The beauty business turns to augmented reality

Beauty brands are hiring — or buying — technology companies that let customers virtually try on makeup, hair and skin care products.

Why it matters: With COVID keeping people away from cosmetics counters, the latest thing in “beauty tech” is the VTO — or virtual try-on. Customers love playing with these apps so much that companies see big revenue boosts after introducing them.

Driving the news: Hair, skin and makeup companies used to focus on acquiring smaller brands with cult followings, but now they’re also chasing AI and AR firms that can help them develop personalized customer experiences.

  • L’Oreal led the charge by buying ModiFace, an AR specialist, in 2018 and using its patents “to create a number of virtual try-on tools that consumers can experiment with across a number of their brands,” Vogue Business reports.
  • L’Oreal has its own technology incubator with a team of 30+ physicists, engineers,
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Tucker Carlson Interviews Oath Keeper Who Aided the Insurrection

  • Tucker Carlson has interviewed Thomas Caldwell three times since January 6.
  • Caldwell has been indicted on charges of seditious conspiracy and faces up to 20 years in prison.
  • Caldwell organized the Oath Keepers’ quick reaction force teams, according to an unsealed indictment.

Since the Capitol insurrection, Fox News commentator Tucker Carlson has repeatedly interviewed Thomas Caldwell, who was indicted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Thursday on charges of seditious conspiracy for his role in coordinating the Oath Keepers’ attack, Media Matters reported.

Caldwell first joined “Tucker Carlson Tonight” in October 2021. During his appearance, he said he never entered the Capitol and was not part of the Oath Keepers, a far-right, anti-government paramilitary organization, according to Media Matters.

An FBI affidavit from January 2021 revealed the extent of Caldwell’s participation in the insurrection through records collected from his Facebook account.


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U.S. Businesses Sour on Saudi Arabia in Blow to Crown Prince’s Growth Plans

RIYADH—Saudi Arabia courted the world’s top companies to modernize its economy. Instead, the business environment has grown more hostile and investors are souring on the oil-rich kingdom.

Construction company Bechtel Corp. sent some contractors home while it tried to collect on more than $1 billion in unpaid bills.

Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.

BMY 0.51%


Gilead Sciences Inc.

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and other drugmakers have complained unsuccessfully for years that their intellectual property was being stolen.

The result is foreign investment in Saudi Arabia has remained stubbornly low and some companies are scaling back their operations or delaying promised expansion plans.

That is a blow to Crown Prince

Mohammed bin Salman,

the country’s de facto leader. He vowed in 2016 to build new industries unrelated to oil by improving the business climate and creating a global hub for innovation. Since then, reducing Saudi Arabia’s dependence on oil has grown increasingly urgent as

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Job Openings Report Shows Record Number of Workers Quit in November

There are signs that the worst of the turbulence was beginning to ease late last year. The number of job openings posted by employers fell in November, the Labor Department said Tuesday, though it remained high by historical standards. Hiring picked up, too. Earlier data showed that more people returned to the labor force in November, and various measures of supply-chain pressures have begun to ease.

But that was before the explosion in coronavirus cases linked to the Omicron variant, which has forced airlines to cancel flights, businesses to delay return-to-office plans and school districts to return temporarily to remote learning. Forecasters say the latest Covid-19 wave is all but certain to prolong the economic uncertainty, though it is too soon to say how it will affect inflation, spending or the job market.

Despite the demand for workers and the pay increases landed by some, Americans are pessimistic about the

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Will the cloud business eat the 5G telecoms industry?

SMARTPHONES ABLE to take advantage of zippy fifth-generation (5G) mobile telephony have graced American pockets since 2019. Samsung launched its first 5G-enabled device in April that year. Apple followed suit in late 2020 with its long-awaited 5G iPhone. Until now, however, actual 5G coverage in America has been limited. The country’s three biggest carriers, AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile, have offered 5G connectivity but in practice this differed little from the earlier 4G. AT&T and Verizon had to delay their large-scale roll-outs of something closer to the hype in December after the Federal Aviation Administration aired concerns that their 5G radio spectrum interferes with avionics on some ageing aircraft. On January 3rd both firms, which insist that the technology is safe (and can be turned off around airports, just

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Dallas rebranding Valley View mall area to attract global business, residents

Dallas is rebranding a 440-acre area that includes the Galleria and demolished Valley View mall as the International District.

