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Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Friday, 16 December 2016

Brewer Heineken is defying Brexit fears and marks its confidence in Britain by entering a multi-million deal with Punch Taverns. In the US, Cincinnati-based grocer Kroger is expected to attain a profit gain owing to the amended tax rates that the President-elect held out. PayPal has entered into its first partnership with a global bank. Enjoy the read and have a wonderful weekend!

Launching on the stock market    The parent of Spar China franchisor Spar Shandong, Jijiayue Group, has launched an IPO, issuing 90 million shares. South East Asia's most valuable tech start-up, Singapore-based Garena, makes progress with its plans for a US$ 1 billion IPO in the US (paywall).  ▪
7-Eleven targets Vietnam   For its planned market entry in Vietnam, the Texas-based convenience store chain is reportedly planning to take over the VinMart+ chain, Vietnam’s largest c-store chain with more than 700 outlets. ▪
Moving with the times   As traditional mail volumes fall, national postal firms in Asia adapt to the needs of the e-commerce market, battling with delivery giants like FedEx and DHL. ▪
A thirst for takeovers   Dutch brewer Heineken and investment partner Patron Capital have struck a GBP 403 million deal to buy and break up Punch Taverns, Britain's second-largest pub operator. London-based online food delivery service Just Eat is expanding its presence by gobbling up its competitors UK's Hungry House and Canada's SkipTheDishes, spending up to GBP 300 million. ▪
New store models   German discounter Lidl is planning an 'Express' format (paywall, German content) with the first test store featuring the new multichannel concept currently being built in Berlin. Spanish supermarket chain Mercadona has unveiled plans for a new efficient store model, investing EUR 180 million to refurbish and renovate 125 stores next year. ▪
Introducing services   Within the last six months, French books and electronics chain Fnac has installed collection bins (French content) at ten of its stores. German discounter Aldi Süd now allows a cash out service (paywall, German content) if a customer spends more than EUR 20. ▪
PayPal partners bank   After deals earlier this year with Mastercard and Visa, PayPal has struck its first pact with a global bank, Citi. Despite the rising number of payment options, cash seems far from being declared dead, as the number of dollar and euro notes has doubled since 2005. ▪
Kroger to benefit   While the grocer is expected to profit considerably from President-elect Donald Trump's plans to lower the corporate tax rates, Kroger is offering early retirement to 2,000 corporate employees in an effort to cut costs.  ▪
Workers' rights violated   US technology icon Apple was ordered to pay US$ 2 million for denying some retail workers meal breaks. Over in England, JD Sports launches investigations into working conditions at its main warehouse following revelations in a TV documentary. ▪
trends to watch
The potential of tech   More effective customer engagement was the motor for retailers to invest in technology such as artificial intelligence and related breakthroughs this year. Next year will show what the future holds for tech trends such as SmartLabels and beacons. While those tech trends may be celebrated for some of its virtues, they also have the potential to disrupt the grocery business model.   ▪
Trendy bites   Top food trends for 2017 as identified by Whole Foods, professional trendspotters and global buyers list wellness tonics, botanical or cider-based drinks, by-products and purple foods.  ▪
Amazon Go impacts   Retail experts comment on the new store format of the e-commerce giant as being a 'game changer'. However, it does not come without risks. ▪

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