The battle royal between Amazon and instore shopping has reached a tipping point in the US. Retail stalwarts such as Walmart heavily invest in improving their performance. Check out the retailer's latest store concept and get inspired by Lowe's introduction of a wearable robotic suit. Enjoy the read and feel free to share.




Tuesday, 16 May 2017





Hello, dear reader

The battle royal between Amazon and instore shopping has reached a tipping point in the US. Retail stalwarts such as Walmart heavily invest in improving their performance. Check out the retailer's latest store concept and get inspired by Lowe's introduction of a wearable robotic suit. Enjoy the read and feel free to share.

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USA & Canada


Amazon celebrates ▪ Twenty years after going public as a modest online bookstore, the e-commerce behemoth is worth US$ 466 billion, twice as much as Walmart. Insiders believe that Amazon's lead will further grow over the coming decade and that the retail disruptor will be eating the world.



Brewing powerhouse invests ▪ Anheuser-Busch InBev plans to spend US$ 2 billion in the US, where its flagship Budweiser has suffered from declining volumes and a falling market share. The money will help support the company’s forays into “near beer,” alcoholic sparkling water, and other products.


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Partnerships and acquisitions ▪ Albertson's subsidiary Jewel-Osco has entered a purchase agreement with Central Grocers to buy 19 Strack & Van Til stores. Central has filed for bankruptcy earlier this month. Meanwhile, outdoor retailer REI teamed up with Momentum Indoor Climbing to set up a shop in the gym niche.




Europe


Aldi eyes Romania ▪ The German discount giant is planning to enter the fast-growing Romanian grocery market and has started recruiting its local management team in the country. Analytics platform LZ Retailytics reckons that Aldi might face stiff headwinds in this rapidly maturing market.



Carrefour rewards customers ▪ The French retailer and BNP Paribas bank have unveiled a QR code-based mobile payment platform and a loyalty service. The company also launched a private label apple juice, 'developed by and for consumers' and plans to double the sales of organic products (paywall) in France.


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More private label deals ▪ Morrisons has agreed to an exclusive three-year contract with dairy co-operative Arla Foods, which will supply the British supermarket chain with own-label milk, starting in March 2018. The retailer has also committed to ‘further enhancing its regional and local milk offering'.




Asia


Seeking growth in China ▪ Belgian retailer Colruyt and Britain's Sainsbury’s are both looking to tap into growing demand for quality food in China. The former started test sales of private labels via Alibaba’s Tmall, and the latter, which already sells on the platform, has teamed up with Dairy Farm outlets in Hong Kong.



Focus on Japan ▪ The Southeast Asian operations of Tokyo-headquartered convenience chain Familymart are under review after mounting losses. This affects mainly businesses in Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia. In China and Taiwan the company, which wants to concentrate on its home market, is profitable.




Future Concepts


Fighting e-commerce ▪ The unstoppable rise of online shopping has seen malls shuttered, chains closing and retail giants getting active. Take a look at Walmart's latest test store with a new layout and added technology. Other retail heavyweights are also thinking outside the box.



Merging digital and traditional ▪ US candy maker Hershey's has developed a concept store that may help retailers adapt to the future of food retail by combining traditional ways with the digital age. Click here to get informed about their six strategies to be successful.



Wearable robotics ▪ US home improvement retailer Lowe’s has given employees a new type of robotic exoskeleton to help them lift heavy items within stores more easily. The lightweight suit also helps against muscle fatigue and is being piloted in a store in Virginia.