business news in context, analysis with attitude

With brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

•  Seeking Alpha reports that "The Fresh Market Holdings, Inc., parent company of The Fresh Market has confidentially submitted a draft registration statement on Form S-1 with the SEC relating to the proposed initial equity offering … The number of shares and the price range for the proposed offering have not yet been determined.  Proceeds will be used for general corporate purposes, which may include the repayment of indebtedness."

The Fresh Market is owned at the moment by Apollo Global Management, which bought it in 2016 from founders Ray and Beverly Berry.

•  Axios reports that in Colorado, a bill is in the legislative pipeline that would "ban restaurants and retailers from using single-use plastic bags and plastic foam containers.

"It would also give cities the power to set their own curbs — a particular pain point for opponents who argue the clause could create a confusing policy patchwork."

The story says that "an alternative bill, backed by the American Chemistry Council, came forward Thursday that would impose fees on the packaging producers of takeout food containers rather than mandate outright bans."

•  The Food Industry Association yesterday announced FMI’s first-ever Supply Chain Forum April 6-7, designed for mid-senior level supply chain professionals willing to learn and engage on a range of critical and timely topics across the industry. The online sessions will be brief and practical, building on a call to action to remove friction from the system while also building in additional resilience to meet future challenges head on. The timely event will also include a series of Solutions Spotlights to help attendees hear directly from solution providers with new or updated resources as well as Event Partner pages to interact directly with our event partners. "

For more information, click here.

•  CNet reports that "Starbucks on Monday rolled out a handful of announcements related to its accessibility efforts, including news that it'll now offer free access to Aira, a service that connects blind and low-vision people to remotely located agents who share visual information through an app. The service is available in all company-operated and licensed Starbucks stores in the US. 

"When a customer enters a Starbucks location, they can open up the Aira app, which is free to download for iOS and Android. They'll then be connected with someone who can see their surroundings through their phone's camera and provide needed descriptions, such as what's in a pastry case or what a sign says. "

•  CNBC reports that "Toys R Us has a new owner — again.

"The brand management company WHP Global announced Monday it has acquired a controlling interest in Tru Kids, the parent company of the Toys R Us, Babies R Us and Geoffrey the Giraffe brands."

“We’re in the brand business, and Toys R Us is the single most credible, trusted and beloved toy brand in the world,” says Yehuda Shmidman, chairman-CEO of WHP.  “We’re coming off a year where toys are just on fire. ... And for Toys R Us, the U.S. is really a blank canvas.”

The goal apparently, is to start opening stores.  Anyone else feel like we've already seen this movie and we know how it ends?