Retail needs a reboot to survive

Although some believe the death of brick-and-mortar retail is inevitable, Mark Sigal, CPO of Unicorn Labs, thinks we all have a vested interest in seeing the industry reboot itself for the modern age. He outlines three paths for physical retail stores to avoid extinction here.

Fancy turns social discovery into social commerce

Fancy, a self-expression social site, is launching a new demand-driven commerce model today that will let vendors and retailers sign up to be a seller on any item fancied on the site. They will be able to conduct the transaction right on Fancy.

Ingk Labs buys payment platform ORCA to create PayPal rival

Exclusive: Ingk Labs, an IP accelerator in New York City, has purchased payment platform ORCA Inc. and will use it to power a new PayPal competitor called Payz. Ingk Labs is ramping its efforts to rescue and accelerate IP and put it to work in start-ups.

Who is Apple’s new retail boss, and what will he do?

Tim Cook has made his first major appointment at Apple — by handing over control of the company’s retail stores to a British businessman who has built his reputation largely through pile-em-high tactics and aggressive expansion.

Half of U.S. shoppers rely on phones for in-store research

The Pew Internet and American Life Project shed light on one of the biggest challenges for retailers: more than half of U.S. adult cell phone owners used their mobile phone during the recent holiday season to get in-store help for their purchases.

Home Depot looks to Silicon Valley for growth

Home Depot announced it has acquired online home services marketplace Redbeacon. Combined with Home Depot’s recent partnership with PayPal on its new in-store payment system, it’s another reminder that brick-and-mortar retailers are having to look to Silicon Valley for ways to get innovative.

4 startups that are taking the web from geek to chic

It’s been a long time coming, but the worlds of fashion and technology have finally begun to combine in a serious way. A new crop of companies is using the web to make the process more data-driven and social than ever before.

EBay, PayPal see a very mobile future

EBay’s mobile business is growing so fast, it doesn’t even know how to predict what to expect months into the future. It’s now predicting it will do $8 billion in gross merchandise value and PayPal will do $7 billion in mobile payment volume in 2012.

How PayPal plans to scale its in-store payment system

PayPal is taking a big step forward with its in-store payment system by partnering with AJB Software Designs, which helps connect the point of sale terminals at many top retailers to payment processors and financial institutions. AJB is in use by 20 percent of top retailers.

Donahoe to lead PayPal for now, maybe forever

PayPal president Scott Thompson’s departure for Yahoo highlights the changing face of eBay, which increasingly looks at PayPal as its crown jewel. And who better to safeguard that than eBay CEO John Donohoe, who has announced he will take over PayPal as interim president.