US grocer Sprouts ponders about curbside grocery pick-up, Amazon orders thousands of vans for its fleet and Walmart is set to test independent drivers, while social media platform Instagram is about to launch a shopping app. Across the Atlantic, Russian retailer X5 Retail teams up for a parcel locker network and an Israeli supermarket bets on robots. Enjoy the read!




Thursday, 06 September 2018





Hello ,

US grocer Sprouts ponders about curbside grocery pick-up, Amazon orders thousands of vans for its fleet and Walmart is set to test independent drivers, while social media platform Instagram is about to launch a shopping app. Across the Atlantic, Russian retailer X5 Retail teams up for a parcel locker network and an Israeli supermarket bets on robots. Enjoy the read!




US & Canada


Delivery competition ▪ Organic grocer Sprouts Farmers Market, which operates more than 300 stores, plans to test curbside grocery pickup. The industry's heavyweights are also intensifying their efforts in the sector – Amazon has ordered 20,000 Mercedes-Benz vans and Walmart trials a crowd-sourced platform, which works with independent drivers.



Fashion push ▪ Amazon is not only busy on the delivery front, but also expanding its fashion empire. The online powerhouse from Seattle has announced to collaborate with J.Crew, a New York-based speciality retailer, to sell items from the company's discount line that will cost "under USD 300".



Reshuffle casualties ▪ GlaxoSmithKline will cut about 650 positions in the United States related to a global restructuring programme. The savings from these cuts will help fund increases in research and development. The British drug maker employs about 15,000 people in North America.




Europe


Click-and-collect alliance ▪ Leading Russian retailer X5 Retail and Sovcombank, one of the largest privately owned banks in the country, want to form a joint venture for delivering packages ordered from online stores to a network of parcel lockers. X5 Retail has filed a request with the regulatory authorities.



Store premieres ▪ Danish discounter Netto has announced the opening of a new-look store in Aarhus with a revitalised 'futuristic' concept. Over in France, South Korean department store chain Shinsegae debuts with a multi-brand boutique, Boon the Shop, in the iconic shopping institution Le Bon Marche.



Bread winner ▪ British sandwich chain Pret a Manger reported a 13.2% increase in sales, to GDP 878.5 million, in the year ending December 2017, prior to its GDP 1.5 billion acquisition by JAB Holding, three months ago. During the period, the company opened 58 new stores and created over 1,150 new jobs worldwide.




Asia & Australia


Mobile shopping ▪ Jumping on a popular trend, supermarket giant Woolworths will start an Australia-first trial of "shop and go" technology at one of its stores in Sydney, allowing customers to scan groceries with their smartphones as they shop and leave without going through a checkout.



Indian initiatives ▪ Supermarket company Future Retail plans to open 20 Big Bazaar stores this year and is also set to increase its small-format network. Meanwhile, opposition against the billion-dollar Walmart-Flipkart deal is intensifying. Traders' body CAIT has announced to organise a 90-day nationwide protest.



Lucrative region ▪ Facebook will invest USD 1 billion to build its first data centre in Asia in Singapore. The social networking service faces some headwinds in the US as a new report shows that a quarter of their users have deleted the app and nearly half of them have taken a break from the platform.




Virtual World


Encouraging e-commerce ▪ Instagram is developing a standalone shopping app allowing users to buy goods directly from the platform from merchants they follow. The Facebook-owned social media service has been slowly introducing shopping features to its platform recently.



Robots to the rescue ▪ Israeli supermarket chain Rami Levy signed a deal with Tel Aviv-based start-up CommonSense Robotics, to establish 12 distribution sites throughout Israel powered by robot systems for use in storing and packing online grocery orders.