US: Hy-Vee bets on real estate turnarounds in the Twin Cities
Hy-Vee has set its Minnesota expansion sights on underappreciated real estate vacated by other retailers, according to the Pioneer Press. The Iowa-based chain has opened 3 such stores in the eastern suburbs of the Twin Cities, revitalizing shopping areas that had fallen out of favor and plagued city officials. In Cottage Grove, for instance, the Gateway North plaza lost Kmart, Home Depot, Rainbow Foods and numerous smaller stores in a little over a decade. Since Hy-Vee opened a supermarket there last year, a HomeGoods and T.J. Maxx joined the fray, soon to be followed by a Planet Fitness, the Pioneer Press reported. In West St. Paul, Hy-Vee plans to buy an old YMCA building, while in Spring Lake Park, a planned store has already attracted a senior housing complex. After slowing its store growth last year, Hy-Vee has resumed expansion in the Twin Cities and will have 12 stores in the market by the end of next year, according to local reports. All told, the retailer has spent around $400mln on current and future store locations.
US: Target installs conveyor belt advertising at 1,000th store
Target Corp. has completed the installation of its 1,000th store with conveyor belt advertising, promoting their major e-commerce and shopper loyalty initiatives. The advertisements on the conveyor belts at checkout, supplied by MessageWrap, have proven to be an ideal new marketing medium to promote shopper loyalty and bridge the in-store experience with mobile and online shopping.
UK: Spar expands social media coverage
Spar UK is set to increase its social media presence through new partnership with social media agency, We Are Social. We Are Social will manage Spar’s social brand strategy and content development in the UK, and will work with the in-house digital team on producing content and measuring its effectiveness. The social media agency is tasked with helping Spar increase its community and drive a new audience online. Michael Lawless, brand and marketing director, Spar UK commented: “The Spar brand is a well-established household name. We’ve undertaken a number of audience studies into where our existing and future consumer-base lies, and now want to ensure this is reflected in our online presence. This is particularly true for social media - it’s an increasingly important communications channel for us. We Are Social was highly recommended both creatively and strategically and has a proven track record for delivering real business results”.
Italy's Conad: 3% growth in turnover to €13.4bln
Italy-based cooperative Conad has released its forecast for its 2018 financial performance. Conad said it expected its turnover to increase by 3% to €13.4bln. CEO Francesco Pugliese said the performance was better than expected, considering the “worrying decline in consumption” in the country. Conad said its performance had enabled it to strengthen its share in the supermarket channel to 22.4% from 21.5% in 2017. It also experienced an increase in market share to 12.9% from 12.5% at a market level. At the end of 2018 Conad said it is the market leader in the Abruzzo, Calabria, Lazio, Molise, Sardinia and Umbria regions. It is second in Campania, Emilia-Romagna, Sicily and third in Marche, Tuscany and Valle d'Aosta. The retailer increased its store network to 3,225 in 2018, from 3,149 in 2017.
E-commerce share in India's FMCG retail sales triples in 2 years: Nielsen
Growing consumer trust and confidence in online buying has helped e-commerce platforms expand their share in India's total FMCG retail sales by as much as three times, according to market researcher Nielsen. This has led to online purchase of a broader range of categories, with a particularly interesting upswing seen in fresh and packaged groceries, Nielsen said in a report.
Finland: K-Market Kalevantori in Kevara eliminates plastic bags
Finland’s K-Market Kalevantori, located in the town of Kevara, has announced that it has replaced all plastic bags with reusable, paper, and biodegradable bags. The move is a part of the ‘plastic bag free Kerava’ initiative, which aims to make the town the first in Finland to become plastic bags free.
UK: Southern Co-op launches sustainable strategy
Regional co-operative retailer Southern Co-op has announced its five-year plan for a sustainable business. Southern Co-op’s Our Plan 2019-2023 sets out its strategic direction and objectives for a sustainable business. The strategy outlines mid to long-term objectives over the next five years. Southern Co-op, which trades across 11 counties, sets out its purpose, vision and values through Our Plan. The strategy highlights the regional co-operative’s commitment to supporting a responsible way of doing business and creating a fairer society and sustainable future. The strategy also outlines the retailer’s support of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which cover action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure universal peace and prosperity. Southern Co-op has committed to align its plan to support the delivery of these goals by 2030.
Croatian consortium eyeing possible Agrokor takeover
A local consortium in Croatia is reportedly eyeing up a bid to take over food and retail conglomerate Agrokor. According to a report in Slovenian daily Dnevnik, potential consortium members include Adris Grupa, Atlantic Grupa, Kraš, Podravka, and a number of Croatian pension funds. The same source claims that the transfer of ownership and assets of Agrokor's solvent companies such as Leda, Jamnice, Zvijezde, Konzuma and others and Agrokor's property and real estate is currently underway to Dutch company Aisle HoldCo. Most of these assets are in the hands of two Russian banks and mostly US financial institutions and funds, while Croatian banks have a 12% share. If the ambitious plans for the establishment of the Croatian consortium are realised, this would mean that Croatia continues to see a strategic interest in Agrokor.
Tunisia: Supermarket chain Magasin Général acquires local ecommerce startup Founa: report
Tunisian retail giant Magasin General which runs a chain of supermarkets all across the country has acquired ecommerce platform Founa, Tunisian publication ilboursa has reported. The retail company has acquired 80% stake in the startup according to ilboursa’s report. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed. Founded in 2013 by Tunisian entrepreneur Karim Skik, Founa is an online supermarket that sells over 11,000 products in 11 categories including groceries, homeware, baby products, beauty and cosmetics, and books and stationery. Customers have the option to buy anything from these categories from the comfort of their home and it gets delivered to their doorstep on the same day. According to their website, Founa currently delivers in Ariana, Ben Arous, Manouba, Monastir, Nabeul, Sousse, and Tunis. The website supports both cash on delivery and credit card as payment options.
France: Groupe Casino announces partnership with Qarnot Computing
Groupe Casino has announced a strategic partnership with Qarnot computing, a provider of cloud-distributed heating solutions. The move will see new-generation data centres placed in Groupe Casino's warehouses and storerooms, with the heat generated from the servers used to heat the retailer's warehouses and stores, saving energy costs. Groupe Casino said that the venture will generate additional revenue for Groupe Casino through the rental of available space and the supply of power required to run the data centres, via its GreenYellow subsidiary. The data centres will be operated by ScaleMax, a company jointly owned by the Casino Group and Qarnot computing. The first data centre is set to open at a Cdiscount logistics warehouse in the greater Paris region, in the first quarter of 2019, with a further 20 additional sites expected to be fitted out by 2023.