Posts tagged with "Statista"

American Express to acquire Resy, a restaurant reservation platform

May 16, 2019

A scion of an industry that started out in 1950 with the Diners Club charge card has come full circle—linking with a restaurant booking platform to capitalize on the nearly $800 billion in sales that America’s 660,755 restaurants rake in annually, according to Statista.

New York City-based American Express announced on March 15 that the company has signed an agreement to acquire Resy, a digital restaurant reservation booking and management platform founded in 2014.

AmEx comments, “The acquisition will build on the growing suite of digital-first benefits and services from American Express that extend beyond traditional rewards and points, to provide card members with access and experiences across travel and lodging, airport lounges, exclusive events, and dining.”

. Focused primarily in the U.S. but with locations in the UK, Europe, Canada and Australia, Resy currently works with approximately 4,000 restaurants in 154 U.S. cities and ten countries— seating more than 2.6 million diners a week. The acquisition is expected to be completed in summer 2019 and builds on a number of recent acquisitions made by American Express in the dining, travel and lifestyle space that are part of the company’s strategy.

“Resy was created to both connect people who love dining out with new, notable, and hard-to-get-into restaurants across the globe, as well as help restaurants’ businesses grow and thrive. Similarly, American Express has strong relationships with premium dining partners and restaurants across the globe, and provides our card members with access to incredible dining experiences through our exclusive benefits and programs,” said Chris Cracchiolo, SVP, Global Loyalty and Benefits, American Express. “We look forward to working with the Resy team to continue to grow the Resy digital platform, and develop new ways to further connect our Card Members and restaurant partners through unique access and experiences.”

 “There are myriad points of synergy between Resy and American Express that we look forward to pursuing together in the name of creating an end-to-end global dining platform that thrills both diners and restaurants alike. As it does today, Resy will continue to focus on delivering world-class hospitality software to our amazing restaurant partners, connecting diners to insider experiences, and reimagining the future of dining,” said Resy’s co-founder and CEO, Ben Leventhal.

In line with this news, American Express is working with recently acquired companies—personal travel assistant app Mezi, UK dining reservation platform Cake Technologies, airport lounge discovery and booking platform LoungeBuddy, and Japanese premium restaurant reservation platform Pocket Concierge—to develop a suite of new digital capabilities that will provide unique digital services, experiences, and access for American Express customers.

After the acquisition, the Resy brand and digital platform will continue to be led and operated by its co-founder and CEO, Ben Leventhal. Resy’s co-founder and CTO, Michael Montero, also remain in place.

Research contact: @AmerianExpress

When it comes to exercise, most U.S. adults are going it alone

September 10, 2018

The United States has more gyms, health clubs, and fitness centers than any other nation—about 36,500, according to Statista; with about 30,000 that are membership-based and about 57 million U.S. adults opting to join up between 2000 and 2016.

However, when it comes to exercise, a poll posted on Civic Science has found, most Americans prefer to sweat it out solo. In fact, nearly half of U.S. adults—47%, to be exact—prefer to work out alone. And those who work out alone also tend to work out the most—indicating that they get moving several times a week

Only 12% of respondents said they prefer to have an exercise buddy; while personal training and group fitness classes are the least popular—both cited as a top choice by just 3% of participating adults. And fully 35% admit that they rarely or never work out. With numbers like these, it’s a wonder boutique studios and fitness centers are able to keep their doors open. Nevertheless, they persist.

Across the generations, who is more likely to do what? When it comes to working out with a friend, 50% of responders are Millennials, while 48% of those who prefer group fitness classes are from Generation X. As for those who rarely or never work out, it’s no surprise that 45% are Baby Boomers.

Research contact: laurnie@civicscience.com

What’s your poison? It could be coconut oil.

August 23, 2018

We are what we eat—which is why the conflicting news we receive on a regular basis about nutrition is making it increasingly difficult to decide which foodstuffs are beneficial and which are just plain bad.

 Now, coconuts—and specifically, coconut oil—which once were recommended as a “superfood’ and a remedy for everything from gum disease to Alzheimer’s, are being reviled. Both the American Heart Association and a professor at the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health are saying that the oil is high-fat and high-risk.

Indeed, Karin Michels, the director of the Institute for Prevention and Tumor Epidemiology at the University of Freiburg in Germany and a professor at the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has caused a bit of a stir online. In a lecture posted on YouTube that has gotten nearly one million hits, Michels calls coconut oil “pure poison” and identifies it as “one of the worst foods you can eat,” Business Insider reported on August 20.

Her 50-minute German-language lecture, entitled Coconut Oil and other Nutritional Errors, has become a viral hit .

