The week has started with a hiss and a roar as politics impact the retail world. Amazon has entered into America’s fray with Huawei with its Japanese banner halting sales of Huawei products, and British retail giant Marks & Spencer has vexed many with its CEO receiving a substantial pay hike, while general staff bonuses were axed. Enjoy the read!




Monday, 27 May 2019





Hello ,

The week has started with a hiss and a roar as politics impact the retail world. Amazon has entered into America’s fray with Huawei with its Japanese banner halting sales of Huawei products, and British retail giant Marks & Spencer has vexed many with its CEO receiving a substantial pay hike, while general staff bonuses were axed. Enjoy the read!




Asia & Australasia


Politics and predictions ▪ Amazon Japan has frozen direct sales of Huawei commodities following the United States’ blacklisting of the controversial Chinese tech major. Meanwhile, in South America the presidents of at least four countries have banded together against Amazon’s plan to reserve an internet domain name, and an analyst prophesises that Amazon’s shares will jump to USD 3,000 over by 2022.



Pushing ahead ▪ Chinese e-commerce powerhouse Alibaba has applied for 262 blockchain patents, as the online giant looks to use the blockchain technology to offer a system that helps companies and brands worldwide to protect their intellectual property.



American strategies ▪ Popular American fast-food joint In-N-Out Burger hosted a successful pop-up store in South Korea, with hundreds of customers lining up to taste the hamburgers which are only offered in the US. Meanwhile, coffee giant Starbucks has unveiled a cashless ordering and payment service in 300 Chinese stores.



Meeting point for foodies ▪ International trade show Thaifex start tomorrow in Bangkok and has become one of the largest food exhibitions in Southeast Asia. This year the focus will be on the latest food trends in the region, which has become a hotspot for food and beverage investments.




Europe


Bad look ▪ Marks & Spencer CEO Steve Rowe will receive a 48% pay rise this year, bringing his earnings to GBP 1.7 million. The controversial board decision comes in spite of a consistent decline in profits over the last three years, store closures and all staff bonuses for 2019 axed due to missed targets.



Green endeavours ▪ Aldi is making good on its promise to reduce its yearly plastic use by eliminating plastic screw tops from its own-label milk and cream packaging. Meanwhile, Morrisons is set to become the first British supermarket to promote plastic-free produce areas in-store following a trial that saw customers increase spending on loose fruit and veges by 40%.



Fresh initiatives ▪ British supermarket chain Co-op is trialling a new ‘click and collect’ service across five stores, with parent company John Lewis looking to roll the service out widely if successful. In Germany, discounter Lidl is responding to consumer demand to include a wider range of ethically grown bananas at affordable prices.




United States


Reporting results ▪ Shoe retailer Footlocker’s shares have tumbled a whopping 16% off the back of profit and revenue results that didn’t live up to estimates. Conversely, consumer electronics retailer Best Buy is celebrating a solid first quarter with its net income up to USD 265 million from USD 208 million the previous year.



Stress-free medication ▪ Walmart is making parents lives easier by offering FLAVORx at its Neighborhood Market pharmacies. The system lets pharmacists use patented formulas to flavour medicine according to child preference, with options including grape and bubble-gum.




Photo galleries


New beginning ▪ 130-year-old embattled mass merchandiser Sears is changing direction and hoping for a fresh start with a new ‘Home & Life’ store format. Kitchen appliances, mattresses, tools and other home-based merchandise will be the core product line. Check out pictures here.



The winner is ▪ A luxury French retailer has taken the top spot in an annual store design competition. Beauty brand L’Occitane en Provence’s Fifth Avenue store received accolades for its experiential, interactive and ‘disruptive’ installations.