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Retail Update - powered by LebensmittelZeitung
Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Indian e-commerce leader Flipkart has filled its warchest to the tune of USD 1.4 billion as it readies itself for battle with online heavyweights Amazon and Alibaba. Meanwhile, Woolies, Orcado and Whole Foods are facing investor woes while an embattled Tesco hopes to score a rare win with theirs. Enjoy the read and feel free to share.


Asia & Australia
Flipkart ramps up    After months of speculation the Indian e-commerce giant has confirmed it has raised a record USD 1.4 billion to ready itself for Amazon and Alibaba’s continued focus on the region. Financing includes USD 500 million from Ebay. Flipkart is also considering whether to enter the grocery business again.  ▪
China’s taste for imports    As consumers’ appetite for imported food and drinks continues to peak, Australian and New Zealand suppliers are investing in technology to combat counterfeit goods. Meanwhile, the first-ever freight train from Britain to China, laden with whisky and baby products, started its journey along the “Silk Road” trade route. ▪
Woolies faces action   Shareholders are launching class action against the Australian grocer which could exceed AUD 100 million. They’re claiming it breached continuous disclosure requirements – failing to advise that it was behind its profit projections.  ▪
Tesco fine approved    The GBP 129 million fine imposed on the retailer following its 2014 accounting scandal has been approved. UK's supermarket leader will be hoping to draw a line under the crisis that rocked the company, and instead focus on its improved financial results in a bid to reassure investors ahead of its merger with Booker. ▪
Ireland’s supermarket wars    A group of independent grocers have joined forces to stall growth from German heavyweights, Aldi and Lidl, by attempting to block more than 20 stores in the last decade. Meanwhile, Supervalu is celebrating its return to the top spot after playing second fiddle to Dunnes for the past two months. ▪
Ocado slowdown on the cards    The British e-grocer slipped to an eight-month low (subscription only) following predictions it will struggle to fill new warehouse space. The news comes as the online grocery market in the UK faces a plateau in growth. ▪
Hackers hit Amazon    The e-commerce giant has fallen prey to online fraudsters targeting its third-party sellers. While the scale of the theft is unclear, some of those impacted are saying it has shaken their confidence in the retailer.  ▪
Whole Foods’ investor pains    Activist investors have acquired an almost 9% share in the retailer, hoping to push the company to address what they say is ‘chronic underperformance’. The group includes a number of high-powered players in the industry. ▪
Sustainability matters
Top of the charts    France, Japan and Canada have emerged as the leaders of the latest Food Sustainability Index, which ranks countries according to health, environmental and social standards. The study looked at 58 requirements relating to sustainable agriculture, nutritional challenges and food waste. ▪
Auchan Italia bans caged    Italy’s fifth largest retailer has announced that it will stop selling caged eggs in its hypermarkets and supermarkets by 2022. The decision is part of an ongoing move away from caged hen farms, with its private label already solely free range or organic. ▪

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