Online trade is thriving, with Apple hitting the gaming world, and Amazon supporting computer science. Alibaba and JD.com hit hard with software. Meanwhile, grocery chain Mere rivals established discounters in Germany and industry giants tackle environment issues. Enjoy the read!




Thursday, 31 January 2019





Hello ,

Online trade is thriving, with Apple hitting the gaming world, and Amazon supporting computer science. Alibaba and JD.com hit hard with software. Meanwhile, grocery chain Mere rivals established discounters in Germany and industry giants tackle environment issues. Enjoy the read!




Europe


Discount future ▪ Russian retailer Torgservis's line of Mere supermarkets has opened in Leipzig. Mere is looking for a way to stay in the German discount market, with some products undercutting traditional discounter prices. Click here for a look around the store (picture gallery, in German).



Merger measures ▪ The long-awaited merger of UK supermarkets Sainsbury's and Asda is anticipating possible store-disposal conditions from the Competition and Markets Authority. The stores will be able to survive even if 132 are disposed, according to Sainsbury's broker.



Consumer concerns ▪ After a recent survey, Brexit seems to be the biggest cloud on the consumer horizon, with almost half finding it their top worry for 2019. 500 jobs are potentially at risk, as UK alcohol retailer Oddbins considers its finance options.



New concept ▪ Carrefour Polska, the Polish leg of multinational Carrefour, has introduced the 'Little Farmer' sections of organic children's food into several stores across the country.




USA and Canada


Swift streaming ▪ Tech giant Apple is tapping the lucrative gaming industry, developing its own streaming service. This will allow users to play by subscription, without need for a download. Apple is reportedly also talking with game developers about acting as a publisher.



Smart funding ▪ Amazon is putting its weight behind computer science. The e-retailer is backing computer science classes in upwards of 130 schools across New York City. Amazon is also preparing to launch its Middle Eastern marketplace, undercutting subsidiary Souq.



Walmart developments ▪ Walmart subsidiary Flipkart is voicing concerns over India's new online trade regulations. The e-retailer has warned 'customer disruption' will ensue if the restrictions are not delayed. The discount grocer is also getting the one-up on Amazon with online activewear, partnering with sportswear retailer Fanatics.




Asia


Online players ▪ E-commerce heavyweight Alibaba hits a milestone with its digital wallet Alipay, reaching 230 million users daily. Rival e-retailer JD.com and Thai partner, holding company Central Group, are launching their own e-wallet, Dolfin. The software aims to reach five million users by the year's end.



Coffee culture ▪ Caffeinated franchise Starbucks is seeing strong results in the Asia-Pacific region with China being no exception. However, Starbucks China's operating margin dropped to 18 percent. CEO Kevin Johnson has stated the company plans for increased growth in the country.




Eco-friendly Franchises


Organic moves ▪ French retail major Carrefour, among others, is setting up a crowdfunding drive to further organic farming. The move will be backed with EUR 10 million, and aims to reach 100 million over four years. In another environmental move, British grocer Selfridges will be releasing a range of insect-flour edibles.



Plastic progress ▪ Electronics giant Samsung is furthering the plastic revolution, with an increased plan to cut back on plastic use in the coming year. The Korean retailer will start switching plastic packaging for recycled or paper alternatives, among other actions.