Free Wifi service at Spar Nigeria

Strong Q3 results for Seven & i Holdings

France: Casino sustains organic growth in Q4
France-based Casino said it maintained its organic growth performance in the fourth quarter, with sales rising 3.2%, despite the retailer suffering a 0.3% fall in total sales at a group level. The retailer’s organic growth was driven by its online only Cdiscount brand, where organic sales rose 9.1%, and Latin America, where they rose by 5.5%.

Poland: Biedronka launches goBio range
From January 11th, 2018, Jerónimo Martins-owned Biedronka is launching a new offer of organic products, with an EU organic farming logo, under the slogan “Nature can be proud of us”. The goBIO brand is the start of a range which will be expanded over time. The retailer said that customers buying from the range of around 20 products can be assured of strict EU regulations.

Nigeria: Shoppers to enjoy free Wifi service at Spar
Spar Nigeria has taken its service delivery a notch higher with the introduction of Free Internet services in its stores nationwide. The project began at the Ilupeju branch of the Hypermarket and will be implemented across stores nationwide in the coming weeks. Spar’s spokesperson Mr. John Goldsmith explains: ”We are glad to announce the launch of Free Wi Fi service from Spar Ilupeju store. We are sure the Free Wifi service is in line with our shoppers' expectations and it will surely delight our shoppers and add joy to their shopping experience.”

Japan: Seven & i on track for strong fiscal year
Seven & i Holdings has released strong Q3 results, posting a 4.4% increase in operating revenue to JPY 4,479.7bln, with operating income rising 8% to JPY 295.7bln. The retailer's main supermarket banner, Ito Yokado, saw a decline of 1.4% YOY in existing store sales due to a reduction on the number of discounts, but a positive 0.4% gross profit margin.

US: Walmart invention seeks to drive online perishables sales
Walmart has filed a patent application for a system that would allow customers to view individual fresh items remotely before purchasing them. The “Fresh Online Experience,” or FOE, would allow customers to order produce, meat and bakery items online using stock photos, but then have the opportunity to approve the actual items being purchased via image scans (either two- or three-dimensional) sent to them by Walmart store workers. Once an item is approved by the customer, an “edible watermark” could be applied to the item before it was packaged for pickup or delivery to verify that it was the item the shopper had selected.

US: Trader Joe’s to adopt BPA- BPS-free receipt paper
Trader Joe’s has vowed to replace its receipt paper to a version that doesn’t contain the chemical bisphenol A (BPA) or bisphenol S (BPS), compounds that have been linked to a variety of health concerns, following customer questions about whether the grocer uses “toxic chemicals” in its products and packaging. The Monrovia, Calif.-based retailer is now pursuing receipt paper that's free of phenol chemicals, including BPA and BPS. The new paper will roll out to stores nationwide.

US market debut of Lidl is turning into a severe disappointment
The market debut of the Lidl in the United States is turning into a severe disappointment. Last year, the company planned to open 100 stores in the country, but so far there are only 47 working. Klaus Gehrig, who is the head of the Schwarz Group, which belongs to Lidl, expects the opening of 20 new stores in 2018.

Amazon narrows down candidates for 2nd HQ
Amazon has narrowed its list of candidates in its quest to find a suitable spot for its second headquarters, cutting the number of metropolitan areas from 238 to 20. Currently: Atlanta; Austin, Texas; Boston; Chicago; Columbus, Ohio; Dallas; Denver; Indianapolis; Los Angeles; Miami; Montgomery County, Md.; Nashville; Newark, N.J.; New York; northern Virginia; Philadelphia; Pittsburgh; Raleigh, N.C.; Toronto; and Washington, D.C., are contenders in the Seattle-based company’s quest for a second home.

US way behind the UK when it comes to grocery shopping
Grocery shopping in the US is more expensive than in the UK. One of the reasons for this is the relative lack of private-label goods in the US. These products have high profit margins as they cost less to create.

US: Shipt expands delivery pilot with Lidl to Richmond

Shipt, a rapidly growing online grocery marketplace, announced a pilot program expansion with Lidl, one of the world’s largest retailers. This expansion follows successful pilot launches in North and South Carolina in late 2017. Starting January 25th, 2018 Shipt will begin home delivery from Lidl stores to Richmond residents.

US: Wisconsin grocery stores testing new technology
At Woodman’s Markets, grocery shoppers can grab a cart, fill it with food, and have a cashier ring them up — business as usual. But for the more adventurous, the store is also a self-described “testing ground” for technology that rewires the grocery shopping process.

US: Walmart trademarks 'Wam! by Walmart' amid grocery delivery push
Walmart has trademarked the name "Wam! by Walmart," described in its U.S. Patent and Trademark Office filing as "retail and online grocery store services featuring home delivery service." The nation's largest brick-and-mortar retailer has been expanding its pilot grocery delivery service, which allows shoppers to order from, have personal shoppers pick items in store, then drop off those bags of groceries via Uber. Wal-Mart also offers in-store pickup for online grocery orders, and is tooling around with avant-garde concepts such as "in-fridge delivery," which allows delivery drivers to ostensibly place groceries directly inside customers' refrigerators at home, using smart-home technology.

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