Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung

Hello, dear reader!
Yesterday it looked as if ailing Japanese company Sharp had secured a takeover from Foxconn, today things took a turn and the latter demands some clarification first. We will keep you in the loop. In other news, China's Huawei is teaming up with Germany's Leica, and French retailer Carrefour donates millions of meals to food banks worldwide. On this positive note, we wish you a relaxed weekend. 

asia & south pacific
Woolies suffers huge loss   The Australian retailer's decision to pull the plug on its Masters hardware chain comes at a cost as it reported a AU$ 1 billion loss. Newly appointed chief executive Brad Banducci is under pressure to revive the business. Meanwhile, competitor Wesfarmers has confirmed it is interested in about 15 Masters’ sites. ▪
Store openings and closures   Troubled electronics retailer Dick Smith is about to shut down its entire store estate of 363 stores, eliminating 2,890 staff jobs Down Under. Home-improvement retailer Bunnings is better off as it benefits from a renovation and construction boom in New Zealand, where it plans to open new stores. ▪
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Foxconn delays deal   Taiwanese contract manufacturer Foxconn has put its US$ 6.2 billion acquisition of Japanese electronics maker Sharp on hold, saying it had been surprised by new information and needed more time to study the details. ▪
Huawei partners with Leica  The iconic German camera company and the Chinese telecom giant announced a strategic partnership to reinvent smartphone photography. The tie-up will include combined research and development, design, engineering, marketing and retail distribution. ▪
Lidl expands in Serbia   During a meeting with Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic, representatives of German discount powerhouse Lidl announced that the company plans to open 100 stores in the country +++ Serbia is also the target of Polish footwear retailer CCC (paywall), which plans to open 423 new stores this year. ▪
Growing in tough times   Italian supermarket chain Famila reported a 2.53% increase in sales during 2015 and will open another 19 stores this year +++ Although German consumer goods giant Henkel saw a fourth quarter growth, its departing CEO, Kasper Rorsted, expects tough times ahead for its successor. ▪
Millions of meals from Carrefour   The French retailer donated almost 4,953 tonnes of foodstuffs – equivalent to 10 million meals – to food banks around the world between October and December in 2015. This was part of Carrefour’s third international Food Bank collection campaign. ▪
usa & canada
Kohl's changes strategy   After a disappointing 20% drop in fourth-quarter profits, the Wisconsin-based retailer said that it will close 18 underperforming stores this year and open seven small-format and two off-price stores and enter the outlet space with 12 Fila stores. ▪
Home Depot connects   The Atlanta-based home improvement retailer, which reported strong earnings this week, is extending its 'interconnected customer experience' philosophy across all channels and is set to improve and enhance its mobile offerings. ▪
Poor results for Sears and Loblaw   Department store company's Sears' fourth-quarter loss has widened despite deep cost cuts, while Canadian grocery and pharmacy retailer Loblaw admits that its profit for the same period was down by more than one-third compared with the prior year. ▪
Difficult market conditions   Despite a high unemployment rate and a slowing economy, South African retailer Massmart, majority-owned by Walmart, has reported a 0.8% rise in its full-year profit, while its rival and the region's biggest retailer, Shoprite has seen an increase in turnover growth of 8.8%.  ▪
Pick n Pay tests new format   The Cape Town-based retailer tries its luck in the informal retail trade sector by converting traditional spaza-shops into modern micro stores and will open its first-ever spaza-to-store pilot shop in Soweto this week. ▪

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