More bidders are lining up for British health chain Holland & Barrett, while some Nisa members don’t approve a merger with Sainsbury’s. In the US, Amazon’s move to acquire Whole Foods still triggers speculation but no, Walmart is not considering an offer. Enjoy the read and have a great start to the new week.




Monday, 26 June 2017





Hello, dear reader,

More bidders are lining up for British health chain Holland & Barrett, while some Nisa members don’t approve a merger with Sainsbury’s. In the US, Amazon’s move to acquire Whole Foods still triggers speculation but no, Walmart is not considering an offer. Enjoy the read and have a great start to the new week.




Europe


Takeover plans in jeopardy ▪ Retail giant AS Watson might miss out on buying Holland & Barrett as heavyweight investment firm Letter 1 expressed interest in the health chain. Sainsbury’s attempt to acquire Nisa has also hit a snag as some members of the convenience chain expressed concerns and want its CEO to resign.



Tackling issues ▪ Switzerland’s Nestlé has become the latest target of US activist investor Daniel Loeb, who has a US$ 35 billion stake in the company. He wants the food major to sell its stake in L'Oréal. French yoghurt giant Danone is already in the process of optimising by combining its European business into one operation.



Premieres in Paris ▪ US retailer Costco has landed in France with its first store and is determined to make its mark in the country’s retail landscape. Surprisingly late, French retailer Casino jumps onto the vegan banner and plans to open three Naturalia outlets in the French capital.



Migros to slim down ▪ The Swiss retailer is reportedly planning to divest of its office supplies division Office World. The plan includes selling its 25 stores but as well as the delivery service. Strengthening its key competence, grocery retail, might be a winning strategy, says LZ Retailytics.




USA


Bidders in demand ▪ Walmart and Kroger were rumoured to make counter offers for Whole Foods, which was snapped up by Amazon for US 13.4 billion last week, but the world's largest retailer is reportedly not considering making an offer. Meanwhile, New York-based online grocer Fresh Direct has become a hot target.



Trouble at Bed Bath & Beyond ▪ Faced with cutthroat competition, namely from Amazon, the home improvement chain missed expectations for its first quarter. While the company is sustaining "very healthy growth" in digital, it is losing out on foot traffic and might close some of its stores.


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Asia & Australasia


Loyal partnership ▪ Japanese retailer Lawson (paywall) and Alibaba are teaming up and let users of the Alipay online payment platform accumulate and redeem loyalty points through purchases at the former’s convenience stores in both Japan and China.



Future Group on course ▪ The Kolkata-based retail conglomerate plans to rapidly expand and revamp its Nilgiris supermarket banner (paywall), which operates around 170 franchise stores in Southern India.The retailer also aims to grow its fashion business and is set to open more Central lifestyle department stores during the year.



Problem solving Down Under ▪ Supermarket giant Woolworths has sold New Zealand retailer EziBuy to Sydney-based Alceon Group, and strong competition has put Metcash under pressure. The supplier reported a 26% fall in full-year profits. Its CEO will step down after five years in the role.




Image gallery


Mobile shopping ▪ While Amazon's future vision involves automated stores, Swedish start-up Wheelys and a Chinese university have created a robo-grocery store that will drive to shopper's doors. The mobile shop without staff gets tested in Shanghai. Here are some pictures.



Perfect combination ▪ Manufactum, a subsidiary of German retail group Otto, has unveiled its latest store concept in Bremen. The prestigious project is hailed as a "shining example of urban development and retail". Get inspired by these photos (with German captions).