International Flavors & Fragrances agreed to buy Israel's Frutarom in one of the biggest acquisitions that the country has seen. Italian food emporium Eataly ponders on a possible joint-venture in China, while Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi plans to enter France and Italy. Across the Atlantic, the meal kit industry is booming. Enjoy the read!




Tuesday, 08 May 2018





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International Flavors & Fragrances agreed to buy Israel's Frutarom in one of the biggest acquisitions that the country has seen. Italian food emporium Eataly ponders on a possible joint-venture in China, while Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi plans to enter France and Italy. Across the Atlantic, the meal kit industry is booming. Enjoy the read!




Europe & Middle East


Acquisition in Israel ▪ Competing for the industry's top spot, New York-headquartered International Flavors & Fragrances is set to buy Haifa-based ingredients company Frutarom for USD 7.1 billion in cash and stock. The latter sells more than 70,000 products and has Unilever, Nestlé and Coca-Cola among its customers.



Going international ▪ Italian food emporium operator Eataly is looking overseas to grow. Chairman Andrea Guerra said that he will decide on a possible joint-venture in China. The company has ended 2017 with a profit of EUR 1 million, compared to a loss of EUR 21 million in 2016. Turnover grew 20% to EUR 465 million (paywall).



Fuelling competition ▪ Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi announced that it will enter France and Italy this month and is set to make more moves in Europe. Meanwhile, Israeli start-up BringBring is challenging big supermarket chains in the country as it is trying to prove that providing online shopping can be profitable.




US & Canada


Meal kit moves ▪ Fruit and vegetable giant Del Monte is investing USD 4 million in Purple Carrot, a Massachusetts-based start-up, which only sells vegan meals. The deal gives the latter access to a national distribution network. Blue Apron started piloting meal kits at select Costco stores, marking the company’s first retail store distribution.



Flagship sale ▪ Canadian department store owner Hudson’s Bay and joint venture partner RioCan have signed a conditional agreement to sell the former's iconic store in Vancouver for about CAD 675 million to an Asian buyer. It follows the sale of its Lord & Taylor store on New York’s Fifth Avenue last year.



Fighting misuse ▪ Walmart announced that it would restrict opioid prescriptions to no more than a seven-day supply as the retailer aims to curb an opioid epidemic that has plagued the United States. The company also said that from 2020 it would require e-prescriptions for controlled substances.




Asia & Australasia


Esprit exits ▪ German-headquartered but Hong Kong-listed global fashion brand Esprit has announced the closure of its Australian and New Zealand business. The move will see 16 retail stores and 13 factory outlets shut down by the end of the year. The company says it will develop other markets in Asia.



Best intentions ▪ Convenience chain 7-Eleven wants to become the premier retailer in Australia and has unveiled a brand new look for smaller, urban stores. The franchise business plans to introduce a parcels locker service and to trial digital payment options.



Future investments ▪ South Korean hypermarket operator Homeplus is considering establishing a real estate investment trust and listing it this year. Homeplus operates 142 stores in the country and was bought in 2015 by private equity firm MBK from Tesco for USD 6.1 billion.




Africa


Growth plans ▪ South African electronics group Jasco aims to double its systems integration and managed services business as it enters a new era with the appointment of a new CEO, Mark van Vuuren. The company, which already has a base in Kenya, will seek further opportunities in East Africa.