business news in context, analysis with attitude

With brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

•  GeekWire reports that "Amazon is closing an Amazon Fresh Pickup location in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood, signaling another move by the tech giant to pull back on brick-and-mortar operations."

The location is one of two that Amazon opened back in 2017 - the other was in the parking lot of Starbucks headquarters in the SoDo neighborhood -  in an effort to make it easier for shoppers to pick up online orders.

I'm not sure it is fair to suggest that this reflects a move away from bricks-and-mortar.  In fact, Amazon has far more physical locations now than it did when it opened these, with far more options for shoppers.  It strikes me as more likely that these two operations were seen as redundant, and likely were little used.

•  The Information reports that "Twitter’s ad business is not recovering.

"Clients of WPP-owned GroupM, the world’s largest ad-buying firm, have cut their spending on Twitter by between 40% and 50% since Elon Musk took control of the company in late October, according to people familiar with the matter. Standard Media Index, an ad industry firm that tracks spending by nearly all national advertisers, says it is seeing a smaller amount of forward bookings for Twitter for this month and February compared to past years.

"Meanwhile, there are signs that Elon Musk’s cost cutting is undermining Twitter’s ability to turn around its ad business, while the company’s outreach to marketers is further alienating ad executives. Last month, for instance, ad executives meeting with Twitter ad sales representatives were told they had to become comfortable with Musk’s unpredictability and uncertainty, according to two people with direct knowledge of the conversations. But controversy and uncertainty are anathema to many big advertisers, which prefer predictability, including knowing where their ads run and what type of content they’ll appear next to. Asking advertisers to radically change their behavior is simply not a viable option, according to ad executives. The argument from Twitter's ad executives failed to persuade marketers to resume advertising."

No surprise here.  This is what happens when you hand management of a company like Twitter to someone with the emotional maturity and impulse control of a third grader on a sugar high.