Amazon is set to create thousands of jobs in Canada, while its Chinese counterpart invests in payment options in India. Russian retailer X5 unveiled its new hypermarket format. Speaking of store concepts, check out the innovative ideas that have won the prestigious Retail Design Awards, recently presented in Shanghai. Get inspired!




Tuesday, 01 May 2018





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Amazon is set to create thousands of jobs in Canada, while its Chinese counterpart invests in payment options in India. Russian retailer X5 unveiled its new hypermarket format. Speaking of store concepts, check out the innovative ideas that have won the prestigious Retail Design Awards, recently presented in Shanghai. Get inspired!




Europe


Fresh look ▪ Russia's X5 Retail Group is set to overhaul its flagship cut-price store business, low-cost chain Pyaterochka, after disagreements over strategy with the unit’s head resulted in her departure. Last Friday, the grocer has opened the first of its revamped Karusel hypermarkets northeast of Moscow.



Sainsbury's delivers ▪ The grocer posted an increase in sales and profits for last year. Sales grew from GBP 29.1 billion in 2016/17 to GBP 31.7 billion. The results came on the heels of the announcement of the confirmed merger with Asda, which has caused some concerns. Here are some insider comments.



Growing in Bulgaria ▪ German discounter Lidl, which has operated in the country since 2010, will open at least seven new stores, mainly in Sofia, Varna and Plovdiv. Fellow retailer Billa Bulgaria recorded 9.2% revenue growth in 2017 and has launched eight outlets last year.




US & Canada


Canadian tech tower ▪ Amazon has announced that it will expand its Vancouver technology hub and create 3,000 high-tech jobs. The positions will be focused on e-commerce, cloud computing and machine learning. The employees will be working in a new tower the company plans to build in the city.



Adding stores ▪ Pennsylvania-based grocer Weis Markets will spend US$ 101 million in 2018 for projects including two new stores, 20 remodels, a new fuel centre and four new pharmacies. North-Carolina-headquartered retailer Food Lion plans to acquire four Bi-Lo stores from Southeastern Grocers.



Food service moves ▪ Chipotle Mexican Grill announced a national delivery partnership with DoorDash that covers more than 1,500 of the burrito chain’s over 2,400 restaurants. Hamburger giant McDonald’s topped analysts’ forecast with its Q1 results, helped by strength in international markets.




Asia & Brazil


Financial ventures ▪ Alibaba's financial affiliate Ant Financial has invested in Bangladesh mobile payment provider bKash, while Chinese tech giant Baidu is set to sell a majority stake in its financial service business to a consortium for about US$ 1.9 billion.



Reporting results ▪ Singaporean supermarket operator Sheng Siong Group posted a 6.6% rise in net profit in the first quarter and an improved gross margin as it sold more fresh products. The retailer also earned rebates from suppliers thanks to increased marketing efforts.



Solid performance ▪ Brazilian food retailer GPA, which controls some of the largest supermarket chains in the country, beat first-quarter profit estimates after a strong performance by its wholesale unit Assai. Net income rose 7.8% to US$ 65.05 million. GPA is owned by France’s Casino Group.




Cutting Edge


Lifestyle concepts ▪ Winners of the Retail Design Award, created by Messe Düsseldorf and EHI Institute, have been announced at trade show C-Star in Shanghai. Among them are Spanish wine store "De Vinos y Viandas" and Italian flagship La Rinascente. Click here for pictures (captions in German).



Sustainable chocolate ▪ Swiss retailer Coop and its production company Chocolates Halba have won the Swiss Ethics Award for their commitment to sustainable cocoa farming in Ecuador. Both firms train local Ecuadorian farmers in agroforestry so that they can pass on the knowledge to their colleagues.