Amazon’s Whole Foods acquisition continues to send shockwaves around the world, with swift and decisive market reaction. Predictably, while both companies have enjoyed skyrocketing share prices, big box retailers have borne the brunt of the announcement. Enjoy the read and feel free to share.




Tuesday, 20 June 2017





Greetings!

Amazon’s Whole Foods acquisition continues to send shockwaves around the world, with swift and decisive market reaction. Predictably, while both companies have enjoyed skyrocketing share prices, big box retailers have borne the brunt of the announcement. Enjoy the read and feel free to share.




USA


Market reacts ▪ Shares in Whole Foods and Amazon have soared following last week’s announcement, while bricks-and-mortar retailers such as Target, Walmart and Costco took a massive hit. However, there were some beneficiaries of the announcement, including British e-grocer Ocado.



Going public ▪ Under the cloud of Amazon’s Whole Foods deal, US meal-delivery service Blue Apron and European food delivery start-up Delivery Hero are preparing their market listing. The former has launched a US$ 150 million IPO and the latter is set to raise around EUR 927 million. Analysts are watching with interest.



Exec appointments ▪ Candy giant Mars has tapped Sandeep Dadlani, former president of Infosys, as its new chief digital officer. Netherlands-based food retailer Ahold has promoted Nick Bertram as president of its US operations.




Europe


Looking out for staff ▪ Discounter Lidl has re-introduced surveillance cameras in some of it stores, nearly ten years after removing them amidst a staff spying scandal. The retailer says installation will be in consultation with its employees. Meanwhile, Belgian retailer Colruyt is seeing improvements in the working conditions of its suppliers with its regular company-wide audits.



Amazon’s next play ▪ Speculation is mounting that the online retail giant is deepening its push into vehicle sales (paywall). Those close to the scheme say it plans to expand its current trial into another major European market, possibly the UK. Meanwhile Spanish supermarket chain Dia plans to grow its partnership with the e-commerce heavyweight to bring its groceries to more cities in Spain.


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Sustainable leaders ▪ Coop Switzerland has been named the world’s most committed retailer in sustainable development in a study of 148 global retailers across one hundred criteria. German retailer Rewe has also been recognised for its focus on sustainability, receiving the NACS Sustainability Award for 2017.




Asia


Ferrero for innovation ▪ The confectionary giant is opening its first Asian innovation centre, to be based in Singapore. The site will be home to several strategic innovation functions, including health and nutrition, new raw materials and research and development.



Yirendai ramps up ▪ China’s largest peer-to-peer lending platform has plans to boost its profile with an expanded product offering, including wealth management, as it seeks to shrug off concerns about a regulation-induced slowdown of the sector.



Fashion forward ▪ Recruitment activity for Uniqlo Vietnam has fuelled rumours the Japanese fast-fashion player is headed for the market. Affordable luxury brand ba&sh has made its Asian debut in Hong Kong while Chanel has opened a pop-up boutique in Singapore.




Trends to watch


Little consumers in waiting ▪ Youngsters are turning to consumption at an increasingly young age as families struggle to come to terms with the demands of modern life: work/life balance, pervasive online engagement, kids living at home for longer and the rise of instant gratification.



Gender diversity falling short ▪ The latest report out of the Australian Institute of Company Directors has found that corporate Australia is unlikely to reach voluntary targets for 30 per cent female board representation by the end of 2018.