The huge share buyback plan and a focus on online growth has sent Walmart shares to a two-year high. Struggling Sears seeks approval to close its Canadian stores. Fresh-food IPOs in Europe show that healthier eating is burgeoning, and sustainability issues are on the agenda Down Under. Enjoy the read and feel free to share.




Wednesday, 11 October 2017





Hello ,

The huge share buyback plan and a focus on online growth has sent Walmart shares to a two-year high. Struggling Sears seeks approval to close its Canadian stores. Fresh-food IPOs in Europe show that healthier eating is burgeoning, and sustainability issues are on the agenda Down Under. Enjoy the read and feel free to share.




USA & Canada


Bullish outlook ▪ Walmart predicted a 40% growth in its e-commerce sales and announced a US$ 20 billion share buyback programme. The retail behemoth revealed that it will focus on smaller formats and open fewer than 15 new supercentres as well as expanding in-store pickup.



Canadian closure ▪ Sears is calling it quits in Canada. The money-losing department store chain is seeking court approval to liquidate its stores across the country, leaving 12,000 employees without a job. The brand is also struggling in the US, where it received a US$ 100 million loan from its CEO's hedge fund.



P&G beats Peltz ▪ After months of battling over the future of the American consumer goods icon, shareholders have rejected a bid by Nelson Peltz for a board seat, but only by a slim margin. The activist investor, however, won't give up, and some analysts think that P&G would be better off with him.




Europe


Nisa welcomes Co-op ▪ Britain's Co-operative Group has officially made a GBP 143 million offer to acquire the convenience grocery chain. The board of Nisa has recommended its 1,190 shopkeeper members to agree to the takeover. They continue as a standalone brand under the deal.



Going public ▪ Rocket Internet-backed HelloFresh has a second go at an initial public offering. A flotation could value the meal-kit start-up at up to US$ 1.8 billion. Britain's Bakkavor Group, which provides freshly prepared foods to the likes of Tesco and M&S, is eyeing a GBP 100 million listing.



Italian moves ▪ Amid growing competition, discount leader Eurospin has launched an organic private label. Supermarket chain Esselunga is set to issue a bond of EUR 1 billion to refinance part of a EUR 1.5 billion contracted loan, which it obtained following the death of founder Bernardo Caprotti.




Latin America & Africa


Online in Brazil ▪ The Brazilian unit of French retailer Carrefour will start an e-commerce grocery platform in Sao Paolo, with fresh capital to boost its online presence in a fiercely competitive market. Food orders would be delivered to buyers’ doorsteps from a distribution centre close to the city.



Supermarket struggles ▪ Botswana’s budget retailer Choppies plans to open 40 more stores, including a pilot in Namibia, while Kenyan supermarket operators Nakumatt and Uchumi keep on struggling. The former has just lost another executive with the departure of marketing manager Andrew Dixon.




Asia & Australia


Indonesian platform ▪ South Korea's Lotte and Jakarta-based conglomerate Salim Group joined forces to launch an online shop, called iLotte, in Indonesia. The e-commerce business will primarily target women by offering clothes, cosmetics and other lifestyle goods.



Transition ahead ▪ Embattled Australian department store chain Myer will farewell its chairman earlier than previously planned. Former Quantas director Garry Hounsell will take over the role in November and is determined to bring back the brand to former glory.



Sustainability matters ▪ Woolworths and Aldi Australia have announced they will help support a government initiative by hosting refund collection points for empty bottles and cans. In New Zealand, supermarket giant New World follows rival Countdown in going plastic bag free.