It’s the latest step in a long-planned redevelopment of the North Dallas area that officials now say will become the city’s cultural hub and attract new global businesses.

The estimated $4 billion redevelopment project has been discussed since 2011, and a plan was formally approved by the City Council two years later. The goal is to turn the area north of Interstate 635 between Dallas North Tollway and Preston Road into a mixed-use walkable neighborhood. It will include a 20-acre park, 10,000 new homes, restaurant, arts and entertainment venues, and eventually a DART light rail connection.

A new Dallas ISD school and centers dedicated to helping businesses could also come to the area. The city is looking to get local developers, businesses and private partners to help pay for the project.

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Fanatics buying iconic Topps card business for $500 million

Trading card giant Topps — just a few months after losing out on a deal to renew its longtime licensing deal with Major League Baseball to sports apparel startup Fanatics — is now selling its collectibles and cards business to … Fanatics.

Sources close to the deal told CNN Business that Fanatics was paying $500 million for the more than 80-year-old Topps, which started out as a chewing gum company in 1938 and began selling baseball cards in 1951.

Fanatics had been set to become the exclusive trading cards licensee for MLB in 2025, when Topps’ deal with the league was set to expire. But Fanatics said Tuesday that as a result of the Topps acquisition, it will immediately begin to design, manufacture and distribute baseball cards.

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There’s a new tax rule for US small business owners. What to make of it? | US small business

A new tax rule will impact millions of small businesses in 2022. You can thank one small change buried in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

Let’s suppose you’re a small business owner or freelancer, and you get paid from a digital payment service like PayPal, Venmo, Zelle, Cash App or any third-party settlement provider that’s accepting credit cards on your behalf and putting money into your bank account. If those payments were for goods and services that you sold to customers, it was previously up to you to make sure you were reporting that income on your tax return. But now, beginning in 2022, if you receive more than $600 in total during the course of the year – regardless of how many customers are paying – your payment service is required to report that amount to the IRS.

Let’s be clear: you should

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DNC Staff Unionize, With 67% of Eligible Staff Signing Cards

  • Staff at the Democratic National Committee chose to unionize on Tuesday.
  • 67% of eligible staff signed union cards, meaning their union is official.
  • The DNC has publicly welcomed the vote.

Employees at the Democratic National Committee chose to unionize on Tuesday, with two-thirds of the eligible staff signing union cards to make the vote official.

The DNC staff’s decision to unionize with Service Employees International Union Local 500 marks perhaps the most significant organizing effort in politics yet. As the Democratic Party’s main organizing apparatus, its decisions can help set the tone for political campaigns, private firms, and other party workforces to follow suit.

“Throughout this process, our aim has been not only to improve the lives of current and future staff at the DNC, but to ensure our staff, no matter where they live, are protected and given the resources they need to thrive in

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Without employees in office, surrounding businesses struggle

This first week in January was supposed to be the week many New Yorkers returned to the office. But with the surge in COVID-19 cases, many of those returns have been pushed back, yet again. 

It’s just one more blow to restaurants and small businesses who rely on those employees for the business. 

What You Need To Know

  • For decades, Forlini’s Restaurant has been serving up lunch to the judges, lawyers, clerks, etc. who work in Lower Manhattan’s courthouses
  • Without them in court, traffic at Forlini’s has slowed
  • Owner Derek Forlini says pre-pandemic, he used to serve between 130 and 150 customers for lunch. Now, he says he’s happy if he has 30 diners during lunchtime
  • Mayor Adams called on businesses working remotely to get back into the office, even if just two or three days a week

Forlini’s Restaurant has been a staple in Lower Manhattan for decades. 


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