Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Business

Minions, Miley Cyrus to dominate Halloween costume spending

Minions and Miley. Expect to see a lot of them on Halloween, based on what people are searching for online.

Experian Marketing Services, which helps companies maximize their marketing efforts, sampled 10 million Internet users nationwide to find out what they were pairing with the term "costume'' on Google, Yahoo, Bing and other search engines. M and M came in big, as did Minnie Mouse, zombies and "stick figure,'' which refers not necessarily to a costume but to a YouTube video that went viral last week of a kid in a lit-up stick figure costume.

The results don't really surprise. Both kids and adults fell in love again with the cute, goggled minions when Despicable Me 2 came out in July. And who didn't have something to say about twerking former Disney star Miley Cyrus?

The National Retail Federation expects that people will spend $2.6 billion on Halloween costumes this year, more than on any other item, including candy and decorations. And don't forget the four-legged friends. About $330 million of the total costume spending will go toward turning Fido into a devil and Morris into a pumpkin.

Overall, spending for the holiday is expected to reach $6.9 billion this year, according to the Halloween Consumer Spending Survey done for the national retail group by Prospect Insights & Analytics. That's a nearly 55 percent increase since 2005, when, by most accounts, Halloween was pretty big, too.

Particularly of note is where people find inspiration for their costumes. Gone are the days when everyone would cram into Party City or a popup Halloween store. According to the survey, just as many shoppers (33 percent) get ideas online as they do from stores. About 20 percent ask friends or family for ideas, 14 percent check Facebook and a few read blogs.

Bill Tancer, general manager of global research for Experian, said the company starts looking at Halloween trends in late August to help its retail clients know what to stock and promote. Some things never go out of style (pirates and princesses), but plenty of things do. Maybe Cyrus' twerking teddy outfit will be just a memory next year.

World of Beer opened its 50th location on Monday, at 6878 Providence Lakes Blvd. in Brandon. That's as many bars as the new location has beer taps.

The Tampa-based tavern started in 2007 as a neighborhood bar in Westchase and has expanded to 16 states. Fourteen locations have opened in the past year, with others to follow in Seattle, Syracuse, N.Y., and Santan, Ariz.

The Brandon location has 500 kinds of bottled beer, craft spirits, and food that complements the drinks, from German pretzels and brat sliders to salads and sandwiches. It opens daily at 11 a.m.

Speaking of a local chain on a growth spurt, Bonefish Grill is opening nine locations nationwide in the next three months, including the restaurant's first two in California, making it coast to coast.

Bonefish is part of Bloomin' Brands, a Tampa-based company that also owns Outback Steakhouse, Carrabba's Italian Grill, Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar and Roy's. Bonefish has 190 restaurants in 32 states. In addition to California, the other new locations are in Virginia, Colorado, Michigan, Massachusetts, North Carolina and New Jersey.

Susan Thurston can be reached at [email protected] or (813) 225-3110. Follow @susan_thurston on Twitter.

Comments
Flipping homes for big profits is getting harder in Tampa Bay

Flipping homes for big profits is getting harder in Tampa Bay

Michael Sadeghpour was just 18 when he did his first flip.Using money saved from a job and borrowed from his grandmother, he bought a foreclosed condo in north Pinellas County for $67,000. He did some inexpensive renovations and flipped it for $125,0...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Wee Gallery entrepreneurs turned black-and-white baby mural into thriving business

Wee Gallery entrepreneurs turned black-and-white baby mural into thriving business

When Surya Sajnani and Dave Pinto were expecting their first child in 2002, she painted a mural with black and white zebras on one wall of the nursery. The couple had read that a baby’s eyes are stimulated by repeating patterns of black and white. "I...
Published: 12/13/17
Career Q&A: Two bosses who don’t care for each other

Career Q&A: Two bosses who don’t care for each other

Q: I seem to be caught between two high-level managers who really don’t like each other. One is a director, the other is a vice president, and I am an assistant to both. Whenever the director stops by my desk to chat, she makes critical remarks about...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Nicko’s Fine Foods, classic diner and Seminole Heights icon, closes after six decades

Nicko’s Fine Foods, classic diner and Seminole Heights icon, closes after six decades

Nicko’s Fine Foods, known as the place Elvis Presley ate following a 1956 concert and Tampa’s last classic prefabricated diner, has shut down after more than 60 years in business.Owners Karen and Nicholas Liakos could not be reached for comment, but ...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Ex-Facebook VP: Social media destroying society with ‘dopamine-driven feedback loops’

Ex-Facebook VP: Social media destroying society with ‘dopamine-driven feedback loops’

Washington PostA former Facebook executive is making waves after he spoke out about his "tremendous guilt" over growing the social network, which he feels has eroded "the core foundations of how people behave by and between each other."Chamath Paliha...
Published: 12/12/17
Illegal card skimmer discoveries in Tampa Bay double in 2017

Illegal card skimmer discoveries in Tampa Bay double in 2017

State investigators have discovered more than double the number of credit card skimmers in the Tampa Bay area in 2017 than in 2016 — with still a few weeks left in the year. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services found 54 skimmer...
Published: 12/12/17
French group to take over Westfield malls for $15.7 billion

French group to take over Westfield malls for $15.7 billion

Three Tampa Bay malls may soon be under new management. French real estate company Unibail-Rodamco has agreed to buy Australia-based shopping mall operator Westfield Corp. for $15.7 billion in cash and shares."Westfield would arguably be the best or ...
Published: 12/12/17
Tampa Bay’s mortgage delinquency rate crept up in September

Tampa Bay’s mortgage delinquency rate crept up in September

Times Staff WriterThe percentage of Tampa Bay homeowners who are late on their mortgage payments rose slightly in September, probably due to Hurricane Irma. According to CoreLogic, 7 percent of bay area mortgages were delinquent by at least 30 days c...
Published: 12/12/17
Unusual paddle design earns worldwide market

Unusual paddle design earns worldwide market

Paddling on the heels of the last supermoon of 2017, Phil Hughes navigated an uncommonly low tide off Dunedin through St. Joseph Sound on an effortless but lengthy glide.This is not easy water, nor an easy paddle, and could be especially daunting for...
Published: 12/12/17
Punit Shah’s Liberty Group building new Channel District hotel with Jameis Winston as limited investor

Punit Shah’s Liberty Group building new Channel District hotel with Jameis Winston as limited investor

TAMPA — Punit Shah’s Liberty Group announced plans Tuesday to start construction in January on a Channel District project that will include a Hampton Inn and Home2 Suites, both by Hilton, plus a Starbucks Coffee.Financing for the $40 million project ...
Published: 12/12/17