There’s no study showing significant health benefits to coconut-oil consumption. And, according to Michels, coconut oil is more dangerous than lard because it almost exclusively contains saturated fatty acids—ones that can clog the coronary arteries, Business Insider reported.

Based on the fact that they contain a lot of unsaturated fatty acids, experts recommend olive or rapeseed oil as an alternative, and while it can’t be used for cooking, flaxseed oil is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and is just as good for the body.

While Michels doesn’t describe other superfoods like acai, chia seeds, or matcha as harmful, at most she considers them ineffective because, in most cases, the nutrients they’re touted for are available just as readily in other foods that are more easily accessible such as carrots, cherries, and apricots.

“We are well and sufficiently supplied,” she said.

According to Statista, Americans consumers 443 tons of coconut oil during 2017. The global production volume of coconut oil was 376 million tons.

Research contact: k.michels@ucla.edu

Bloated and confused? Probiotics could be the culprit!

August 10, 2018

Probiotics—live bacteria and yeasts that purportedly are good for your digestive system and immune response—have become a multi-billion-dollar business. In 2017, the global market for pills, powders, and yogurts packed with probiotics was about $46 billion, according to Statista. By 2022, experts forecast that the “digestive health, immunity, and probiotics” category of consumer products will exceed $64 billion, according to a report in the August issue of Psychology Today.

Marketers claim that they will optimize our overall health by increasing the “good” bacteria in our guts. However, researchers increasingly are finding that, although these products are generally safe, “too much of a good thing” can have unexpected repercussions.

Specifically, findings of a study conducted by researchers at the Medical College of Georgia (published in June by the journal, Clinical and Translational Gastroenterology) indicate that probiotic use can result in a significant accumulation of bacteria in the small intestine that can result in disorienting brain fogginess as well as rapid, significant belly bloating.

Out of 38 patients who agreed to participate in the study, 30 reported problems such as confusion and difficulty concentrating, in addition to gas and bloating. All subjects were taking probiotics—some of them, several varieties.

When investigators looked further, they found large colonies of bacteria breeding in the patients’ small intestines, and high levels of D-lactic acid being produced by the bacteria lactobacillus’ fermentation of sugars in their food, says lead author Dr. Satish S.C. Rao, director of Neurogastroenterology/Motility and the Digestive Health Clinical Research Center at the college.

Indeed, D-lactic acid is known to be temporarily toxic to brain cells, interfering with cognition, thinking, and sense of time.  They found some patients had two to three times the normal amount of D-lactic acid in their blood.

According to the authors, “Brain Fogginess (BF) describes a constellation of symptoms [comprising] mental confusion, impaired judgment, poor short-term memory, and difficulty with concentration, which is often transient and disabling.” Some study participants said that their brain fogginess—which lasted from a half hour to many hours after eating—had been so severe that they had to quit their jobs.

The published report appears to be the first time the connection has been made between brain fogginess, bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine, high levels of D-lactic acid in the gut, and probiotic use, Rao says. .” Notably, the researchers found that over two-thirds of patients with brain fogginess who were taking probiotics demonstrated D-lactic acidosis and a higher prevalence of small intestine bacterial overgrowth.

“What we now know is that probiotic bacteria have the unique capacity to break down sugar and produce D-lactic acid. So if you inadvertently colonize your small bowel with probiotic bacteria, then you have set the stage for potentially developing lactic acidosis and brain fogginess,” Rao says.

In some people, for reasons that are not understood, probiotics appear to cause bacterium lactobacillus to go into a feeding frenzy. This leads to the rapid fermentation of sugars, which results in the production of belly-bloating methane and hydrogen gas. According to the researchers, the excessive amounts of D-lactic acid being produced in the small intestine is absorbed into the blood and can travel to the brain—temporarily interfering with cognitive functions..

Although this study is a first step towards understanding a possible link between probiotic use and brain fogginess, more research is needed. The authors acknowledge that this pioneering research has some significant shortcomings, including a small sample size.

Many individuals randomly self prescribe over-the-counter probiotics and eat these chewables like candy. Although probiotics can be beneficial in some situations, the investigators warn consumers to avoid excessive and indiscriminate use of probiotic supplements. “Probiotics should be treated as a drug, not as a food supplement,” Rao concluded.

Research contact: mediarelations@augusta.edu

Target and Walmart just want to toy with you

June 8, 2018

American families spend more than twice as much on toys as households in any other nation worldwide, according to Statista—buying about $25.5. billion in doodads in 2015, alone; compared to second-place China ($9.5 billion). So, now that the  top U.S. toy chain, Toys ‘R’ Us, has shut its doors, the company is leaving a huge amount of retail business on the table ($11.5 billion in sales in its last full year of business).

