Amazon is once again wearing the US President’s wrath as he urgently calls for higher shipping costs to be imposed on the online giant. Alibaba is weighing in on the mobile payment services battle in Thailand. Expressions of interest are being sought over the Asda-Sainsbury’s merger, and Denise Morrison of Campbell Soup has stood down unexpectedly. Enjoy the read.




Monday, 21 May 2018





Hello ,

Amazon is once again wearing the US President’s wrath as he urgently calls for higher shipping costs to be imposed on the online giant. Alibaba is weighing in on the mobile payment services battle in Thailand. Expressions of interest are being sought over the Asda-Sainsbury’s merger, and Denise Morrison of Campbell Soup has stood down unexpectedly. Enjoy the read.




America


Pricey post ▪ President Donald Trump is pressing Postmaster General Megan Brennan to double the prices the postal service charges Amazon and other similar companies for shipping parcels. She has so far rejected the suggestions explaining that these arrangements must be reviewed by a regulatory commission.



Public offering ▪ BJ’s Wholesale Club is registering its stock for an IPO, in a bid to take the company public again. The USD 12.8 billion warehouse operator intends to use the takings from the offering to repay a USD 735 million debt. The company owns 215 warehouse clubs.



Abrupt exit ▪ Campbell Soup CEO Denise Morrison has suddenly stepped down after seven years at the top. At the same time the company has said it will be reviewing many of its brands following a grim outlook for the year as it posted a loss of USD 393 million last week.




Europe


Bleak forecast ▪ Marks and Spencer are poised to announce a second successive drop in revenue. This coupled with the retailer’s shares falling almost a quarter in the last year is grim news for the 134-year-old company. Staff will find out today whether their store is closing.



Crunch time ▪ Premium potato chip brand Tyrells has been acquired from US manufacturer Hershey by UK confectionary company KP Snacks for an undisclosed figure. Hershey bought the brand less than year ago from Amplify Snacks Brands for GBP 300 million, which first acquired it in 2016.



Speak up ▪ All parties likely to be affected by the Asda-Sainsbury’s deal will have a chance to express their views to the UK Competition and Markets Authority who have called for submissions on the merger. Meanwhile, Walmart-owned Asda celebrates its fourth consecutive quarter of rising sales.




Asia & Australasia


Ambitious expansions ▪ Alibaba has entered the competition to dominate mobile payment services in Thailand. The Chinese group is supporting TrueMoney, a rival of market leader Rabbit Line Pay. In China, Alibaba’s Hema Fresh Market is looking to expand its catering options in a collaboration with regional restaurant operators.



Done deal ▪ Chinese retail major JD.com has partnered with New South Wales-based Metcash to expand its fresh food offerings to a wider market. The grocery wholesaler’s brand Fresh Pantry will introduce its Australian and New Zealand products to Chinese shoppers on the e-commerce platform.



Mocha in Myanmar ▪ Starbucks is heading to Yangoon following the Myanmar Investment Commission’s endorsement. The American coffee franchise is set to invest USD 6 million and open 20 outlets across the country within the next year.




Strange but true


Fragrance infringement ▪ Hasbro has officially trademarked Play-doh’s scent. Described as a sweet, slightly musky, vanilla fragrance, the iconic dough is now able to have its “invaluable connection point between the brand and fans” protected from imitators.



Feet treat ▪ Consumers are increasingly choosing comfort over style, and women’s footwear is no exception. High heels appear to be on the way out according to NPD Group’s retail tracking service. In the last year stiletto sales have dropped 11%, while demand for women’s sneakers has increased by 37%.