A lot of wheeling and dealing is afoot today, with acquisitions, alliances and closures grabbing our attention. Amazon moves out of China, and Smart & Final is bought out for a second time. Meanwhile, German Retail Blog has a look at Europe's retail top 50. We at RetailUpdate wish all of you an excellent long Easter weekend, and will return on Tuesday. Read on and have a great holiday.




Thursday, 18 April 2019





Hello ,

A lot of wheeling and dealing is afoot today, with acquisitions, alliances and closures grabbing our attention. Amazon moves out of China, and Smart & Final is bought out for a second time. Meanwhile, German Retail Blog has a look at Europe's retail top 50. We at RetailUpdate wish all of you an excellent long Easter weekend, and will return on Tuesday. Read on and have a great holiday.




United States


Amazon update ▪ The e-commerce giant is preparing to close its Chinese domestic marketplace due to lack of profit. Customers in the country will still be able to order overseas goods from several countries through Amazon's global store. Also, social media massive Facebook is in the process of developing voice AI that could rival Amazon's Alexa.



Big purchases ▪ For the second time, equity firm Apollo is buying out food and supply store franchise Smart & Final. The deal will equal roughly USD 1.1 billion, and include debt. Meanwhile, the Martha Stewart brand has been sold to Marquee Brands.



Delivering services ▪ Grocery major Kroger has greenlit its driverless delivery program in Houston, Texas after a successful trial. The city will be the second market for the service. Pharmacy chain Walgreens and department store retailer Nordstrom are also making delivery headway, turning stores into hubs for online order pickup.



Coffee time ▪ Newly ambitious chocolate retailer Godiva is spreading its wings, with 2,000 cafes planned to be opened internationally. The cafes will feature grab-and-go style dining, with the first outlet to be opened this week in Manhattan. Specialty roaster Peet's Coffee is keeping up the pace, expanding its order ahead service.




Europe


Drink up ▪ French alcoholic beverage label Pernod Ricard has acquired Italian gin brand Malfy. The upscale gin is already respected in several markets, and has strong growth potential for its new owners. Softdrink major PepsiCo has seen higher than projected first-quarter results.



Frosty developments ▪ Finger food retailer Frostkrone is keeping busy, appointing frozen-food sector veteran Roman Wedel as its new CFO. The company is also preparing to present a swathe of flavoursome innovations from 'Lava Bites' to 'Crack ‘N’ Cheese Cubes' in Amsterdam this May.



Cheese news ▪ The sale of UK dairy business Dairy Crest to Canada's industry giant Saputo has been completed. The purchase, which values Dairy Crest at EUR 1.12 billion, will allow Saputo to expand internationally and in the UK, through the retailer's established brand strength.




Asia


Pet popularity ▪ JD.com has signed a partnership with China Pet Foods. The online retailer will provide the pet food leader with technology services and data on market trends and consumer profiles. Despite China's retail malaise, the pet industry is currently booming.



Game on ▪ Tech retail titan Tencent is reportedly looking to develop its own gaming phone, a potential entrance into the gaming hardware market. The retailer's gaming business has seen struggling growth, largely due to China's increasing scrutiny of the industry.




Easter reads


Leading the pack ▪ Data analysis platform LZ Retailytics has taken a look at the top 50 retailers in Europe, and Germany's Schwarz Group has taken the top prize with 2018 sales of EUR 113 billion. French multinational Carrefour has come in a close second, with discounter Aldi closing the gap. Check out German Retail Blog's breakdown of the list.



Holiday traffic ▪ Footfall is set to improve over the long Easter weekend, with results showing high streets, shopping centres, and retail parks will see a year on year increase in shoppers. Good Friday and Easter Monday are expected to see the highest amount of people, however the trend of subdued spending is likely to continue.