Hello, dear reader!
The pharma mega deal of the year - Bayer's acquisition of Monsanto - is in progress, albeit still facing a lot of hurdles. Amazon introduces its Echo speakers in European markets, while Lidl is on the lookout for staff in the US. Newly formed combo Ahold-Delhaize is criticised for squeezing suppliers and Heineken eyes the South African market. Read these stories and a lot more in today's issue.
asia & australia
Chinese beer appetite China Resources Beer is considering a bid for SABMiller’s central and eastern European operations, valued at about US$ 6 billion. The assets include Pilsner Urquell. But China's brewers have a problem: The country is losing its appetite for beer.
Myer makes progress The Australian department store chain has more than doubled its profit in the first year of its transformation strategy and CEO Richard Umbers believes that the business has become stronger in a "challenging environment.
More premieres for Amazon The online behemoth will introduce Echo and Echo Dot in Britain and Germany. It will be the first release of the voice-controlled speaker and smart home hub outside the US. Another first is the launch of a TV advertising campaign in the UK by Amazon Fashion (paywall).
Ahold-Delhaize under scrutiny The Netherlands' Food and Grocery Industry Federation considers a formal complaint against the Belgian-Dutch retail giant for demanding concessions from suppliers in the wake of its merger. Meanwhile, subsidiary Albert Heijn has opened its first petrol-station based 'To Go" outlet in the country.
usa & canada
Visa partners in Kenya The credit card company has teamed up with a number of banks in the country to launch its Mvisa app that allows users to make purchases or transfer money using their cell phones. Visa plans to expand to Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania, and Nigeria within the year.