US: Stop & Shop debuts smaller-format store in Massachusetts
The Stop & Shop Supermarket Co. LLC’s new small-format store which opened December 14 in Newton, Massachusetts, is the first in the chain’s home state to feature its new logo and updated design, which debuted earlier this year at 21 Hartford, Connecticut-area stores. The 20,950-square-foot store creates about 100 new jobs for area residents, according to the chain. “We are excited to share our new store with the Newton community, and proud to show the local community our new offerings that are centered around making grocery shopping more convenient for our customers”, noted Stop & Shop SVP of Operations Stacy Wiggins. “We know our customers’ needs are evolving, and we’re continuing to improve our shopping experience accordingly.”
Canada: Sales and profits grow in Sobeys' Q2 as Project Sunrise gains momentum
Sobeys delivered its strongest quarter since the launch of Project Sunrise last year. Total sales increased 3.1% to $6.2bln, with same-store sales (ex-fuel) up 2.5%. Adjusted net earnings were up 49.4% to $110.4mln. This has provided the business with the momentum to push ahead with its strategic initiatives, developed to enable the business to better compete in the Canadian, market. Commenting on the results, Michael Medline, president and CEO, Empire Company Limited, stated: ”We have a ways to go, but we are setting ourselves up for long-term success through strategic moves such as Project Sunrise, FreshCo 2.0, our Ocado-driven ecommerce platform and the recent acquisition of Farm Boy.”
Mexico: El Corte Inglés extends deal with Soriana
El Corte Inglés will extend its agreement with Mexico-based Soriana, which will see its private label brands stocked in Soriana’s stores in Mexico. Soriana stocks 120 SKUs from El Corte Inglés, including olives, cookies, juices, infusions, amongst others. The extension of the partnership is expected to lead Soriana to stock more private label products from El Corte Inglés.
Carrefour launches its webstore in Jordan
Majid Al Futtaim, a leading shopping mall, communities, retail and leisure pioneer across the Middle East, Africa and Asia recently announced the launch of Carrefour’s new online store in Jordan. The store will serve all the Jordanian provinces except for Aqaba. The webstore can be accessed at Carrefourjordan.com.
Holland: AH To Go partners with Thuisbezorgd.nl for delivery service in Amsterdam
Dutch retailer Albert Heijn has partnered with food-delivery service Thuisbezorgd.nl to offer home delivery of its 'AH To Go' food assortment from selected stores. Customers can now avail the free-of-charge service from two Albert Heijn on-the-go food stores in Amsterdam. These include the outlets in Ferdinand Bolstraat and Waterlooplein. Commenting on the partnership, the general manager of AH To Go, Jan-Willem Dockheer said, "The online ordering of a lunch or meal is becoming more and more common. "Together with Thuisbezorgd.nl, we can make even more customers happy with our delicious, fresh products."
German union calls strike at Amazon warehouses
German trade union Verdi called on workers at two Amazon logistic centers to strike on Monday, part of a long-running campaign for better pay and conditions. Verdi has organized frequent strikes at Amazon in Germany since 2013 to press demands for the retailer to raise pay for warehouse workers in accordance with collective bargaining agreements in Germany’s mail order and retail industry. Amazon has repeatedly rejected Verdi’s demands, saying it believes warehouse staff should be paid in line with competitors in the logistics sector, not as retail staff. Germany is Amazon’s second-biggest market after the United States.
Ukraine: Auchan introduces home delivery
In Ukraine, Auchan has introduced a home delivery service for online orders. The deliveries will be carried out by New Mail. Home delivery will only be available in Kiev initially, but the retailer hopes to extend the service to other regions soon.
Spain: Alibaba’s AliExpress renews partnership with Correos
Alibaba’s ecommerce platform AliExpress has extended its partnership with local postal service company Correos. The partnership, which began in 2015, aims to help small to medium-sized Spanish companies increase their sales globally and to improve the efficiency of their logistics. Delivery times is one issue that led AliExpress to improve its cross-border logistics alongside Correos. This will help speed up the delivery process for products arriving from outside Spain. AliExpress is also helping Spanish companies improve their own ecommerce capabilities, by helping them to better understand customers and improve brand loyalty. AliExpress’s general manager, Wang Mingqiang, said: “We see that Spanish companies are very strong in categories such as fashion, design and consumer electronics [and] we hope to help Spanish SMEs to export to the rest of the EU and to the world”.
Lidl adds BLIK mobile payment solution in Poland
Lidl shoppers in Poland can now use the BLIK app to pay for their shopping. Mobile payment is a common feature amongst Poland’s top retailers. Auchan, Biedronka and Zabka have previously enabled the BLIK app to be used in their stores, with others using competing platforms, such as Apple Pay and Google Pay. The app gives a shopper a code to enter into the card payment terminal at the check-out, once products have been scanned. BLIK’s solution is unlike the Apple and Google platforms, which use Near Field Communication (NFC) technology. For those platforms, shoppers complete their payment by tapping their phone on the terminal.
Sweden: Axfood drives online efficiencies
Axfood Snabbgross has partnered with label solutions company StrongPoint to improve its picking process. StrongPoint will provide Axfood Snabbgross with technology that enables shelf labels to flash when being picked for an online order. The technology has helped reduce picking time by six seconds to nine seconds per item, driving efficiencies of up to 30%. The first Axfood Snabbgross store to trial the technology is Årsta, located outside Stockholm. The pilot project will be evaluated in May 2019 with the intention of being rolled out if successful.