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Dollar Tree: Lower sales

Kroger shuts down Fresh Easts MKT concept stores

US: Sysco contacted German retailer Metro about potential takeover - source
U.S. food distributor Sysco recently contacted Metro about potential takeover of the German wholesaler, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters. Metro and Sysco declined to comment, as did Metro shareholder EP Global Commerce, the investment vehicle of investors Daniel Kretinsky and Patrik Tkac.

US: Dollar Tree grapples with lower sales, Family Dollar costs
Dollar Tree Inc. reported weaker-than-expected sales for its latest quarter and recorded another impairment charge tied to its Family Dollar business, which has struggled. The discount retail chain reported fourth-quarter revenue rose 1.8% to $6.32bln, less than the $6.39bln consensus estimate compiled by FactSet. Profit rose to $123mln, or 52 cents a share, from a loss of $2.31bln, or $9.69 a share, the year earlier, when the company booked a $2.73bln charge against the value of the Family Dollar unit.

US: Kroger shuts down c-store concept
The Kroger Co. sold its convenience-store network to EG Group Ltd. in 2018 and largely exited the convenience-store channel. With the closure on March 4 of its two Fresh Easts MKT concept stores in Columbus, Ohio, the supermarket retailer has taken another step away from c-stores. “As part of a portfolio review, we have made the decision to discontinue the Fresh Eats MKT concept”, a Kroger spokesperson said in a statement provided to CSP Daily News. “From the pilot, we have learned many things about how to provide quality, fresh and new foods to our customers. We will incorporate these learnings in other parts of our business”.

Retail sales in Romania rise at fastest pace in 2 years
The retail sales volume index in Romania increased by 11.1% year-on-year in January (+9.3% in December), the highest annual increase in nearly 2 years, according to data from the statistics office INS. The rise was rather equally shared between food or non-food goods (with the growth rates standing at 10.6% and 11.2%) while the sales of car fuels, typically more volatile, increased by 11.9% compared to the same month of 2019. The retail sales index advanced by 7.2% in 2019 compared to 2018, gaining momentum after the more modest 5.6% annual advance in 2018.

Russia: X5 added more than 1,200 suppliers to its network in 2019
X5 Retail Group has announced that it added around 1,245 new partners to its network of suppliers in Russia in 2019. The retail giant aims to build long-term and mutually beneficial relationships with local producers through these partnerships. The move will help the company to expand its assortment of locally sourced goods in every region, and allow local producers to expand their businesses and access bigger markets.

China: Retailers striving to meet exploding demand for fresh food delivery
Sam's Club, the high-end membership stores of Walmart China, has experienced booming business in recent weeks supplying vegetables and other groceries to meet rising demand from local residents. At this time, the supply of vegetables online is five times higher than the previous level on average, as orders from consumers who have to cook at home due to the coronavirus outbreak continued to rise.

Lidl and other Czech supermarkets to eliminate single-use plastic bags for fruits and veggies
Several supermarket chains in the Czech Republic are moving away from single-use plastic and offering reusable bags for fruits and vegetables. Supermarket chain Lidl is removing single-use plastic bags for fruits and vegetables, and offering reusable bags as an alternative. Last year over a quarter of a billion thin single-use plastic bags were consumed in Lidl stores, according to a company press release. A package of two reusable polyester bags costs 19.90 CZK.

Middle East's first grocery bus launched in Dubai
Those living in faraway communities can now buy their essentials from the region’s first grocery bus. Launched by Carrefour, operated by Majid Al Futtaim in the UAE, Mobimart, aims to bring convenient and accessible shopping to the doorsteps of underserved neighbourhoods and communities across Dubai, six days a week. Carrefour Mobimart offers customers an extensive variety of daily groceries and fresh food, including a selection of organic produce, frozen food, snacks, beverages, and light household items.

Aeon Vietnam plans US$2bln expansion
Japanese retail giant Aeon Vietnam says it will invest US$2bln expanding its presence across the country. Aeon Vietnam opened its fifth shopping centre in the country last November, its second in the capital city Hanoi. Now, the general director of Aeonmall Vietnam, Iwamura Yasutsugu, says the company is eyeing 25 centres across the country. Aeon launched in Vietnam in 2013, opening its first mall, Celadon City, in a remote suburb of Ho Chi MInh City, which was expanded last June. More malls have been built in locations including the industrial city of Binh Duong, near Ho Chi Minh City, and Hanoi’s Long Bien district.

Volume of retail trade up by 0.6% in euro area
In January 2020 compared with December 2019, the seasonally adjusted volume of retail trade increased by 0.6% in the euro area (EA19) and by 0.5% in the EU27, according to estimates from Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. In December 2019, the retail trade volume decreased by 1.1% in the euro area and by 1.0% in the EU27. In January 2020 compared with January 2019, the calendar adjusted retail sales index increased by 1.7% in the euro area and by 2.1% in the EU27.

EBay looking to sell South Korean unit: report
EBay Inc is looking to sell its South Korean unit, which includes Gmarket, one of the largest online marketplaces in the country, in a deal that could fetch nearly $5bln, a Seoul-based newspaper reported. The Korea Economic Daily, citing an unnamed industry official, reported that eBay has decided to sell 100% of its stake in eBay Korea. Possible buyers include other South Korean retail giants such as Lotte Shopping, Shinsegae and Hyundai Department Store Group, as well as private equity funds like MBK, the country’s largest private equity firm, the newspaper reported.

UK: Tesco to price match Aldi products
Britain’s biggest supermarket group Tesco will start price matching Aldi on hundreds of everyday items, firing the latest salvo in its fight to stem the market share gains of its rival. Tesco said its price matching with Aldi, a German-owned discounter, would include products such as its packs of 5% fat lean beef steak mince, Greek-style yoghurt and ready-to-eat large avocados as well as branded products. The initiative will also be available online, it said.

Dutch supermarket Albert Heijn experiments with digital signage
Albert Heijn is the biggest supermarket chain in the Netherlands (with close to a thousand locations), and as such, the company wants to be an innovator in the Dutch market. The campaign is called the “Echt Vers” concept, which literally translates into “Real Fresh” concept. The concept is to communicate the freshness to its visiting clients by using screens instead of printing materials to illustrate the origins of the fruits, vegetables etc.

Russian food retailer VkusVill plans stores in Netherlands, France
VkusVill, a fast growing Russian supermarket chain with revenues of more than $1.3bln in 2019, plans to open a store in the Netherlands within weeks and later in France as it considers a future initial public offering (IPO) in New York. Founder Andrey Krivenko said that VkusVill, which on average opens two new stores in Russia every working day, hopes to open its doors in the Netherlands, most likely in Amsterdam, this spring, selling food from local producers as it does in Russia.

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