Developing digital strategies is a vital part of success in the physical retail world. The latest e-commerce ventures by Russian grocer X5 Retail and US supermarket operator Kroger are living proof. Meanwhile, Walmart’s reality is getting virtual, while wholesaler Costco moves to support mobile payment. Enjoy the read and don't forget to share!




Wednesday, 22 August 2018





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Developing digital strategies is a vital part of success in the physical retail world. The latest e-commerce ventures by Russian grocer X5 Retail and US supermarket operator Kroger are living proof. Meanwhile, Walmart’s reality is getting virtual, while wholesaler Costco moves to support mobile payment. Enjoy the read and don't forget to share!




Europe


Russian progress ▪ As announced earlier this year, X5 Retail Group has opened a Perekrestok dark store in Moscow that will be serving as a fulfilment centre for online orders. Click here for a free LZ Retailytics report about X5 Retail. Meanwhile, competitor Magnit posted a decline in sales in Q2, citing low inflation and increased competition.



Cheese deal ▪ Dutch multinational dairy cooperative FrieslandCampina will acquire Best Cheese Holland for an undisclosed sum. The deal includes a number of cheese brands and is regarded as a response to the high consumer demand for more cheese in cooking and for dairy snacks.



Convenient decisions ▪ Portuguese retailer Continente, a unit of the Sonae Group, has bowed to customers' demand for smaller stores and opened 7 convenience outlets under the Bom Dia banner. In France, Alexandre de Palmas has been named as the new boss of Carrefour's convenience stores division.




US & Canada


Digital efforts ▪ Wholesaler Costco is now accepting Apple Pay at 750 of its stores and plans to extend the service to its gas stations. Grocer Kroger is also set to give digital offers a go. The retailer's direct-to-customer e-commerce platform, Kroger Ship, has been launched in Atlanta and will continue its aggressive rollout.



Virtual ventures ▪ Two new patent filings from Walmart show that the retailer is moving further into virtual reality. One of the filings describes a VR headset “paired with sensor-laden gloves that would allow consumers to interact with a Walmart store in a virtual world,” another one involves a fulfilment centre with robot staff.



Expanded offers ▪ While J.C. Penney is betting on a US basketball legend with the launch of the Shaquille O’Neal XLG brand, competitor Kohl's is adding another familiar brand to its offerings. Starting next year, the department store operator will launch Nine West footwear, handbags and outerwear in all its stores.




Asia


Healthy investment ▪ Alibaba Health Information Technology, a subsidiary of Chinese e-commerce leader, is set to acquire a strategic stake in local pharmaceutical company Guizhou Ensure Chain Pharmacy. Together, the two companies will explore and expand new retail models for pharmacies.



Tech takeover ▪ Indian e-commerce major Flipkart has bought Liv.ai, an artificial intelligence start-up, founded in 2015, which has built a platform that converts speech to text in 10 Indian languages. The online retailer looks to build its capabilities around so-called conversational shopping.



Acquisition approved ▪ Philippine supermarket operator Robinsons Retail has received the nod by the country's competition watchdog for its proposed plan to acquire Rustan Supercenters, which is operated by Dairy Farm International. The competition regulator approved the deal without any conditions.




Africa


Silver lining ▪ Cape Town-headquartered Pepkor Holdings, previously known as Steinhoff Africa Retail, reported a 13.8 % rise in group revenue for the nine months to the end of June, with shoppers attracted by its low prices. The clothing and furniture retailer said group revenue rose to USD 3 billion.



Franchise offer ▪ Miniso, a Japanese lifestyle designer retail brand, has announced plans to expand its business in Nigeria and wants to open 200 stores through its franchising model. Starting in 2017, the company currently operates 11 stores in the African country.