheProfit return to CNBC tonight, but @marcuslemonis has launched @shopmarcus, a new shopping and lifestyle retail experience in Aspen and Chicago, with more locations to come. The retail stores offer in-store stylists and a variety of contemporary womenswear selections.
“It’s life, I’m going to face it,” @mingxi11 sighed. “I fell, but you know, I think the most important thing is that I get back up. I had the love, the help from my sister — the girl next to me Gizele [Oliveira] — she’s so nice. When I went backstage everybody was trying to comfort me like ‘Oh Ming, it’s OK.’ I’m really, really touched. I think it’s them who gave me the courage to go back on stage for the finale,” Xi told WWD of her fall at the @victoriassecret fashion show. (📷: David Fisher) #wwdfashion #vsfashionshow #victoriassecret
@louisvuitton tapped @therealpeterlindbergh for its latest city-centric photo book, which is part of a series called Fashion Eye. The primarily black and white book captures the spirit of Berlin in 57 images shot between 1989 and 2019. “Berlin is an inspiration for me, more than a city. I mean @millajovovich is simply Berlin!” said Lindbergh. #wwdfashion
“You know, I think audiences expect a certain performance so I have to deliver to them what they’re expecting to a certain degree. But I’m also a different actor and a different person, I have my own spin on the character,” says @noahegalvin of his takeover of the leading role in “Dear Evan Hansen” following the departure of @bensplatt, who originated the role. Read WWD’s interview with the 23-year-old actor on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
For pre-fall 2018, @etro created richly-colored wonderland, using tapestries, textiles and wallpapers from the Eastern world at large. The line featured floral and graphic prints and jacquard motifs, like this two-piece look featured here. #wwdfashion (📷: Giovanna Pavesi)
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)