Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Tuesday, 05 April 2016

The trend of consuming health food leads Costco to strike a deal with farmers to grow organics, while in Australia, one company hopes to make a hit with its US$ 700 juicer, and another seeks to grow its health drinks business further in Asia. In other news, Waitrose is joining in the recent trend of (re-)launching an own-brand range, and Staples trials sharing store space. Enjoy the read.

Asia & Australia
Chinese strategy changes   China's largest privately owned conglomerate, Fosun, which spent over US$ 9 billion on outbound acquisitions since 2008, will change its strategy to mainly grow internally and targeting unicorn firms for acquisitions in order to cut debt +++ Following sanctions by the US for violating trade rules in Iran, Shenzen-based tech company ZTE changes its top management. ▪
Domino's to pick up speed   Australia's biggest pizza chain not only plans to recruit another 3,000 people to its delivery fleet of 10,000 across Australia and New Zealand, but also trials high speed cooking technology making pizza from scratch in three minutes. ▪
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'Juicy' trends   Juicero, an Australian unproven startup, which managed to raise US$ 120 million in investments from Silicon Valley titans, opens for business this week +++ Another Australian health drink maker, The Food Revolution Group, has struck a series of deals within the country and now looks to China for further growth ▪
Tata Steel waves 'good bye'   The British government has asked Europe’s second largest steelmaker by production capacity, which explores a sale of all of its UK operations, to keep the loss-making business operating while a buyer is found. A closure of the operations would leave a hole in many manufacturers’ supply chains and create logistical troubles, as Tata Steel is used in a number of products from Heinz cans to cladding on Ikea buildings. ▪
Possible overseas business   An eagerly awaited overseas deal might be in the pipeline for the British online grocer Ocado, as it seeked advise on a potential US debut, with Florida-based Publix Super Markets being a potential partner +++ With the possible Brexit looming, most big British firms are delaying deals and hiring decisions. ▪
New brand, new space   While Waitrose has launched a new own premium brand 'Waitrose 1', which comprises 500 products and is set to increase to over 800, Aldi has opened its largest distribution centre in Britain. ▪
Amazon expands services   The etail giant takes on PayPal by extending its own online payment space to third-party businesses hosting a shop on an e-commerce website in an 'Amazon Payments Partner Program'. Its 'Prime Now' delivery service will be expanded from mobile app-only to the standard website from next month.  ▪
Generating new partnerships   As US grocers struggle to keep up with the ongoing demand for organic products, Costco has launched a program to help farmers buy additional land and equipment to grow organics +++ By collaborating with office-sharing startup Workbar, Staples is piloting to open a communal workspace at three of its stores. ▪
Food stamp qualifications change   As states reimpose time limits and work requirements for benefits in the food stamp programme SNAP, hundreds of thousands of people could soon lose food stamps, which would also impact on the revenue of retailers such as Walmart. ▪
Further investigation   Today's deadline for the completion of the South-African Competition Commission's investigation into the Anheuser-Busch InBev takeover of SABMiller is set to be extended for the third time as requested by the commission. ▪
Uchumi nears insolvency   As the Kenyan’s supermarket chain has severe troubles to meet its skyrocketed debt to suppliers and to find an investor who is willing to inject the much-needed cash, it is on the verge of insolvency. ▪

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