Keeping customers happy is always a winning formula – Walmart gives it a go by making it easier for online shoppers to return their unwanted purchases, Canada's Loblaw will reward loyalty at the petrol station, while cosmetics giant L'Oreal is pairing up with Facebook to let its clientele trial virtual reality. Enjoy your Monday bulletin and have a great start to the week.




Monday, 13 August 2018





Hello ,

Keeping customers happy is always a winning formula – Walmart gives it a go by making it easier for online shoppers to return their unwanted purchases, Canada's Loblaw will reward loyalty at the petrol station, while cosmetics giant L'Oreal is pairing up with Facebook to let its clientele trial virtual reality. Enjoy your Monday bulletin and have a great start to the week.




Europe


High street dramas ▪ Britain's House of Fraser has been rescued from administration by Mike Ashley. The owner of Sports Direct purchased the struggling business for GBP 90 million. Insiders question what he will do with the chain. Fellow retailer Marks & Spencer is pushing ahead with its transformation plan, closing seven more stores.



Digital push ▪ In a bid to attract shopping traffic through social media networks, French cosmetics giant L'Oréal is teaming up with Facebook to deliver augmented reality experiences for customers. In virtual tests, shoppers can see how they might look with different lipsticks or eyeshadows.



Visionary concept ▪ The Oxford Street location of Selfridges is now home to the largest accessories hall in the world. The department store operator has completed its GBP 300 million renovation and offers a huge selection of eyewear with more than 2,000 styles of glasses and sunglasses. Click here for first pictures.




US & Canada


Focus on customer ▪ Walmart aims to make returns for unwanted items purchased from its online marketplace less of a hassle for sellers and buyers, while Canadian grocer Loblaw steps up its member loyalty programme for members by simplifying the process of earning rewards when filling up petrol.



Recruitment drive ▪ US retailer Kroger has appointed Valerie Jabbar, current head of grocery chain Ralphs, as its vice president of merchandising and named also a new marketing leader. The company's Michigan division has launched a state-wide hiring event as it looks to fill more than 600 positions.



Glyphosate decision ▪ A California jury has found agricultural giant Monsanto liable in a lawsuit filed by a man who alleged the company's glyphosate-based weed-killers, including Roundup, caused his cancer. The latest acquisition of Germany's Bayer AG was ordered to pay USD 289 million in damages.




Asia & Australia


Splitting up ▪ London-based Arcadia Group, the parent company of Topshop and Topman, has ended its collaboration with Chinese franchising partner and online retailer Shangpin. Topshop and Topman are currently exploring opportunities to further grow the brands in China.



Reporting results ▪ Australian electronics retailer JB Hi-Fi's enjoyed an annual profit jump of 12% despite challenging conditions in the home appliances market. Not so lucky is Alibaba-backed Sun Art Retail as the hypermarket operator's first-half sales dropped at a steeper pace than the year before.



Portfolio reshuffle ▪ Australian retailer Wesfarmers will sell its Kmart Tyre and Auto Service business to Germany's Continental AG for AUD 350 million. The sale comes as the conglomerate divests a whole set of assets, among them supermarket chain Coles, estimated to be worth AUD 16 billion.




Unexpected discoveries


Pet care winner ▪ Walmart claims to have 43 million pet-owning households in its customer base, which is nearly two-thirds of pet owners in the US and significantly more than the total of fellow retailers Target, Costco and Kroger. This is according to a new report by Packaged Facts.



Indians embrace Ikea ▪ Neither rain nor traffic could deter curious Hyderabadi shoppers last week from flooding Ikea's first India store, with around with around 40,000 customers joining in on opening day. Bedding solutions was the largest-selling category followed by children items.