Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Thursday, 05 January 2017

Hello, dear reader!
Online steamroller Amazon ventures further into the fashion sector and is reportedly considering acquiring bankrupt retailer American Apparel. Its Chinese competitor Alibaba demonstrate its efforts in cracking down counterfeits. Portuguese retailer Sonae partners with Britain's Hilton Group, and in the US, department stores Macy's and Sears fight to get back on track. Enjoy your Thursday bulletin and feel free to share the news.

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asia
Enhancing growth   In a bid to cut out the middlemen and streamline the export process, Alibaba and shipping line Maersk have teamed up to sell container ship spaces online. Shanghai-based fresh food online retailer Yiguo has become the second-largest stockholder of Lianhua and is set to improve the Chinese supermarket chain's online-to-offline operations. ▪
E-commerce boost in Vietnam   Japan-based retailer Aeon has launched an online store in the Southeast Asian country, which offers discounted Japanese goods and local brands. Aeon is not the only retailer to tap into the lucrative market. South Korean's Lotte Group started e-commerce in Vietnam at the end of last year. ▪
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Rocky road for deliveries   Making the business of on-demand grocery shopping viable in Southeast Asia has its hurdles for aspiring start-ups. Two-year old company HappyFresh just changed its CEO, Redmart sold its business to Lazada and competitor HonestBee had to scale back ambitious plans. ▪
europe & africa
Partnerships and other expansions   Portuguese retail company Sonae and British meat packer Hilton Food Group have formed a joint venture to strengthen the retailer's position and increase Hilton's presence in Portugal. Meanwhile, French retailer Auchan is planning to invest EUR 250 million in the relaunch of its shopping malls in Italy aiming to expand and remodel existing outlets. ▪
Festive results in UK   Discount chain B&M enjoyed a bumper Christmas trading period with sales up 7.2% and is confident to meet its full-year profit forecasts. Not so lucky is John Lewis. Despite posting strong sales in the week before Christmas, the department store operator had a 9.4% slump in the final week of 2016. ▪
Bad conditions for coffee   Kenya's second rainy season delayed coffee-bush flowering and the subsequent drought will hurt the size and quality of the nation’s Arabica crop, a government agency warned. The Coffee Research Institute expects the coffee production to decline. ▪
usa & canada
Amazon and the apparel market   The Seattle-based e-commerce powerhouse reportedly considers submitting an offer for bankrupt retailer American Apparel ahead of the deadline on Friday. This follows reports that Amazon will soon enter the world of stretch pants and gym shorts by launching its own active-ware line. ▪
Department store worries   To cut additional costs, Macy's will shut about 68 stores and eliminate thousands of jobs. The company will also cut its profit forecasts due to weak holiday sales. For the second time in a week, Sears is borrowing money from the hedge fund of its CEO and has announced more store closures. ▪
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litigation issues
Alibaba fights fake   Following pressure from brand owners and regulators, the Chinese online giant has sued two vendors using the company's Taobao e-commerce platform to sell fake Swarovski watches. It is Alibaba's first legal action against counterfeiters. ▪
Coca-Cola accused   The soft drink company is being sued by activists who compare it's advertising tactics to the tobacco industry's past efforts in minimising the health effects. US non-profit Praxis Project seeks to stop Coke and the American Beverage Association from deceptive advertising of sugary drinks. ▪

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