Taking on Amazon - Germany's online fashion giant Zalando has launched a premium membership service and Walmart experiments with drones at a New York airport. In the meantime, the Seattle-based e-commerce juggernaut introduced a shoppable feature called Spark. Get informed about the latest developments and feel free to share.




Wednesday, 19 July 2017





Hello, dear reader,

Taking on Amazon - Germany's online fashion giant Zalando has launched a premium membership service and Walmart experiments with drones at a New York airport. In the meantime, the Seattle-based e-commerce juggernaut introduced a shoppable feature called Spark. Get informed about the latest developments and feel free to share.

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Europe


Fashion response to Amazon ▪ Berlin-based Zalando has announced the launch of Zalando Zet, a premium membership service akin to Amazon Prime. It will be initially tested in four German cities. However, Europe's biggest fashion e-tailer needs to scale up as its quarterly results were a tad below expectations, sending its shares down.



Strength through unity ▪ French retailer Les Mousquetaires Intermarché has opened the first franchised FNAC cultural goods stores in Portugal. This development is interesting according to LZ Retailytics as both operators are now extending their home partnership to other countries, competing together against digitalisation and e-commerce.



Exec changes ▪ French retailer Auchan has announced three changes to its senior executive teams globally, affecting its Russian and Chinese operations. Over in Russia, Tariel Bokuchava has been appointed as O'Key Group's new IT director. He is set to bring the company to the 'cutting edge' of technology.




USA


Walmart trials drones ▪ The big box retailer has joined the drone delivery bandwagon and decided to experiment with its own unmanned aerial devices at an airport in New York. A two-year deal, which sees Walmart paying nearly US$ 1.6 million for airport space, has been approved.



Amazon offers Spark ▪ The e-commerce heavyweight has launched a new feature inside its mobile apps. It is called Spark and aims to improve product discovery translating directly into purchases with the click of a button. It's kind of like Instagram, but for more than just looking. Here's how to use it.



Artsy bets on auctions ▪ The New York-based online marketplace for buying, selling and learning about visual art has raised US$ 5 million in funding, which will be used as an investment to dive deeper into auctions, which is the fastest-growing part of Artsy.




Asia & Australia


E-commerce moves ▪ Hong Kong-headquartered fashion company Grana, one of Asia's fastest growing online marketplaces, has launched into mainland China through Alibaba’s Tmall. Meanwhile, Foot Locker Australia, which operates 100 stores across Australasia, has opened its first Aussie e-commerce platform.



Foodland beats Aldi ▪ The German discounter is no longer the top supermarket in Australia for customer satisfaction according to the latest Canstar Blue survey. After three years in the lead, Aldi has lost the spot to South Australian grocer Foodland, owned by Metcash, now boasting the most satisfied customers.



Tax hurts tobacco maker ▪ Shares of ITC Ltd, Asia’s second-largest cigarette maker by value, experienced their biggest fall in 25 years, erasing US$ 7.5 billion from the company’s market value. The decline came after India surprised investors by raising levies on tobacco products. The government increased the special tax on cigarettes by as much as 10%.




Africa


Massmart slows down ▪ The South African unit of Walmart, reported a sharp slowdown in half-year growth as its home market slipped into recession. Total sales rose 0.5% to US$ 3.28 billion. Weak consumer spending and low confidence weighed on the retailer.



Manufacturing hub Ethiopia ▪ The continent's second-most populous country is set to become the largest economy in East Africa and a hub for international clothing manufacturers. While firms from China, South Korea and India have already opened their own plants, an increasing number of European (paywall) and US brands are following suit.