The newly formed ‘strategic alliance’ between Tesco and Carrefour has left small suppliers concerned that they’ll be squeezed out to cut costs. Indian shopkeepers have taken to the streets in protest over Walmart’s USD 16 billion takeover of Flipkart. And Canada has responded aggressively to Trump’s steel tariffs – taking aim at staples such as chocolate and coffee. Enjoy the read.




Tuesday, 03 July 2018





Hello ,

The newly formed ‘strategic alliance’ between Tesco and Carrefour has left small suppliers concerned that they’ll be squeezed out to cut costs. Indian shopkeepers have taken to the streets in protest over Walmart’s USD 16 billion takeover of Flipkart. And Canada has responded aggressively to Trump’s steel tariffs – taking aim at staples such as chocolate and coffee. Enjoy the read.




US & Canada


Trade war ▪ Canada has retaliated against the Trump administration’s new steel taxes, by imposing duties of their own on a range of American goods, including ketchup, whiskey, and maple syrup. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is urging Canadians to carefully consider their purchases of American products.



Customer appeal ▪ Amazon Go’s check-out free concept is likely to be embraced by shoppers, with 75% of consumers surveyed saying they would be extremely likely to shop at such a store if one opened locally. Conversely, Walmart is going for a more personal approach with the creation of a new executive role specifically targeted at improving customer service.



Racial profiling ▪ Advisers have warned Starbucks that greater staff training measures among its 175,000 employees need to be taken to deal with racial bias. The coffee giant has been advised to conduct a “Civil Rights audit” across its 8000 stores.




Europe & Africa


Strategic pairing ▪ Suppliers are worried following the news of a formal alliance between European grocery majors Carrefour and Tesco, with an analyst suggesting small suppliers and providers of own-label products have the most to lose.



New openings ▪ Spar Zimbabwe has opened a new store in the country’s industrial capital Kwekwe. It is the grocery chain’s 14th store in the nation, and will create 70 new jobs in the community. Meanwhile, Russian food retailer X5 has reached a milestone with the opening of its 1500th Pyaterochka store in Moscow.



Downward spiral ▪ South African retailer Steinhoff’s interim results reveal a GBP 530 million loss, following a legal scandal earlier in the year. Meanwhile, the shares of online mattress retailer Eve Sleep have plummeted 60% after it was announced that sales were significantly lower than expected.




Asia


Thinking ahead ▪ Alibaba is hosting 29 African-based businesses at its Hangzhou headquarters to allow participants to experience the dramatic effect e-commerce has had on China. The online giant is also set to spend big on a new retail strategy and to combine its assets following the acquisition of Ele.me in April.



Shopkeepers protest ▪ Indian shopkeepers opposed to Walmart’s acquisition of Flipkart have been encouraged by a local lobby group to protest against the move with a host of sit-ins. According to witnesses, attendance fell far short of the one million protestors expected.



Growing capital ▪ Israeli-Singaporean start-up Trax has raised USD 125 million in funding as it heads towards an initial public offering. The tech company’s image-recognition technology is used by retailers including Coca-Cola and Nestlé to track their products on the shelves. [paywall]




Future thinking


Expectations and trends ▪ With the first half of the year officially over, check out an analyst’s prediction of what investors can expect for the retail sector in the next six months. And if you’re interested in future thinking, take a look at this video showcasing the ‘Top Four Trends’ transforming the way we shop.



Instagram college ▪ The ubiquitous image-sharing app is offering a master class in how to make the big bucks from the social media tool. Click here to find out what tips and tricks these courses are offering to leading execs and marketing managers.