One of America's largest grocers, Albertsons, is tapping into the ready meal market, while cereal maker Post Holdings expands its breakfast portfolio. Lidl proves that it is taking sustainability seriously with a new concept for a store near Stockholm, and the holiday spirit has already arrived in the US. Enjoy the read and have a great day.




Thursday, 21 September 2017





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One of America's largest grocers, Albertsons, is tapping into the ready meal market, while cereal maker Post Holdings expands its breakfast portfolio. Lidl proves that it is taking sustainability seriously with a new concept for a store near Stockholm, and the holiday spirit has already arrived in the US. Enjoy the read and have a great day.




USA & Canada


Strategic move ▪ Meal kit services continue to gain traction in the US. Albertsons has announced to buy start-up Plated. It is the grocer's first move since Amazon's Whole Foods acquisition sent ripples through the market. The American meal kit industry is said to be worth US$ 2.2 billion.



Breakfast deal ▪ US cereal maker Post Holdings is set to buy Bob Evans Farms for about US$ 1.5 billion, adding vegetable-based side dishes and sausages to its portfolio. The deal comes months after the St. Louis-based company agreed to buy British cereal brand Weetabix for US$ 1.8 billion.



In holiday spirit ▪ Logistics company UPS plans to hire approximately 95,000 seasonal employees. Unlike fellow retailer Target, Walmart will not employ external temporary workers but instead offer extra hours to its current staff. Meanwhile, Kohl's is ramping up its partnership with Amazon by accepting free returns for customers of the latter.




Europe


Outstanding approach ▪ A café, sun-panels on the roof, eco-zones and chargers for electric cars are some of the features of Lidl's new store in Sigtuna, north of Stockholm. Although the discounter might not roll out the concept, it shows the retailer's flexibility and will attract new target audiences to Lidl's Swedish stores.



Iberian expansions ▪ Portuguese supermarket chain Meu Super, owned by retail group Sonae, has been growing steadily since starting operations in 2012. It began with 24 stores, now 260 outlets are in operation. In neighbouring Spain, Eroski has extended its online and picking service into a number of Spanish regions.



Reporting results ▪ Apparel giant Inditex continues to lead global fashion retail. The owner of Zara posted a 9% rise in net profit to EUR 1.37 billion in the first half year. Delivering mixed financial results, home improvement retailer Kingfisher has warned over a cautious backdrop in the UK.




Asia


Ramping up services ▪ Ahead of China's annual 'Single Day' shopping spree, e-commerce giants Alibaba and JD.com have committed nearly US$ 330 million to strengthen their parcel delivery efficiency. Other news from China has it that Alibaba and Tencent are the country's most powerful investors.



Swiss snacks for China ▪ Targeting the Chinese middle class who appreciate high-quality foreign products, Swiss retail group Migros has started selling selected products such as coffee, snacks and drinks under the Orange Garten brand through Chinese online platform Kaola.



Fashion moves in India ▪ Teen retailer American Eagle Outfitters is preparing for its debut in India and entered an agreement with the Aditya Birla Group. Meanwhile, e-commerce major Flipkart targets female customers by pushing certain categories such as fashion, home and books.




Good intentions


Fighting hunger ▪ US supermarket operator Kroger has ambitious plans to address the “paradox” of hunger and food waste simultaneously. The effort includes establishing a US$ 10 million innovation fund, accelerating food donations and improving the quality of donated meals.



Simplifying labels ▪ The Consumer Goods Forum has approved a move to standardise food date labels worldwide by 2020, which would help to reduce food waste. The network includes 400 major players in the industry, among them Tesco, Walmart, Carrefour and Unilever.