It's a mixed bag today, with redundancies and bailouts on one hand, and partnerships, purchases and progressive policies on the other. Jamie 'Naked Chef' Oliver has had to dig into his own pockets to save one of his business ventures, while Microsoft is using its mighty influence to ensure contractors give employees paid parental leave. Enjoy the read and have a great week.




Monday, 03 September 2018





Hello ,

It's a mixed bag today, with redundancies and bailouts on one hand, and partnerships, purchases and progressive policies on the other. Jamie 'Naked Chef' Oliver has had to dig into his own pockets to save one of his business ventures, while Microsoft is using its mighty influence to ensure contractors give employees paid parental leave. Enjoy the read and have a great week.




United States


Double shot ▪ Coca-Cola has bought British coffee chain Costa for USD 5.1 billion, as the company broadens its reach into healthier drink options, and prepares to take on the likes of international coffee powerhouses Starbucks and Nestlé. Costa was last acquired for GBP 19 million by Whitbread in 1995.



Legal letter ▪ Walmart has run into trouble with its recent acquisition of outdoor gear retailer Moosejaw, and the on-selling of its affiliated brands. Premium outdoor-wear brand Black Diamond has issued the retail giant with a 'cease and desist' letter, objecting to its upmarket merchandise being linked with the discounter branding of Walmart.



Oh baby! ▪ Microsoft has announced that its suppliers will be required to offer employees paid parental leave for a minimum of three months, and have stressed that failure to comply would result in losing the tech giant's business. The move was inspired by family leave legislation passed into law last year.




Europe


Crunch time ▪ Homebase is set to close 42 stores and cut 1500 jobs as part of a rescue package that will prevent the company from becoming bankrupt. Landlords have also agreed to rent reductions of up to 90% at a further 70 of the DIY chain's stores.



Poor harvest ▪ Ukraine and Russia are bracing themselves after excessive rain has affected the quality of milling wheat, which may result in export restrictions. Fears are rife that the cost of bread in both countries will increase, on top of already inflated food prices.



Rescue mission ▪ Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver has shelled out GBP 13 million of his own money to rescue his Italian restaurant chain from bankruptcy. In a further attempt to save the business, 'The Naked Chef' has closed 12 of the eateries and made 600 staff redundant.




Asia & Australasia


Deals and developments ▪ The Indonesian government has struck a deal with Alibaba to look at using the Chinese online giant's infrastructure to increase exports. Rumours are rife that Alibaba founder Jack Ma is also close to an agreement with Russia.



Profit surge ▪ The internal restructuring of convenience store chain 7-Eleven Malaysia has paid off with the company's net profit jumping by nearly 30% in the last quarter. Newly appointed CEO Colin Harvey has said there is still room for improvement.



Jobs axed ▪ Upmarket Australian department store Myer has slashed 30 management positions to cut costs, streamline roles and operate a more consumer-focused structure. The changes are also an effort to help the company to improve the financial performance.




Strange but true


Sizzling hot ▪ A pork producer has hit back at edgy fashion-and-skate label Supreme over clear plagiarism of its logo. In a hilarious retaliation, Farmland Foods has flooded Instagram with ageing farmers decked out in ultra-cool Supreme clothing to poke fun at the disingenuous use of its branding. Check out the pictures here.



Wine not? ▪ Put down those corkscrews, canned wine sales are exploding across America with retailers seeing an increase of 43%. The industry is estimated to be worth USD 45 million and growing, thanks to millennial drinkers who value the portability and tactful consumption of cans, over the traditional glass bottles.