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Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Friday, 22 April 2016

Hello, subscribers!
E-commerce giant Alibaba is set to expand its cloud unit on the back of two new alliances. In Europe, a bidding war has erupted for French chain Darty. And in the USA, Walmart seems to be following Germany's Metro by reducing its board in an effort to increase its ability to respond to market changes. Have a great day, and don’t forget to share.

asia & australasia
Alibaba boosts expansion   Following newly formed alliances with global consulting firm Accenture and software giant SAP China, Alibaba Cloud is planning to expand in China and Southeast Asia. The e-commerce behemoth is also set to open its first office in Australia. ▪
Siam Makro spends   This year, the Thailand-based cash-and-carry wholesaler will invest up to US$ 258 million in order to expand at home and in other countries, possibly Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam. ▪
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Tencent gives to charity   Pony Ma, the founder of Chinese Internet giant Tencent, is donating US$ 2 billion in shares to charity. This is one of the largest donations ever in the country +++ Social media giant Twitter plans to make money in Japan by offering companies tools to analyse data for research. ▪
Takeover battle for Darty   A frantic bidding war for the electronics retailer erupted on Thursday as furniture retailer Conforama, the French unit of Steinhoff International, and electronics chain Fnac increased their offers for the French chain. Darty says it will "carefully consider the announcements". ▪
Expansion in Spain   Wholesaler Gadisa has reported 4.2% growth from 2014 having reached sales of more than EUR 1,000 million in 2015 +++ Grocery retailer Caprabo plans to increase its network of franchise outlets to 100 by 2018. They currently have 42. ▪
Actions for health   Belgian retailer Colruyt says it will reduce the salt, sugar and saturated fat in its products to increase its products’ nutritional value +++ Retailers have a responsibility to lay out their stores to encourage consumers to eat more fruit and vegetables, according to the UK’s National Farmers’ Union (NFU). ▪
Walmart board shrinks   The USA’s largest retailer will reduce its board to 12 members from 15. The company hopes the move will allow it to respond faster to market changes. Stuart Walton, Walmart founder Sam Walton’s grandson, has been nominated for a seat. ▪
Sears closes more stores   In an effort to cut costs and redesign its business model, the retailer will shut down 78 stores (about 5% of its network) over the coming months. ▪
Pharmacy developments   To settle a case where it has been accused of duping New York consumers over prices, the US pharmaceutical company will pay US$ 500,000 +++ CVS Health announced that 13 new pharmacies have opened in Utah. They are all located at Target stores. ▪
Starbucks opens in Johannesburg   The coffee giant has become the latest US chain to target South Africa’s brand-conscious consumers and this week has launched its first outlet in Johannesburg. Over in its home country, Starbucks has introduced a new small-sized store format in Chicago. ▪
Supermarkets under scrutiny   South African supermarkets have been ranked by Greenpeace on their commitment to renewable energy. Endorsed by South African authorities, Woolworths came out on top. ▪
SABMiller reports gains   The brewer, which is due to be purchased by rival Anheuser-Busch InBev NV, has reported an increase in fourth-quarter beer shipments, led by growth in Africa and Latin America. ▪

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