Ordinary consumers now can experience the future of grocery shopping as Amazon opens its automated store for the public. Fierce rival Walmart seeks to drive online perishable sales in the US and in Sweden, Ica Gruppen sets new convenience standards with a combined e-commerce offer. Enjoy the read and have a great start to the week.




Monday, 22 January 2018





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Ordinary consumers now can experience the future of grocery shopping as Amazon opens its automated store for the public. Fierce rival Walmart seeks to drive online perishable sales in the US and in Sweden, Ica Gruppen sets new convenience standards with a combined e-commerce offer. Enjoy the read and have a great start to the week.




USA & Canada


Automation for everyone ▪ After one year of testing by its employees, Amazon is going to let everybody shop in its automated Seattle store from today. Here is how surveillance-powered Amazon Go looks inside.The online powerhouse also revealed that it will increase the fees for its Prime membership.



Fresh initiatives ▪ Walmart has filed a patent application for a system that would allow customers to view individual fresh items remotely by using stock photos before purchasing them. The nation's largest brick-and-mortar retailer has also trademarked the name "Wam! by Walmart" for its home delivery service.



Thinking ahead ▪ Coffee shop chain Dunkin' Donuts is piloting a new “next-generation concept store” in Quincy, Massachusetts, where it will test multiple new offerings related to ordering, payment, signage and branding, before choosing whether or not to roll them out broadly,




Latin America & Africa


Negotiating stakes ▪ Private equity firm Advent is in talks to buy 50% of Walmart's operations in Brazil, where the US big box discounter runs 471 stores across 18 states. Fellow retailer and supermarket giant Albertsons has announced a deal to sell its 49% stake in Mexican chain Casa Ley.



Tough times ▪ Massmart, Walmart's South African subsidiary, recorded muted growth for the year to December as it battled a weaker economy and stronger rand. Cape Town-based Shoprite faces the same slowdown, but its overall turnover grew 6.3% in the second half of 2017.




Europe


Leadership change ▪ In a surprise move, Dixons Carphone boss Sebastian James has resigned on Friday. He will run high street chemist Boots. Alex Baldock, who is currently group chief executive of online retailer Shop Direct, will take over at Britain’s biggest electrical chain in April.



Online boost ▪ Sweden's leading retailer, Ica Gruppen, is leveraging the synergies from its 2014 purchase of Apotek Hjärtat by bundling deliveries for e-commerce orders of grocery and pharmacy items. The move will set a new convenience standard according to LZ Retailytics.



Challenges in Switzerland ▪ As the Swiss retail market continues to face some difficulties, beginning with the steadily high cross-border shopping, retailer Migros could only report a sales increase of 1% over the course of 2017 to a total of CHF 28.0 billion. E-commerce operations have proved to be the winning channel.




Asia


Entering new markets ▪ Thailand’s CP Group plans its debut in India via its Siam Makro subsidiary. The retailer wants to open 15 wholesale cash and carry stores. Meanwhile, Korean convenience store chain GS25 officially has launched its first store in Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh City with more to follow this month.



Offline efforts ▪ Alibaba says that it will open three Hema supermarket stores in the Chinese city of Xian by year-end, following its announcement to add 30 locations in Beijing. Currently, the online behemoth runs 26 outlets in seven cities in China.