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Tuskys is seeking a strategic investor before the end of this month

UK's 'Big Four' supermarkets all maintained double-digit sales growth

Kenya's No.2 retailer seeks strategic investor as supplier debts mount
Kenyan supermarket chain Tuskys is seeking a strategic investor before the end of this month as one way to raise funds, the competition watchdog said after it told the retailer to clear more than $25mln in supplier bills. The retail sector has seen 2 major supermarket chains collapse in recent years, while Carrefour franchisee Majid al Futtaim has entered the market and grown into Kenya’s third biggest retailer in just 4 years. Tuskys, with 53 stores making it Kenya’s second biggest retailer behind Naivas, was ordered by the Competition Authority of Kenya (CAK) to clear supplier bills worth 2.77bln shillings ($26mln) last month, under new rules to cushion suppliers from delays.

Britain's grocery sales growth slows as lockdown eased
Grocery sales in Britain rose 10% year-on-year in the 4 weeks to July 11, slowing from previous weeks as COVID-19 restrictions were eased to allow hospitality and leisure outlets to reopen in England, industry data showed. Market researcher Nielsen said the growth was down from 14% in last month’s report. Nielsen said online grocery purchases leapt 115% year-on-year, accounting for a record 14% of all grocery spending in the UK. Morrisons was the best performer of Britain’s so-called “big four” supermarket groups in the 12 weeks to July 11, with sales growth of 15.7%, followed by market leader Tesco with growth of 12% and No. 2 Sainsbury’s with growth of 10.2%. Walmart owned Asda was again the laggard with growth of 8.7%. The big four’s growth was dwarfed by Iceland, whose sales surged 30.4% as shoppers bought more frozen food. German-owned discounters Aldi and Lidl saw a marginal loss of market share, partly reflecting their lack of a major online offer.

Serbia: Delhaize rebrands Belgrade hypermarket
Delhaize Serbia has announced that it is to rebrand the Tempo Ada hypermarket in Belgrade as Mega Maxi on 30 July. The rebranded store promises a new shopping experience for customers, with an assortment of quality products at affordable prices. The Dutch-Belgian-owned retailer operates 12 hypermarkets under the Tempo banner located outside major cities.

UK's 'Big Four' supermarkets all maintain double-digit growth: Kantar
The UK's 'Big Four' supermarkets all maintained double-digit sales growth in the 12 weeks to 12 July, compared to the same period last year, according to the latest market share data from Kantar. Market leader Tesco (26.7% market share) posted 15.1% growth in the period, with second-placed Sainsbury's (14.9% share) seeing 13.5% growth and Asda (14.1% share) seeing 11.0% growth. Morrisons put in the best sales performance of the UK's main retailers, seeing 17.4% growth to sit on 10.3% market share.

US: Kroger reaches tentative agreement with UFCW Local Unions
The Kroger Co. announced a tentative agreement with 20 local unions of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) to withdraw from the UFCW International Union-Industry Pension Fund ("National Fund"), a multi-employer pension plan. This would allow 33,000 Kroger family of companies' associates across 14 divisions to participate in a new variable annuity pension plan that improves security for future retirement benefits. This tentative agreement has been approved by Kroger and the National Fund board of trustees. The 20 UFCW local unions representing Kroger family of companies' associates have agreed to present this tentative agreement to their members for ratification.

US: Walmart has announced plans to build a $220mln distribution center
Walmart has announced plans to build a $220mln distribution center in Dorchester County, near Ridgeville, South Carolina. The announcement was the culmination of an effort, supported by state, county and local officials, to strengthen Walmart’s supply chain network while creating more than 1,000 local full-time jobs.

US: Lidl sets more Long Island openings
Lidl U.S. has announced opening dates for 2 former Best Market stores on Long Island, and said an additional 3 Best Market stores would close shortly to begin remodeling, with planned reopenings by early next year. The Arlington, Virginia-based hard discounter - a division of Germany’s Schwarz Group - acquired 27 Best Market stores in late 2018 and has been gradually converting and/or relocating them to establish the Lidl brand in metro New York. Lidl has 4 Long Island sites already open, with 2 more opening dates announced late last week: East Meadow, opening July 29, and Patchougue, opening August 5.

US: Dollar Tree making big executive moves
Dollar Tree Inc. has revealed that Michael A. Witynski, enterprise president of Dollar Tree, has been promoted to president and CEO, while Gary Philbin, who joined Dollar Tree in 2001 and became CEO in 2017, will retire after a retail career of 40-plus years. To ensure a smooth transition, Philbin will remain with the Chesapeake, Virginia-based company as an executive and member of the board of directors through Sept. 23.

US: Stop & Shop reaches tentative withdrawal agreement with local unions on UFCW International Union - Industry Pension Fund
Ahold Delhaize announced that its U.S. brand Stop & Shop reached a tentative agreement to terminate its participation in the United Food & Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) - Industry Pension Fund (the “National Plan”), through a transaction that the National Plan’s trustees determined to be in the best interests of the National Plan’s participants and beneficiaries. While the plan is not in critical status, the tentative agreement does importantly improve the security of pension benefits for associates as well as reduces financial risk for the company.

Adevinta acquires eBay’s Classifieds business unit in $9.2bln deal
eBay announced it had reached a deal to sell off its Classifieds business unit to Adevinta, a Norway-based classified ads publisher majority owned by Norwegian publisher Schibsted. The deal is valued at $9.2bln, which includes eBay getting $2.5bln in cash and 540mln Adevinta shares. The deal makes eBay a 44% owner of Adevinta, with a 33.3% voting stake. Adevinta’s interest in eBay was reported earlier in the week, but with the deal coming at a much lower valuation, of $8bln.

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