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Hey Steven- thanks for the post.

I’d also like to better understand the sustainability and growth prospects of Twinkies considering industry trends toward healthier snacks. Given such a great cost basis compared to current valuations, I’d be curious to know if the sponsors would consider reinvesting profits into a more diverse business model including similar sweet product lines and even healthy alternatives. Is there international receptivity to Twinkies in markets where healthy foods are not yet a prime focus? Are there other chemistry modifications that could actually make the product healthier? As the company stands today, the operating and business models are in sync, but considering an aging demographic and unfavorable trends, I have doubts about the long-term business strategy.

On December 14, 2015, KS commented on RadioShack: A Fallen Retail Giant :

Thanks Alula. As a child of the 90’s, I actually remember when RadioShack was relevant. RadioShack’s demise is linked to following their big box competitors off the “bloated real estate and showroom” cliff. With the increased capital investment limiting flexibility and low margin products, RadioShack could no longer afford to service their core customer. Their retail expansion should have been tempered to provide adequate payback periods on new locations. With such a large retail footprint, I thought RadioShack could have negotiated exclusive distribution deals with branded manufacturers to drive store visits and sales of RadioShack’s ancillary items. As Prime noted, the technology retailers have undergone significant changes and RadioShack’s business model simply did not evolve. Maybe RadioShack’s management should have spent more money on understanding customers and industry trends versus keeping up with Best Buy, which has a completely different business model and customer.

On December 14, 2015, KS commented on Whole Foods: Creating An Organic Experience :

Thanks Vicky- I love Whole Foods.

Although Whole Foods has differentiated themselves in the grocery ecosystem, I question their pricing strategy in light of competitors entering the organic food market. I think consumers will eventually turn to lower priced competitors for similar “organic” produce, especially in a stagnating or decelerating economy. However, as a WF shopper, I love their niche brands across grocery categories that aren’t available at larger grocery chains. As the company continues to grow, I would be curious to see how their product mix evolves. Whole Foods can further use it’s smaller size and decentralized operations strategy to outmaneuver the larger chains by introducing innovations in the grocery aisle.