Based on a June 4 report by Supply Chain Dive, other retailers—chief among them, Target and Walmart— are racing to fill that void before holiday sales begin. Both brands are adopting larger strategies —among them, website redesigns and new acquisitions to expand delivery capabilities. That also includes ensuring the proper amount of toys are on the shelf, as new consumers look online to fill the gap.

“Toy volume is up for grabs,” Walmart’s Chief Merchandising Officer Steve Bratspies said at the company’s annual shareholder meeting, according to Internet Retailer.

Target EVP and COO John Mulligan agreed during an earnings call, saying, “Our teams in toys and baby have increased their inventory investment to ensure that we can meet higher demand as other competitors liquidate and exit these categories.”

Indeed, industry players believe that the toy sector is strong—and that the bankruptcy in which Toys ‘R” Us finds itself was caused by bad management. When Supply Chain Dive recently asked its audience— executives in supply chain, logistics, and fulfillment that make important purchasing decisions for their organizations—who was to blame for the company’s financial downfall, fully 69% of 104 respondents said the bankruptcy was single-handedly caused by Toy’R’ Us.

In addition, some respondents emailed the news outlet to say it was not suppliers, or even online behemoth Amazon, specifically, that led to the retailers’ downfall, but competition in the space for Target and Walmart.

In fact, in a recent earnings call, Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner acknowledged that its network had grown over the past three years, to include a significant digital presence and 21,000 more retail stores despite “recent store closures at traditional retailers.”

“There’s a tremendous amount of disruption occurring across the retail landscape,” Target said in a statement provided to Supply Chain Dive.  “We will continue to invest to create an even b Target and are prepared to welcome new guests to shop with us at our stores and online at Target.com.”

Research contact: @EdwinLopezT37

America will need close to 1M drivers in order to ‘keep on trucking’

May 7, 2018

You know all of those online purchases that are delivered to your driveway or doorway? Most of those goodies—70%, according to the American Trucking Associations—are brought to you by drivers who hit the hardtop in their semitrailers and vans nationwide after you hit “buy now” on your keyboard.

What’s more, the number of deliveries from online vendors is only going up: In 2016, 209.6 million of U.S. shoppers went online for their transactions at least once, based on data provided by Statista. These figures are projected to reach 230.5 million in 2021—positioning the United States as of one the leading e-commerce markets based on online shopper penetration.

What that means, according to a report released on May 4 by CNBC, is that, within ten years, America will need about 890,000 more truck drivers in order to keep pace with growth and demand for freight transportation.

Americans are used to getting what they want with the click of a button, but this expectation of door-to-door service will be increasingly difficult to fulfill if we can’t get more drivers behind the wheel.

At a time when (despite low unemployment) many Americans are still experiencing great difficulty finding high-paying full-time positions that provide the added security of benefits, the transportation sector offers an attractive solution.

According to ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello, the truck driver shortage currently stands at roughly 50,000 drivers—a figure that could balloon to 174,000 by 2026.

However, limits on younger commercial drivers are creating unforeseen bumps in the road the industry is having a hard time overcoming. While virtually all states allow individuals to obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL) at the age of 18, these drivers are prohibited from operating in interstate commerce until they are 21.

A significant challenge to the industry is recruiting young talent to replace an aging workforce. Retirements now account for 49% percent of drivers who must be replaced, and by delaying an individual’s eligibility to be an interstate driver, trucking is at a significant disadvantage in attracting young people.

The ATA is now working to change those laws, so that young drivers can start right out of high school. In addition, Costello says, ““While the shortage is a persistent issue in our industry, motor carriers are constantly working to address it,” he said. “We already see fleets raising pay and offering other incentives to attract drivers. Fleets are also doing more to improve the lifestyle and image of the truck driver, but there are also policy changes like reducing the driver age as part of a graduated licensing system, or easing the transition for returning veterans, that can make getting into this industry easier and therefore help with the shortage.”

Research contact: smcnally@trucking.org

Silly searches ruled the Internet in 2017

January 16, 2018

What are Americans searching for? Money, health, world peace—or is it just a Unicorn mention on Google?

As of April 2017, Google had processed 9.61 billion search queries during the past 12 months, accounting for 63.4% of the U.S. desktop search market—and topping Microsoft Sites (3.7 billion), Yahoo Sites (1.9 billion) and the Ask Network (0.37 billion), according to a report by Statista.

