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Sam's Club consolidates 21 brands into Member's Mark

Peapod inks in partnership to customize meal boxes

Canada: Loblaw to sell all its gas stations
Retailer Loblaw is selling all 213 of its gas stations across the country for $540m to Brookfield Business Partners and its partners. The proposed deal is subject to certain conditions, but is expected to close in this year’s third quarter. (thestar.com)

US: Peapod inks in partnership with meal planning tool

Ahold’s US’s e-commerce division Peapod on Wednesday said it has teamed with DinnerTime.com, a meal planning technology company that generates customized recipes and shopping lists for busy families. In the 24 U.S. markets served by Peapod, DinnerTime members can select Peapod as their desired grocer. The website recommends meals based upon each household’s tastes, budget, time constraints, health concerns, food allergies, and other dietary restrictions and preferences.  (supermarketnews.com)

US: Sam's Club consolidates 21 brands into Member's Mark
Over the last year Sam's Club has focused on consolidating 21 different private brands into one, Member's Mark. As part of this process, the retailer reviewed the entire private brand line-up to ensure that products emphasise both quality and value. This has supported the continued growth of the brand, with sales reaching $10bn annually, representing just over 17% of total sales. In the last year, 94% of its members have purchased at least one private brand item. (igd.com)

US: More Marsh stores to close
Marsh will be closing seven more stores in May, including three in Indianapolis. The company says they are closing the stores because of "sustained weak performance." "This is a very difficult decision for us as we have been serving these communities for many years and have many great relationships with our valued customers," said a company spokesperson. The company says they are trying to find positions for associates who wish to remain with Marsh at one of their other stores. (theindychannel.com)

Walmart invites suppliers to fight CO2
Wal-Mart has launched a "sustainability platform" that will invite its suppliers to join the retail giant in pledging to cut greenhouse gas emissions from operations and supply chains. Known as Project Gigaton, Wal-Mart said on Wednesday that an "emissions reduction toolkit" would be given to suppliers, with the aim of slashing one gigaton of emissions by 2030. (cnbc.com)

Target, Wegmans honored for retail sustainability

The Professional Retail Store Maintenance Association (PRSM) has presented Target Corp. and Wegmans Food Markets with its 2017 PRSM Innovation in Sustainability Award. Recognizing PRSM retail member companies with outstanding sustainability programs that deliver exceptional results, the honors were bestowed April 20 during the PRSM2017 National Conference in the association’s hometown of Dallas. (progressivegrocer.com)

Lower GR potato returns to Ontario grocery stores
Following a highly successful launch in 2016, Canadian produce company EarthFresh is bringing its lower glycemic response (GR)* Carisma potato back to Ontario grocery retailers for an extended season. (potatopro.com)

Walmart Canada laying off employees

Walmart Canada is laying off an unspecified number of employees as it undergoes a restructuring. Spokesman Alex Roberton would not disclose how many employees would lose their jobs. He denied a media report that 475 workers would be let go, saying the actual number is lower. (canadiangrocer.com)

US: Hy-Vee to focus on health
Hy-Vee recently announced it restructured corporate departments to focus on growth in its dedicated health and wellness sections, restaurant operations and information technology, according to a company release. The process will add 70 new staff positions in the weeks ahead. Twenty jobs will go towards developing HealthMarkets, Hy-Vee’s dedicated health departments, and the store's Market Grille restaurant concept. (fooddive.com)

Japan: Amazon launches same-day delivery of food
E-commerce giant Amazon Japan G.K. is expanding its same-day Prime Now delivery service to include cooked meals and other items. Amazon is also reportedly considering a rollout of same-day delivery service of fresh food including fish and vegetables, although a spokeswoman for Amazon Japan on Wednesday declined to comment on the service. (japantimes.co.jp)

Walmart's Asda remains UK's cheapest grocer
Asda remains Britain's cheapest supermarket while Tesco is doing the most to stave off any Brexit-fuelled price rises, according to new research from UBS. The investment bank on Wednesday published a monitor of prices at Britain's major supermarkets in March. (businessinsider.com)

It's official: Amazon is coming to Australia
The global retail giant has confirmed it will be making its way to Australian shores, making good on months of speculation and and hot takes from Australian media outlets. "Amazon Web Services launched an Australian region in 2012, we launched a Kindle Store on Amazon.com.au in 2013, and we now have almost 1,000 employees in the country," the company said in a statement. "The next step is to bring a retail offering to Australia, and we are making those plans now." The company has also been on a hiring spree in recent months, looking to fill more than 100 jobs -- including in its grocery delivery division, Amazon Fresh. (cnet.com)

Brazil's GPA sees 9.5% growth in food sales in Q1 2017

Brazilian retailer GPA ended the first quarter of 2017 with net total food sales of R$ 10.55bn, up 9.5% year-on-year. Of the total, the Multivarejo channel accounted for R$ 6.51bn (+0.4%), while Assaí contributed with R$ 4.03bn (+28.8%). Net same-store sales grew by 5.6% in the reference period. Assaí saw same-store growth reached 12.9% (esmmagazine.com)

UK: Marks & Spencer says it plans to close 6 British stores
Marks & Spencer said on Thursday it planned to close six stores as part of a review of its UK estate that was first detailed last year. M&S said in November it planned to close about 30 UK stores selling clothing, homewares and food and downsize or convert another 45 into food stores over five years. M&S also said on Thursday it will open 34 new food stores and two clothing, home and food stores over the next six months. (Reuters)

