Just days after it announced a partnership with online grocer Ocado, US supermarket giant Kroger decided to bite into meal kits with the acquisition of Home Chef. Australian retailer Wesfarmers ends its disastrous venture into Britain, and Amazon has introduced an artwork platform in India. Enjoy the read and have a relaxing weekend.




Friday, 25 May 2018





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Just days after it announced a partnership with online grocer Ocado, US supermarket giant Kroger decided to bite into meal kits with the acquisition of Home Chef. Australian retailer Wesfarmers ends its disastrous venture into Britain, and Amazon has introduced an artwork platform in India. Enjoy the read and have a relaxing weekend.




USA & Africa


Focus on foodservice ▪ Cincinnati-based supermarket chain Kroger is purchasing meal-kit service Home Chef, which will complement the grocer’s own Prep+Pared line and sent shares of meal-kit pioneer Blue Apron on a new high. Just recently, rival Albertsons announced to roll its Plated meal kits nationwide.



Encouraging results ▪ San Francisco-based retailer Williams-Sonoma beat the estimates in its first quarter amid a healthy increase in e-commerce sales and another strong performance by its West Elm brand. Off-price retailer Stein Mart has also reason to rejoice as improvements in store inventory contributed to its earnings.



Mobile money ▪ In partnership with Standard Bank, Google and global financial technology company Celbux, South African chain Shoprite has introduced a mobile transactional banking service named ‘Shoprite Money’ for its customers.The service will be available to everyone, not only those with existing bank accounts.




Europe


Exits in Britain ▪ Australian retail group Wesfarmers is abandoning its flailing UK expansion and will sell the 200-plus chain of former Homebase stores for a ‘nominal amount’ to British company Hilco. Meanwhile, embattled discount retailer Poundworld has announced to close 117 of its 355 stores.



Nestlé streamlines ▪ The Swiss food giant plans to combine its scientific research operations into a single unit in an attempt to speed up development of new products at a time when competition from smaller rivals is intensifying. The new unit will be based in Lausanne and employ around 800 people.



Russian announcements ▪ VTB, the country's second-largest bank, has sold a stake in grocer Magnit, worth EUR 870 million, to Marathon group, which is owned by Russian businessmen. Meanwhile, rival X5 Retail Group is testing labelling technologies to ensure the consistent quality of its products.




Asia & Australia


Connecting artists ▪ Amazon India announced the launch of a dedicated store for 'Fine Arts' on its platform, giving artists an avenue to showcase their products and helping customers to choose from a broader range of arts selections – from limited print editions to original paintings.



Leadership reshuffle ▪ Bolstering its turnaround team, Australian department store chain Myer has appointed Allan Winstanley as its new chief merchandise offer. Winstanley was an Executive Director at UK chain House of Fraser for nine years and was most recently president of Sears in the US.



Beating the estimates ▪ Lenovo posted its fastest pace of revenue growth in more than two years. The Hong Kong-based computer manufacturer reported a sales jump of 11% to USD 10.6 billion, however, net income plunged and analysts doubt whether the company can maintain the momentum.




Analysis & Expectations


Big and beautiful ▪ While hypermarkets represent the second largest grocery retail channel in Europe, their performances vary significantly between geographies, retailers and store concepts. LZ Retailytics forecasts that the segment will continue to grow in the next five years. Click here to get the latest report.



Mall mix reshaped ▪ A new report from global think tank Coresight Research predicts that mall operators will move away from an apparel focus to create retail-and-services ecosystems that include a variety of uses. Five trends will prompt these changes, among them consolidation and the maturation of millennials.