Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Hello, dear reader
Alibaba-backed Best Logistics gets ready for an initial public offering in the US this year, its shareholders also include Foxconn and Goldman Sachs. Meanwhile, another Chinese company, LeEco, and South Korean retailer Lotte have dramatically cut their overseas ventures. Read these stories and a lot more in today's issue.

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Asia & Australia
Chinese deals   Best Logistics, a tech company backed by Alibaba with a market value of US$ 3 billion, is stepping up to go public in the US, aiming to raise roughly US$ 1 billion. Meanwhile, Beijing-based smartphone and video firm LeEco is walking away from its planned US$ 2 billion acquisition of Californian TV maker Vizio.  ▪
Korean decisions   Following the closure of more than 100 supermarkets and discount shops in China, Seoul-headquartered retail conglomerate Lotte Group has cancelled its US$4.5 billion IPO +++ Service provider Uber Technologies plans to launch its on-demand restaurant delivery service UberEats in South Korea.  ▪
Woolies follows Coles   Wesfarmers-owned supermarket Coles recently announced it would pay small suppliers within 14 days , down from about 30 days. Now, rival Woolworths is also committing to settle faster with its distributors. Last year, the competition regulator was taking legal action against both big chains in this regard. ▪
Europe & Middle East
Shufersal buys drugstore chain   Israel's largest supermarket operator has finally acquired local chain New-Pharm Drugstore, which operates 67 branches throughout the country and as well as pharmacy goods, also sells cosmetics and natural healthcare products. The deal, worth US$ 35.6 million, is subject to approval.  ▪
Cross-border investments   German discounter Lidl has increased its Portuguese spending to EUR 70 million and will add six outlets to its 246 store-network. Meanwhile, British frozen food retailer Iceland has announced that it is investing EUR 12 million in its Irish operations, opening nine new stores and creating 270 jobs. ▪
Body Shop in demand   The struggling British skincare retailer, which has been put up for sale by French cosmetics group L’Oréal, has attracted bids from as many as 15 private equity firms, including CVC Capital Partners, Carlyle and South Korea’s CJ Group. ▪
USA & Canada
Supervalu accelerates growth   The US retailer will expand its footprint along the West Coast with the planned US$ 375 million acquisition of California-based Unified Grocer. The two wholesalers had combined 2016 sales of about US$ 16 billion and distribute to more than 3,000 retail locations.  ▪
Focus on beauty   Pharmacy store chain Walgreens plans to add "Beauty Differentiation" formats across more than 1,000 additional stores, and fast-growing retailer Ulta Beauty will touch down at mammoth shopping centre Mall of America this year with an extended offering of more than 20,000 products. ▪
Africa
Positive outlook for Pick n Pay    Despite a difficult trading environment, the South-African retailer expects full-year profit to increase between 15 to 20%, due to disciplined cost measures and higher productivity in stores. The company also trades in Namibia, Zimbabwe and Zambia. ▪
Nakumatt steps up   In a bid to boost efficiency and accelerate cost cutting efforts as part of its ongoing corporate restructuring, the Kenyan supermarket operator has announced key management changes. The company wants to enhance corporate governance and customer delivery excellence. ▪
Tech hub gets makeover   After a decade of buzz, Kenya’s “Silicon Savannah” is refocusing on profit and revenues. Visa and Mastercard are turning to local fintech companies to crack the market and giants like Facebook and Google have started strategic alliances with the country's tech scene. ▪

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