French retailer Monoprix is making the most of its Amazon partnership, compatriot Casino continues to calm down investors, and Walmart is defusing a strike in Mexico. Ikea sets up a new planning studio and some other heavyweights are also in the spotlight with their latest opening. Enjoy the read and have a great weekend!




Friday, 15 March 2019





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French retailer Monoprix is making the most of its Amazon partnership, compatriot Casino continues to calm down investors, and Walmart is defusing a strike in Mexico. Ikea sets up a new planning studio and some other heavyweights are also in the spotlight with their latest opening. Enjoy the read and have a great weekend!




Europe


Saying Goodbye ▪ The German discounter Kaufland has lost its CEO Patrick Kaudewitz (paywall/in German). But the company is facing many more difficulties than finding a new chief. Read here, what challenges are waiting for the next CEO (paywall/in German).



Growing alliance ▪ French major retail chain Monoprix saw a successful start to its partnership with e-commerce giant Amazon in Paris, and is now looking to expand the collaboration. Amazon has been looking to set up a grocery delivery service in the country for a while.



Strategy update ▪ Casino targets 10% growth per year in trading profit for its French retail business. The retailer, which is battling investor concern over its high debts, plans to sell another EUR 1 billion of assets. But despite all progress, insiders remain sceptical.



Marketing partnership ▪ Carrefour Italia, the French retailer's Italy branch, has partnered with marketing services provider JoinTag. The firm's interactive platform Kariboo will be rolled out to over 200 Carrefour markets and 40 hypermarkets, providing tracking and notification services.



Signature openings ▪ Swedish flat-pack giant Ikea has revealed 28 March as the opening date for its new planning studio in Bromley, London. Italian grocery major Gruppo Unicomm has unveiled a new mega store, located in Venice. Finally, bag specialists Cambridge Satchel has opened a flagship in London's West End.




US & Mexico


Human resources ▪ Walmart's Mexico branch seems to have narrowly avoided a strike, after reaching an agreement with the union demanding pay increases. The wholesaler has also revealed it has been flying ill employees to out of state hospitals.



Smart moves ▪ Supermarket major Kroger is making the most of major image-sharing site Pinterest, using the platform as a means for brands to advertise to shoppers. The retailer also plans to expand its autonomous delivery service in Houston.



Expansion ahead ▪ On the back of encouraging fourth-quarter results, cosmetics chain Ulta Beauty is set to go ahead with the plan to open 80 new stores in 2019 and remodel some existing outlets. Canadian furniture brand EQ3 will expand its footprint in the US with a location in Chicago.




Asia and Australasia


Flashy outlets ▪ Downtown Auckland's NZD 1 billion shopping complex is set to open in September, bringing 120 new retailers with it. Tech major Samsung is opening a new Galaxy smartphone flagship in Tokyo, celebrating the brand's 10th anniversary.



Tackling Amazon ▪ Australian e-commerce retailer Kogan seeks to strengthen its position against the online giant and has launched a new marketplace, where more than 100,000 products from brands like Microsoft, Lego, Fisher-Price and Gillette are available.



Closer look ▪ Coffee major Starbucks is continuing to ramp up its Asia expansion, in the midst of aggressive competition. There is a heavy focus on China, which makes up 40% of Starbuck's Asian market. Click here for a more in depth look.




What to watch


Growth and defeat ▪ Like many successful European ventures before it, UK supermarket giant Tesco failed in the US. Click here find out why (video). By contrast dollar store Dollar General is keeping up its pace with 975 new stores to be opened, and 1,000 to be remodelled.



Refund choices ▪ When shoppers find themselves with extra cash after tax returns, a new study has found homeware and furnishings is where they are planning to spend. Meanwhile, maybe the struggles of the slowing retail economy are actually paving the way for a rebirth.