SA: Woolworths tops SA customer satisfaction index
The latest South African Customer Satisfaction Index (SAcsi) for supermarkets, reveals that customers remain highly satisfied with the country’s major shopping retailers. With a substantially higher score than the industry average of 76.2, Woolworths achieved the most satisfied customers with a score of 82.1 on the index and is the only supermarket with a marked increase compared to its 2015 average of 80.7. Checkers, with a score of 77.2, and Pick n Pay at 76.5 both remained above average while Shoprite and Spar trailed with scores of 75.5 and 75.2 respectively. (businesstech.co.za)

Spain: DIA and Eroski establish JV for private labels
Spain-based DIA and Eroski have signed an agreement to establish a new company that will focus on the joint purchasing of private label products. The creation of the joint venture follows the retailers' previous announcement setting out their plan to establish the company. The new joint venture, in which both companies will hold a 50% stake, will be called Red Libra Trading Services. However, the announcement from the two companies stresses that the ownership structure could change in future to accommodate the possible addition of new members. (igd.com)

UK: Tesco offloads another chain

Tesco is selling its opticians business in the UK and Ireland to leading optical specialist, Vision Express. Commenting on the disposal, UK CEO Matt Davies said: "This allows us to further simplify and strengthen our UK business. (igd.com)

Japan: Convenience stores moving towards full automation

Five major convenience store operators in Japan, Seven & I Holdings, East Japan Railway, Lawson, Ministop and FamilyMart Uny, will introduce self-checkout counters that can scan all items in a basket, instead of one by one. It is estimated that an investment of up to JPY100 bn (US$918.8m) will be needed for the implementation of the technology in 50,000 stores (igd.com)

Scottish retailers 'disappointed' as sales slide
Total sales in March were 2.1% down on a year ago, according to the Scottish Retail Consortium-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor. Non-food sales dropped 5.2%, food sales, however, were up 1.8%. (BBC)

Vietnam: Domestic businesses eye rural retail market

Statistics from the Ministry of Industry and Trade revealed that foreign-invested companies make up some 17% of retail market share via trade centres and supermarkets and 70% via convenience stores. President of the Vietnam Retailers Association Dinh Thi My Loan told the Công Thương (Industry & Trade) newspaper that the Vietnamese retail market had become more attractive since the country signed free trade agreements and policies attracting customers had been implemented. Please, click here to read the article at english.vietnamnet.vn.

Swedish Axfood Q1 sales increase
The Swedish retail and wholesale group Axfood reported consolidated net sales amounting to SEK 10,639m (€1,106m), an increase of 3.2%, and operating profit of SEK 397m (€41m), corresponding to an operating margin of 3.7% for this year's Q1. Net profit for the period was SEK 309m (€32m), and earnings per share were SEK 1.47. (esmmagazine.com)

Dutch Sligro reports increased sales in Q1
Dutch food group Sligro's sales for the first quarter of 2017 were €669m, an increase of 5.8% compared with Q1 2016. Excluding the effect of acquisitions, sales were up by 2.5%. Food Retail's sales were down 0.2% in the first quarter. Like-for-like consumer sales at EMTÉ supermarkets declined 1.2% in the first quarter. (esmmagazine.com)

Russia: Lenta's Q1 sales increase more than 15%

Russian retailer Lenta posted a total sales increase of 17.2% in Q1 2017 to RUR 77.9bn (€1.29bn), compared with RUR 66.5bn (€1.1bn) in Q1 2016. Lenta also reported a like-for-like increase of 1.7% compared to the same period last year. (esmmagazine.com)

Singapore: FairPrice's bid to cut fresh produce waste pays off
Efforts to curb food waste at NTUC FairPrice have borne fruit - the supermarket chain discarded 48 tonnes less food between 2015 and last year. Food wastage at the supermarket stood at 1,278 tonnes last year, down from 1,326 tonnes in 2015. To reduce wastage, the supermarket chain sold imperfect fruits and vegetables at a discount, and donated unsold canned food to the needy. (straitstimes.com)

UK risks 22% tariff on EU food imports if no Brexit deal - retailers

British shoppers could face an average tariff of 22% on food from the European Union if Prime Minister Theresa May fails to reach a trade deal with Brussels before Britain leaves in two years time, retailers said on Thursday. Nearly 80% of British food imports come from EU member states and if no trade agreement is struck Britain and the EU would have to treat each other as WTO members. "Such a scenario would put upward pressure on consumer food prices," said the British Retail Consortium, which represents big supermarkets and other stores. (Reuters)

Finland's Kesko closes more stores

Kesko said on Thursday it will close another 42 convenience stores as part of its integration of the Suomen Lahikauppa retail chain, after failing to find a buyer. The Finnish competition watchdog required Kesko to sell 60 of Lahikauppa's 600 stores as a condition of the retailer's €60m takeover of loss-making Lahikauppa last year. But Kesko said on Thursday that it had only found a buyer for 10 stores and the watchdog had agreed it could close 42 stores and turn another eight outlets into Kesko stores instead. (Reuters)

Russia's X5 Retail Group says Q1 sales up 26.4% y/y

Russia's X5 Retail Group has posted a 26.4% increase in net retail sales for the first quarter of the year. Like-for-like sales were up 7.3%. The group said that performance 'remained strong' despite slowing food price inflation in the country, with like-for-like trade positive across all its major formats. X5 added 630 net new stores in the first quarter of 2017, compared to 377 in the same period last year. (esmmagazine.com)

Could Kroger have an interest in Whole Foods?
Please, click here to read the article.

Publication date: 4/21/2017
Author: Jan Willem de Jongste
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


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