Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung

Hello and welcome to 2016!
We hope that the New Year will have plenty of good news in store for you. Dealmakers are set to be busy again as buoyant merger and acquisition activity has already started. Sustainability matters for billion-dollar companies and it can also be profitable. Check out how this works. Enjoy our first issue of the year and don't forget to share it with your colleagues. Subscription is FREE.

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asia & australia
Investing in networks and customers   Australian mobile services provider Amaysim buys virtual network operator Vaya for AU$ 70 million to bolster its position in a consolidating market +++ Over in India, digital payments company Paytm has acquired consumer behaviour prediction platform Shifu for US$ 8 million and is also looking to enter the competitive grocery delivery space. ▪
Alibaba steps up   The Chinese e-commerce giant is starting 2016 with the goal of winning the trust of investors, sellers and buyers. It has increased its anti-counterfeit efforts by adding 200 people to its existing team of 5,000 employees and volunteers, which is already fighting the distribution of counterfeit products. ▪
India bans online drug sale   The ease of ordering drugs online from home could soon be history in India. The Drugs Controller General has directed all state governments and Union territories to take action against the unauthorised sale of medicines on the internet. ▪
Australians speed up in the US   Melbourne-based packaging company Amcor has acquired privately owned California-based Deluxe Packages for US$ 45 million. Meanwhile, Chocolate treat maker Yowie accelerates its US rollout after signing a long term agreement with New York-based Madelaine Chocolate Company. ▪
 europe
Apple pays Italian tax bill    The US tech giant will pay Italy's tax office EUR 318 million to settle a dispute and sign an agreement on how to manage its tax liabilities. Over in Germany, Apple has raised the prices for handheld devices following a deal between the tech industry and content producers that will benefit the entertainment sector. ▪
Aman allowed to acquire   Serbian retailer Aman has received the green light from local competition authorities to purchase seven stores from Mercator Serbia, owned by Croatian food-to-retail consortium Agrokor.  ▪
Retail donation for flood victims   British retailer Morrisons steps in to aid flood victims and will donate GBP 100,000 to those suffering from the effects of flooding in northern Britain in December.  Meanwhile, competitor Asda has bolstered its local disaster fund (paywall) to GBP 500,000 to help recovery in communities. ▪
USA & Mexico
Targeting smaller goals   Supermarket chain Safeway is continuing to open small-format stores, including a former Fresh & Easy Market it has acquired in California. Away from its big-ticket technology investments, Silicon Valley's Sequoia Capital is backing Bira 91, a domestic craft beer brand. ▪
American Apparel takes action   The troubled clothes retailer seems to be determined to steer itself through bankruptcy and aim for revival. The company has asked a judge to extend its exclusivity period for filing a reorganisation plan. ▪
E-commerce grows slowly in Mexico   Although cash remains king in the Latin American country, online shopping gains traction thanks to wider Internet access and smartphone use. Web retailers are on the lookout for creative solutions to enhance e-commerce. ▪
developments to watch
Profitable green giants   There are at least nine global billion-dollar companies which made sustainability profitable, according to British newspaper The Guardian. Amongst them are Ikea, Unilever, Nike and Whole Foods. ▪
Prepare for lower spending   Despite the fact that most consumers have more money in their pockets, retail sales' growth will slip back this year, according to the KPMG/Ipsos Retail Thinktank. With overall market growth low, traditional supermarkets will continue to face pressure.  ▪

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