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Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Thursday, 02 June 2016

Hello, dear reader!
Food makers are under pressure in the US as authorities want them to reduce salt in their recipes. Coca Cola is making a foray into soy in Latin America. Dairy company Müller reveals its Scotland strategy. In Australia, Aldi is at tipping point to win the battle of the supermarkets and continues to grow in Britain. Enjoy your Thursday brief and feel free to share.

asia & australia
Competition Down Under   German discounter Aldi is the most profitable supermarket chain in Australia and best positioned to win the price war, according to analysts. Woolworths has adjusted its price strategy and is now cheaper than rival Coles. But not every retailer is frightened of Aldi, which will open 60 new outlets this year. ▪
Chinese partnerships   US tech company Microsoft is selling about 1,500 of its patents to Beijing-based device maker Xiaomi to mark the start of a long-term partnership +++ E-commerce giant Alibaba teams up with Suning, a leading electronics retailer, to enhance online shopping and improve distribution. ▪
Lulu enters Indonesia   The Dubai-based retail major has opened the first hypermarket in the capital city of Jakarta. The group has already announced plans to set up 10 hypermarkets in the next three years in the country at an initial investment of US$ 300 million. ▪
Dairy decisions in Scotland   Müller Milk & Ingredients has confirmed that it will close its smaller dairies in East Kilbride and Aberdeen, which will affect 225 jobs. But the company will also invest GBP 15 million in its dairy site in Bellshill to create a "fresh milk and ingredients centre of excellence". ▪
Dutch announcements    Amsterdam-based Spar International has elected Graham O’Connor as its new president +++ Retail giant Ahold has reported a double-digit profit growth for its first quarter, helped by strong growth in online sales in the United States and the Netherlands. ▪
Supermarket worries   Latest figures from Kantar Worldpanel reveal that Sainsbury’s has suffered its biggest decline in sales in nearly a year after its price cuts. Competitor Tesco managed to outperform its key rivals and unsurprisingly, Lidl and Aldi remained the fastest growing retailers in Britain. ▪
Acquisitions and expansions   San Francisco-based cloud computing company Salesforce takes a big step into e-commerce by investing US$ 2.8 billion to buy Demandware, a provider of e-commerce services, and drugstore chain Rite Aid has invested US$ 90 million in its new distribution centre in South Carolina, which will serve more than 1,000 stores.  ▪
Improving performance   Clothing company American Apparel is providing all its store managers with a mobile software toolset called Storeforce to schedule store associates based on traffic patterns +++ California-based footwear company UGG  has presented its new global store concept in Florida. ▪
Salty message for food makers   The US Food and Drug Administration is determined to cut average salt consumption by a third and has issued draft guidelines for major food manufacturers to reduce salt in hundreds of products. The food industry is likely to challenge the FDA's targets. ▪
Latin America
Coca Cola diversifies with soy drinks    The Atlanta-based softdrink giant and its Mexican bottler Femsa have agreed to acquire beverage producer Ades from Unilever for US$ 575 million. Ades is said to be the second-largest global maker of soy-based beverages. ▪
Lala buys in the US    Mexican food company Grupo Lala has announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire US assets from Laguna Dairy. The deal is reportedly worth US$ 246 million. It includes three production plants and a number of brands such as drinkable yogurt. ▪

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