Amazon is delivering nearly two-thirds of its own packages as e-commerce continues pandemic boom
The pandemic-fueled e-commerce boom doesn’t appear to be slowing down in the second half of the year as July package volumes exceeded the average monthly volume in the first three months of the outbreak. According to data from ShipMatrix, Amazon shipped 415mln packages in July compared with a monthly average of 389mln between April and June. The e-commerce giant also delivered 66% of its own packages in July, compared with 61% between April and June.
US: Kroger outlines new stakeholder priorities and operational improvements in 2020 Environmental, Social and Governance Report
The Kroger Co. released its 2020 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report, highlighting progress toward its sustainability goals and confirming the company's commitment to creating communities free of hunger and waste. Kroger's 2020 report leads with an updated materiality assessment, outlining the ESG topics most meaningful to the company's key stakeholders. The in-depth assessment, conducted in partnership with an external consultancy in early 2020, resulted in an updated list of priority topics.
China: Alibaba's Freshippo says will test all Shenzhen employees for COVID-19
Alibaba-owned supermarket chain Freshippo said it has shut 21 of its Shenzhen stores and was requiring all its employees in the city to undergo tests for the novel coronavirus after three cases were found at one of its outlets there. Freshippo said two brand promoters and one staff member who worked at its store in the IBC mall in Shenzhen’s Luohu district had tested positive for the virus, citing findings made by the city’s health authority. “All Freshippo employees in Shenzhen, as well as fresh food products at the stores, will undergo nucleic acid testing. All test results will be formally announced by the government”, the company said in a statement.
India: Ninjacart’s 10,000 steps of efficiency from farm to doorstep
Last month, Flipkart rolled out a hyperlocal grocery delivery service to compete with Amazon Fresh, BigBasket and Grofers. Even Swiggy and Dunzo, which were mainly taking food orders before the pandemic, have pivoted to last-mile grocery deliveries. What used to be a convenience has become an essential service. Flipkart Quick, the answer to Amazon Fresh, is enabled by India’s top-funded agritech startup Ninjacart, founded in 2015 to supply fresh produce from farms to retailers, restaurants, food brands and service providers. Flipkart’s owner Walmart committed $50mln to Ninjacart in August last year, following a $90mln series C round led by Tiger Global in April and a $35mln series B round in December 2018.
China: JD.com announces 2020 second quarter and interim financial results
JD.com, Inc., China’s leading technology driven e-commerce company transforming to become the leading supply chain-based technology and service provider, announced its unaudited financial results for the 3 months and 6 months ended June 30, 2020. Second quarter 2020 highlights: Net revenues for the second quarter of 2020 were RMB201.1bln (US$ 28.5bln), an increase of 33.8% from the second quarter of 2019. Net revenues from the sales of general merchandise products for the second quarter of 2020 were RMB64.0bln (US$9.1bln), an increase of 45.4% from the second quarter of 2019. Net service revenues for the second quarter of 2020 were RMB22.9bln (US$3.2bln), an increase of 36.4% from the second quarter of 2019. Income from operations for the second quarter of 2020 was RMB5.0bln (US$0.7bln), compared to RMB2.3bln for the same period last year.
Philippines: MerryMart to open first drive-thru store as it charts expansion
Philippines grocery chain MerryMart will launch its inaugural drive-thru outlet in Iloilo City in January. MerryMart’s new drive-thru is in part a response to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The firm is planning to deploy this concept in multiple locations at various major thoroughfares. The firm’s owner, Edgar “Injap” Sia II, launched an IPO for several months ago on the strength of his achievements in the fast-food franchising sector via the Mang Inasal restaurant chain, which was eventually purchased by Jollibee a decade ago. MerryMart’s concept takes its cues from Sia’s innovations in the former business.
UK: Tesco adds free delivery for Clubcard members to take on Amazon
Tesco is reportedly adding free delivery to its Clubcard Plus loyalty scheme as the competition against online giant Amazon heats up. Jeff Bezos’ Amazon said last month that customers can buy cheese, baked goods, fresh meat, fruit and vegetables with no delivery fee if they subscribe to its £7.99 a month Prime service. Tesco chief executive Dave Lewis said now that Amazon has announced a similar service to its 15mln UK members, Tesco will have to “think about how it puts delivery into Clubcard Plus”, The Sunday Telegraph reported.
UK: Marks & Spencer says it will cut 7,000 jobs over 3 months
Marks & Spencer is to cut about 7,000 jobs over the next 3 months in the latest round of redundancies at the retailer as it cuts costs and changes the business in the wake of the pandemic. The job cuts will be in its central support centre, regional management and its UK stores, adding to the swathe of job cuts announced by UK companies during the coronavirus crisis. M&S said it expects a “significant proportion” of the job losses will be made through voluntary redundancies or early retirement and has begun consultations with staff.
Ocado sees sales up by nearly a half, as UK moves on from lockdown
Online retailer Ocado saw the biggest growth of any UK retailer in the 12 weeks to 11 August, seeing its sales grow by 45.5%, the latest Kantar data has shown. The sales boost has lifted Ocado's market share to 1.8%, the data showed. Market leader Tesco (26.6% market share) saw its sales rise 12.8%, while Sainsbury's (14.9% share) and Asda (14.3% share) saw sales up 10.9% and 9.5% respectively. The discounters both saw sales rise by double digits - Aldi (7.9% market share) was up 12.7% and Lidl (5.9% share) saw sales rise 15.7%. Other retailers to put in a solid performance included Morrisons (10.2% market share), which was the best performing of the 'Big Four' operators, seeing its sales grow by 16.0%, the Co-op (7.1% market share), which continued its strong form with a sales jump of 22.4%, and frozen foods retailer Iceland (2.4% share), which saw sales rise 29.2%.
JD outlines aggressive expansion strategy for mainland China
Chinese e-commerce giant JD is planning on a widespread store network expansion within 5 years. The firm will open 20 E-Space experience stores in first-tier cities, 300 home-appliance flagship stores in prefectural-level cities and 5000 stores in towns and villages by 2025, according to the firm’s senior VP Yan Xiaobing. Yan made the announcement at a press conference marking the completion of JD’s full acquisition of home-appliance chain 5Star, commenting that the complete store network “will create a new offline JD”. The E-Space stores, known for allowing consumers to try anything in store, will be 50,000–100,000sqm in size, while the home-appliance stores will be 10,000–20,000sqm each.