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Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Friday, 09 December 2016

Hello, subscribers!
Alibaba has signed a deal to support Thai businesses. Discounter Lidl pursues its growth plans in the US by organising a 'hiring event'. Digital payment options such as Samsung and Google Pay are gaining momentum in the UK and Woolworths has won a legal battle in Australia, but not a moral one. These stories are featured in today's bulletin. Enjoy the read and have a great weekend.


asia & australia
Alibaba supports Thailand   Jack Ma, founder of the Chinese online giant, and the deputy prime minister of Thailand have signed an agreement to cooperate. Alibaba will assist in developing the country's digital resources and logistical systems and help small and medium-sized enterprises to expand. ▪
Paytm eyes US   The Bengaluru-based digital payment platform reported that it has surpassed its own expectations with two billion transactions this year and is set to become a universal payment app. Paytm aspires to enter the US market and will also launch a payment method for users without Internet. ▪
Woolies wins legally   The Australian retailer welcomed the judgement which dismissed claims Woolworths engaged in unethical conduct after it demanded millions in extra payments from suppliers. However, during its annual general meeting recently, the company acknowledged its treatment of suppliers had not been right. ▪
Investing in stores and homes   Serbian grocery consortium Domaći Trgovački Lanac, which currently runs 580 stores throughout Serbia, has announced it will add another 50 in 2017. In an effort to get more from its assets and compete with discounters, UK retailer Morrisons is getting into the housing business and will build 700 homes. ▪
Digital payment offers   South Korean tech giant Samsung has confirmed that its mobile payment service, Samsung Pay, is to be launched in the UK in 2017, although it was expected to go live this year. Meanwhile, Google has announced that its Android Pay system has been introduced in Ireland. ▪
McDonald's UK restructures   Amid accusations that they received unfair tax breaks in Luxembourg, the burger chain has shrugged off Brexit concerns and will create a new international holding company based in Britain, which will handle royalties outside the U.S. The company will pay UK corporation tax. ▪
usa & brazil
Lidl is hiring   After having established its North American headquarters as a base for expansion, the German discount powerhouse is hosting its first 'hiring event' in the Washington area next week. Lidl has already secured at least 50 locations for stores in the mid-Atlantic. ▪
Expansion plans   Iowa-based convenience store operator Casey’s General Stores is continuing its trajectory of growth with 84 sites under contract for construction and 15 planned acquisitions. Meanwhile, Lucky’s Market opened eight new stores this year. The organic food store chain is also set to launch at least another eight in 2017. ▪
Optimistic outlook   The Brazilian Association of Supermarkets expects overall sales in the South American country to grow by 1% this year. Sales have been stable during the second half of 2016, according to João Sanzovo Neto, the recently elected president of the association. ▪
sustainability matters
Major brands under fire   Recycling campaigners have criticised consumer brands Unilever, P&G and Kraft Heinz for not including recycling labels on all their products, which advise what kinds of packaging can be recycled. This is despite a 2009 agreement within the retail industry to do so. ▪
And the winners are ...   France, Japan and Canada are world leaders in the sustainable production, distribution and consumption of food, according to a new index published by the Barilla Foundation and The Economist Intelligence Unit.  The finding is the result of analysis of 25 countries. ▪

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