Hello, dear reader!
Discounter Lidl seems to be busy on all fronts, reshuffling its management team, testing a new store concept and fighting for market share in France. Meanwhile, a new supermarket giant is in the making in Italy, and emerging markets in Africa are attracting investors from China and other parts of the world. Have a great start to a productive week.
Hisense expands in Africa The Chinese electronics manufacturer is increasing its presence in Southern African countries. In its latest move, the company has launched a new range of class leading smartphones, televisions and fridges into Zambia.
Mercedes opens restaurant German car maker Mercedes-Benz has launched a new retail and dining concept called ‘Mercedes Me’ in Hong Kong. It was created in partnership with restaurant group Maximal Concepts.
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Coop merges in Italy Three supermarket chains, Coop Adriatica, Coop Estense and Coop Consumatori Nordest, have merged to form Coop Alleanza 3.0. The new Italian retail giant will have 2.7 million members, a turnover of EUR 5 billion, and 419 outlets including 56 hypermarkets.
Magnit changes management Russia’s largest food retailer has announced changes to its senior management team as it unveiled plans to consolidate all of its three retail formats and its marketing department under one director.
Cost cuts at department stores J.C. Penney has reached a deal with about 12,000 retirees and beneficiaries to accept a lump-sum payment and settle pension obligations, helping the department store operator save 35% pension obligations +++ Neiman Marcus axes 500 jobs as the upscale retailer prepares to open new stores.
Targeting the festive season Office supply chain operator Staples announced it will be closing its stores on Thanksgiving Day to give customers and employees a chance to enjoy the holiday. Meanwhile, electronics retailer Gamestop has joined a growing number of retailers in launching an enhanced layaway program.
Raising stakes and buying businesses Brait, the investment company controlled by South African billionaire Christo Wiese, has paid GBP 172 million to raise its stake in budget supermarket chain Iceland Foods to 57%. Meanwhile, Cape Town-based company Rhodes Food struck a deal with General Mills SA to acquire its food services business for an undisclosed amount.
Investing into emerging markets Global logistics company DHL aims to grow significantly in the Sub-Saharan Africa region under the leadership of its newly appointed CEO for the area, Hennie Heyman +++ Former First National Bank CEO Michael Jordaan has invested in South African online wine retailer Port2Port, where he is also expected to take a directorship.