All eyes were on Walmart yesterday, as the world's largest retailer beat estimates in the holiday period, proving Amazon isn't killing its online ambitions. Yoghurt maker Danone, Australia's Woolworths and A2 Milk also revealed their results. Other news features promising partnerships, merger talks and innovative store concepts. Enjoy the read!




Wednesday, 20 February 2019





Hello ,

All eyes were on Walmart yesterday, as the world's largest retailer beat estimates in the holiday period, proving Amazon isn't killing its online ambitions. Yoghurt maker Danone, Australia's Woolworths and A2 Milk also revealed their results. Other news features promising partnerships, merger talks and innovative store concepts. Enjoy the read!

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Europe & Middle East


Eastern ventures ▪ Dubai-based retailer Majid Al Futtaim, wholly owned by Carrefour, has announced a new wholesale division targeting restaurants and hotels. Meanwhile, Indian conglomerate Future Group has signed an agreement with Arabian supermarket chain T Choithrams & Sons to sell its products across UAE, Bahrein and Qatar.



Solid performances ▪ French giant Danone delivered higher 2018 earnings as well as strong fourth quarter results, leaving the yoghurt maker confident for the year ahead. British grocer Asda has enjoyed another quarter of positive growth as it awaits the next stage in the Sainsbury's merger decision.


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Partnership potential ▪ Britain's Co-op has developed a new franchise programme for independent retailers to join the cooperative and help expand the business. Compatriot John Lewis bets on start-ups for innovation and has selected 6 firms for their focus on transforming the retail experience.




United States


Crushing the estimates ▪ Walmart has recorded its strongest holiday-quarter sales growth in a decade and posted a net income of USD 3.69 billion. Despite Amazon's looming presence, e-commerce sales at the world's largest brick-and-mortar retailer were up 43% and are expected to grow throughout the year.



Tech alliance ▪ Supermarket major Kroger and its British partner, online grocer Ocado, are going ahead with plans to create a network of 20 automated warehouses with digital and robotic capabilities. Central Florida and the Mid-Atlantic have been named as the next two areas where they will build fulfilment centres.



Perfume garden ▪ Lifestyle brand Nest Fragrances has opened its first store (with pictures) in New York, where it offers its three core product categories (home, perfume and body care) in what it labels an "enchanted fragranced garden". The design combines botanical artwork with modern material.




Asia & Australasia


Merger speculation ▪ Amazon’s China unit, which lags well beyond market leader Alibaba, is reportedly in talks with local e-commerce company Kaola, owned by Nasdaq-listed NetEase. Kaola is said to be the biggest among Chinese shopping sites that focus on imported goods.



Reporting results ▪ Australian supermarket leader Woolworths posted a small increase in profit for the six months to December 31, struggling to match food sales growth of competitor Coles. Unfazed by trade wars and a slowdown in China, New Zealand dairy company A2 Milk enjoyed record half-year profits.



Shanghai debut ▪ Starbucks China has joined forces with Italian baker Rocco Princi to launch the first Reserve Bakery Cafe in Shanghai. The concept store is dedicated to premium coffee ranges served alongside artisanal food prepared by Princi bakers onsite every day.




What to watch


Payment prospects ▪ The digital payments industry could become a USD 100 trillion market as the financial technology sector continues to grow rapidly. This is predicted by Paypal CEO Dan Schulman. The number of payments processed on the platform surged 80% year over year in the last quarter.



Stocking for Brexit ▪ Following their British retail partners, industry leaders Kellogg's and Mondelez are taking measures to protect Britons from a potential shortage of chips and chocolate due to a 'no deal' Brexit. Both companies have increased their warehouse capacities.