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Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Thursday, 07 April 2016

Hello, subscribers!
In China, Alibaba-owned South China Morning Post has removed the paywall on its website, in Europe, H&M reveals big expansion plans for the next eight years, and in the US, Kroger is set to create 1000 new jobs. Have a great day, and don’t forget to share.

asia & the middle east
Alibaba removes paywall   South China Morning Post, which was recently acquired by the e-commerce giant, has dropped the paywall on its website in order to grow its global readership. Physical and PDF versions remain subscription based. ▪ enters car industry   The financial arm of the Chinese e-tailer has extended funding to Beijing auto credit company Meili, which will allow to expand its consumer credit business into auto finance. ▪
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Investments in Middle East   UK men’s formalwear retailer Moss Bros will open a store in Dubai, the first outside of the UK +++ To learn consumers’ tea preferences, state-owned Dubai Multi Commodities Centre is creating its own high-quality brand: Shay Dubai. ▪
H&M thinks big   Despite reporting a drop in first-quarter profits, the Swedish retailer plans to open 7,000 to 8,000 stores over the next four to eight years, including two stores in Sydney, Australia, as it continues its strategy to stay ahead of Amazon and rival Zara. ▪
Digital offers   Social giant Facebook and Tesco-owned research firm Dunnhumby have inked a deal to combine their data bases. The landmark partnership will give FMCG brands the ability to see how ads run online and offline +++ Swedish furniture retailer Ikea has launched a new virtual reality app that will enable customers to enter a virtual kitchen of real-world size. ▪
Good sorts   To encourage fish food companies to meet industry standards, Carrefour Italy has set a positive sign and committed to Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)-approved sustainable fishing. The move was welcomed by the council as the Italian market underdeveloped in terms of sustainability +++  In order to raise awareness of the intestinal disease, Marks & Spencer is supporting Coeliac UK through a three-year sponsorship deal. ▪
Kroger to create jobs   A plan to build new stores and refurbish existing ones, has the US supermarket chain poised to create 1,000 new jobs in Michigan, an investment worth US $180 million. Just recently the Cincinnati-based retailer has formed a “strategic partnership” with speciality grocer Lucky’s Market. ▪
Constellation on shopping spree     Following healthy net sales growth in the last financial year, US drinks company Constellation Brands continues to strengthen its position in the wine category by agreeing to purchase The Prisoner Wine Company’s portfolio of brands, which includes five wines. ▪
Latest results   Walgreens Boots Alliance has reported a net sales increase for the second quarter of 13.6%. Foreign currency translation, however, adversely affected sales by 2.4% +++ As agricultural commodities reduce demand for crop inputs, the world’s largest seed company, Monsanto Co, has reported its lowest second-quarter profit since 2011. ▪
Shoprite under pressure   Workers at a distribution centre owned by Africa's largest food retailer have gone on strike. The 900 workers at The Centurian facility are protesting low pay and outsourcing. ▪
Online sales growing   As more South Africans turn to the web, online sales are beginning to erode traditional retail’s market share, according to a report by World Wide Worx. This year online retail sales are expected to grow 20%, slightly down on last year. However, this still amounts to just 1% of overall retail sales. ▪

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