When the Google Keyword Team looked at full results for the year on December 29, they found a motley assortment of searches—none of them related to top U.S. news stories such as President Donald Trump, healthcare, North Korea or immigration.

Indeed, the leading Google searches for the year were driven by quirky and trending interests—among them:

  • Unicorns: “While we may have reached ‘peak Unicorn’ with Starbucks’ Unicorn Frappuccino, the craze didn’t stop there,” said Alicia Cormie, a staff writer on the Google Keyword Team. Others in the food industry capitalized on the trend by offering other unicorn-family foods—unicorn hot chocolate, unicorn cheesecake and unicorn lemonade. While this colorful trend spanned the globe, the most searches came from the cities of San Francisco, New York, London and Bengaluru. Those who jumped on the unicorn food train were likely responsible for making “How many calories are in a Unicorn Frappuccino?” the number one trending calorie-related query.
  • Slime: Slime also had a very big year: “How to make slime?” was the number one globally trending “how- to question of 2017. Searchers wanted to know how to make slime of all types: fluffy, butter, stretchy, jiggly, cloud, clear and glow-in-the-dark. But as the slimy obsession grew, so did its mess. “How to get slime out of carpet?” made its way to one of the 100 globally trending “how to” questions of the year.
  •  Animal attraction: Streaming zoo videos were all the rage. This year’s most searched celebrity animal was April, the mama giraffe that gained worldwide fame after a live video stream of her pregnancy. April’s moment in the spotlight had the question “How long are giraffes pregnant for?” trending in Alaska. Next up in top-searched celebrity animals was Fiona, the premature baby hippo, followed by Marnie, the Instagram-famous senior rescue dog.
  • Meme, myself and I: From a dancing hot dog to a distracted boyfriend, viral images brought comic relief, heavy doses of sarcasm and unending creativity to the Internet. According to search data, the five most trending memes of 2017 were: “Cash Me Outside,” “United Airlines,” “Elf on the Shelf,” “What in Tarnation?” and “Mocking SpongeBob” as people sought to get in on the joke.
  • Say what?: Finally, Americans also used searches to quickly decode the latest slang. Trending acronyms this year included WCW (woman crush Wednesday), TFW (that feeling when), STG (swear to God), GOAT (greatest of all time), and OFC (of course). And from “What does despacito mean?” to “What does bodak yellow mean?” to “What does bibia be ye ye mean?”, we searched for the meanings of popular songs—then got back to the dance floor.

Be on the lookout: This year is bound to bring a new batch of screwy searches.

Research contact: @aliciajean

Tattoo You?

November 14, 2017

Nearly 40% of Americans born after 1980 have a tattoo—and 25% have a piercing some place other than an earlobe, Pew Research found in a recent study.

Indeed, according to Statista Survey, which also has looked at the body art phenomenon, only 39% of Americans are on the non-inked side of the fence.

Of those who say they have not gotten a tattoo yet, but are considering one, Statista says that the most common reason for hesitating is apprehension about the pain involved, followed by another anxiety— fear of falling out of love with the tattoo as they age.

At the top of the list of reasons for getting one was “to express my style and opinion” (38%). In second place was the similar, “to express my personal opinion” (37%). Making up the top three, family makes its way into the picture, with 34% saying their tattoo pays tribute to their children.

What’s more,  some want an even more radical body marking, using a number of, ahem, “cutting-edge” ways to express themselves, the Pew researchers report—including branding, scarification (scratching, etching or cutting to produce a design in the skin), or subdural implants (placing objects under the skin for ornamentation).

Nearly every state has some type of body art law, but regulations vary widely. Most states do agree on one thing: age limits. At least 45 states prohibit minors from getting tattoos, and 38 states prohibit body piercing and tattooing minors without parental permission, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

The sharp increase in Hepatitis C cases over the last few years has intensified states’ concern about sterile and sanitized needles and equipment and associated health and safety training.

The American Red Cross requires someone who has had a tattoo to wait one year to donate blood if the tattoo was applied in a state that does not regulate tattoo facilities — Georgia, Idaho, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Utah, Wyoming, and the District of Columbia. No waiting period is required if the tattoo was applied in a state that requires tattoo shops to use sterile needles and single-use ink.

Finally, are body art fans welcomed in the workplace? Not always, but Skinfo.com published a list last year of the companies who would welcome inked employees—among them, Whole Foods,Sally’s Beauty Supply, Trader Joe’s, Burlington Coat Factory, Ikea, Forever 21, Staples, Best Buy, Home Depot and Lowe’s.

Research contact: info@pewresearch.org