THINK Week in Review – The “Amazon/Whole Foods” Edition

Yes, Amazon acquired Whole Foods. Why? Whole Foods gives Amazon an immediate physical grocery footprint and the ability to alleviate some of the supply chain problems it faced with Amazon Fresh, including perishable inventory and delivery services. It also gives Amazon the ability to sell fresh and organic food on its online marketplace while at the same time giving shoppers the option to quickly pick up their online orders without having to schlep around the aisles. Ultimately, Amazon wants to make same-day delivery for groceries the norm, with Whole Foods stores serving as specialized fulfillment centers for Prime Now and Amazon Fresh. And there are other reasons: Why Amazon just made the biggest M-Commerce acquisition ever.  "Amazon's acquisition of Whole Foods, like Walmart's acquisition of Bonobos and Jet before that, might have been an interesting thought experiment in the desktop ecommerce days (and no doubt many investment bankers tried pitching them). But in the mobile era, where customers are using their smartphones to integrate digital and physical all the time, it's happening for real and retail will never be the same." Twelve forces that will radically change how organizations work. "These 12 trends are complex and interrelated. To cope with them, companies need a well-thought-out strategy that can translate into concrete interventions. Those that do not develop such a strategy may soon find themselves bumping up against nimbler rivals, unable to adapt to the disruption in time." And a great visualization of a Digitization Strategy Framework. AI can comb through your data to create more compelling customer experiences. "Artificial intelligence tools can help companies make better data decisions that improve the customer experience in real-time. And using data to drive more personalized customer experiences benefits customers and businesses alike." McKinsey: Scaling a transformative culture through a digital factory. "Building a digital culture might be the most difficult issue companies face. Using a “digital factory” is one way to get there." JP Morgan's massive guide to to machine learning and big data jobs in finance. "Analysts, portfolio managers, traders and chief investment officers all need to become familiar with machine learning techniques. If they don’t they’ll be left behind: traditional data sources like quarterly earnings and GDP figures will become increasingly irrelevant as managers using newer datasets and methods will be able to predict them in advance and to trade ahead of their release." Millennial Investors are not over the financial crisis. "A total of 83% of millennial investors cited that their decisions today were influenced in some manner by the financial crisis, compared to 65% of all investors surveyed (still a majority of the group, however)." How Wells Fargo's cutthroat corporate culture allegedly drove bankers to fraud. "Regardless of what happens, the story still tells an uncomfortable tale of how business, not just the business of banking, but all business, all too often works in the modern era. “I’m a notary,” Yesenia Guitron tells me. “I can only charge $10 for my services. But I’m told that, if I failed to take someone’s proper identification when I’m notarizing something for them, I could go to jail for 10 years.” How, she wonders, can you square the large consequences she’d have to face for a small misdeed for which she was paid a small amount with the small consequences for large-scale wrongdoing where the people in charge earned fortunes? The short answer is you can’t."