Brief (and Limited) Reality Check

There's a lot of bluster in the restructuring community about Amazon, e-commerce and the death of brick-and-mortar retail. It's hard not to be sanguine about the future of retail when the bankruptcy roll is littered with names like General Wireless Operations, hhgregg Inc., Gander Mountain Co., Gordmans Stores Inc., and Vanity Shop of Grand Forks Inc. - and those are just the filings that have occurred in March.

In the interest of completeness, though, there is SOME nuance here and that nuance largely depends on socioeconomic and geographic considerations. This Washington Post story features interesting data about the adoption of e-commerce and while it has grown in nearly every state, there are some states that have been very slow to adopt it, e.g., Idaho, South Dakota, Colorado, Arkansas and Arizona. The macro trend remains the obvious, of course, but we thought this was worth noting. Sometimes it's erroneous to paint with too broad a brush.