Amazon has beaten Google parent Alphabet to become the second most valuable US-listed company, as its race against market leader Apple continues. News is less celebratory across the Atlantic, where the closures of New Look stores will leave over 1000 out of work. China's biggest brewery is turning towards a younger market, and Popeyes chicken is coming to Brazil.




Thursday, 22 March 2018





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Amazon has beaten Google parent Alphabet to become the second most valuable US-listed company, as its race against market leader Apple continues. News is less celebratory across the Atlantic, where the closures of New Look stores will leave over 1000 out of work. China's biggest brewery is turning towards a younger market, and Popeyes chicken is coming to Brazil.




US & Canada


Amazon up ▪ The Seattle-based e-commerce giant became the second most valuable publicly listed company in the US Tuesday, surpassing Google parent Alphabet for the first time. The gain may come as relief to Amazon, which has been offloading costs on suppliers as it tries to cut losses in its price war with rival Walmart.



Targeting loyalty ▪ Target has introduced a new loyalty programme, Target Red, an alternative to its existing REDCard offer. The new service provides discounts on delivery with Shipt, free next-day delivery with the retailer's own Target Restock, and cash back on later purchases.


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Liquor license ▪ A US Federal judge has blocked the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission from withholding licenses for Walmart to sell liquor by the bottle, after the retailer argued that the restrictions amounted to unconstitutional discrimination. The Texas Package Stores Association has said that it intends to appeal the ruling.



Decreased expectations ▪ Cereal maker General Mills has cut its yearly earnings forecast, citing higher transportation and commodity costs. The Minneapolis-based packaged food company now expects its fiscal 2018 adjusted earnings per share to grow up to 1%, versus its prior 3 to 4% forecasted increase.




Europe


Sainsbury's price slash ▪ The supermarket chain is cutting prices of 930 everyday grocery products in stores and online, as part of its GBP 150 million investment drive. Affected products include the grocer's own-brand food ranges, with Sainsbury's estimating that a typical weekly family shop will be 8% cheaper as a result of the cuts.



Looking rough ▪ New Look is to close 60 UK stores and cut 1000 jobs as part of a turnaround plan, which will also cut rents by 15 to 55% across its remaining 393 stores. Anders Kristiansen, who stepped down as the chief executive of the embattled fashion retailer in September, has been appointed to lead competitor Esprit.



Baker's delight ▪ Sourdough is now one of the fastest growing bread varieties in the UK, according to Tesco, which quadrupled its sourdough range over the last 5 years. The UK’s largest grocer says it saw consumer demand for the bread grow nearly 40% last year, and that it now sells around 100,000 loaves a week.




Asia & Australia


Indonesian innovation ▪ Conglomerate Salim Group’s Idmarco grocery shopping app saw its full scale launch across the country on Wednesday. The app, which has been available in limited areas since last April, targets small shop owners.



Hip hops ▪ China Resources Beer, the country's largest brewer, is redesigning its packaging and working with music stars. The brewery is attempting to rebrand as younger and more energetic as it looks towards the internet generation as its next growth market.




Latin America & Middle East


Chasing chicken ▪ The operator of Burger King in Brazil has signed a franchising agreement with US fried chicken chain Popeyes Louisiana Chicken. Under the deal, BK Brasil agreed to a number of long-term goals including the opening of 300 restaurants in the country in the next 10 years.



Online in Israel ▪ Marks and Spencer has launched a website for online sales in Israel, which offers delivery free of charge for orders over NIS 250 and express delivery in three days. The launch of the website follows successes by similar UK websites like Next in the middle eastern country.