UK: Which? names Waitrose supermarket of the year
Waitrose has been awarded the “supermarket of the year” title by consumer group Which?, beating competition from shortlisted rivals Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Iceland. The upmarket grocer was recognised for its handling of trade during the Covid-19 pandemic, especially during the panic-buying frenzy that took place in March. Which? said Waitrose provided customers with a “range of ways to shop” and said it handled the surge in demand during the pandemic really well, especially during lockdown.
Sainsbury’s enters UAE through exclusive partnership with Kibsons
Kibsons, a Dubai-based importer and distributor of vegetables, dairy products and meat, has partnered with British supermarket chain Sainsbury’s in order to retail the latter’s products within the UAE starting October 15. It is the first time that Sainsbury’s products will be available to purchase in the UAE. There will be over 500 products from Sainsbury’s available to purchase via Kibsons. These include frozen seafood, pizza, bread, pastry and fruits, biscuits and savoury snacks.
UK: Shopper confidence weakens amid mounting virus and Brexit concerns
September saw a slight drop in shopper confidence as tighter coronavirus restrictions and uncertainty over the UK’s exit from the EU led the news agenda. This is according to the latest IGD Shopper Confidence Index. It showed that overall confidence slipped to -8 on average for the whole month, down from -7 in August. While the month started at -6, confidence fell to -10 by the end of September.
Carrefour China launches its first community store
Seizing the current “small and beautiful” retail trend in the country, Carrefour launched its first fresh food community store in Shanghai on 30 September. Situated at No. 1157, Zhonghua New Road, Shanghai, the store occupies an area of approximately 430 square meters. The store carries around 3,000 SKUs, with a focus on fresh products. The range offers a rich variety, including fruits and vegetables.
UK: Tesco to recruit 11,000 temporary colleagues for the festive season
Tesco will be recruiting more than 11,000 temporary colleagues to help in stores across the UK at the busiest time of the year. Each year Tesco recruits temporary colleagues to help customers during the busy Christmas period. These UK-wide roles, in Tesco’s Superstores and Extra stores, will include picking for online deliveries and store replenishment, supporting existing store colleagues.
Australia: Coles stores reopen after nationwide technical failure shuts down registers
Coles stores have reopened after the company fixed an IT glitch that had shut down registers and forced customers to abandon their shopping trolleys. A Coles spokesperson said all stores had reopened nationally after "a technical issue with our point of sale system".
France: Tesco, Carrefour agree changes to alliance
The purchasing alliance between Tesco and Carrefour has come under scrutiny by the French Competition Authority as part of an investigation concerning their potential negative impact of buying alliances on French private label suppliers. The authority noted that the contractual conditions of the Tesco-Carrefour agreement were unfavourable to suppliers (absence of exclusivity, short-term contracts, absence of volume commitments from distributors), which limited their power in the market. In response to the competition authority’s concerns, the partners have now offered certain commitments, among other: To exclude several categories of fruit and vegetables from the scope of the agreement that are directly bought from French and European producers.
Discount stores account for 20% of modern retail in Romania
Discount retail chains Lidl, Penny and Supeco now account for one fifth of the modern retail sales, after their sales went up twice faster than the market on average last year. The 3 retailers posted 14.1bln lei sales last year, 22% higher than in 2018. “The pandemic has shown customers want their stores nearby, easy to reach, have parking space and they seek to spend as little time shopping as possible,” Frank Wagner, the executive who runs Lidl operations in Romania, said.
UK: Poundland acquires Fultons Foods
Poundland is accelerating its move into the grocery market with the acquisition of Fultons Foods, the frozen food retailer that operates over 100 stores in the north of England. The value retailer had already been working with Fultons for the last year on developing and rolling out a new chilled and frozen food range into Poundland stores. The extensive offer is already available in 70 of its outlets with the acquisition expected to enable Poundland to extend it to another 40-plus stores by December.
Brazilian retailer Grupo Mateus raises $821mln in IPO
Grupo Mateus SA, a Brazilian operator of supermarkets and discount warehouse-style stores, said it had raised 4.6bln reais ($821mln) in an initial public offering. The company priced shares at 8.97 reais ($1.60) each, the very bottom of its price range, which was set between 8.97 reais and 11.66 reais.
US: Grocery strike averted!
Teamster unions representing more than 4,000 warehouse workers and truck drivers who deliver food and supplies to So. California's largest grocery stores, Albertsons (includes Vons and Pavilions) and Kroger (includes Ralphs and Food4Less), reached a Tentative Agreement that avoids a strike by protecting Teamster families' - and retirees' - affordable health care.
US: Village Super Market closes out fiscal 2020 on up note
Village Super Market Inc., a ShopRite operator and member of the Wakefern Food Corp. cooperative, saw sales climb nearly 20% in the fiscal 2020 fourth quarter, finishing the year with sales growth of almost 10%. For the quarter ended July 25, sales totaled $501.5mln, up 19.9% from $418.4bln a year earlier, Springfield, New Jersey-based Village Super Market said. The retailer attributed the gain to a 7.5% uptick in same-store sales plus the addition of five Fairway Market stores in May, the opening of a replacement ShopRite store in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, in November, and the acquisition of New York City specialty market Gourmet Garage last June.
US: Shipt aims to add 100,000 personal shoppers
Gearing up for the holiday season crunch, on-demand delivery service Shipt plans to hire another 100,000 personal shoppers, increasing its delivery personnel base to more than 300,000. The Target Corp. subsidiary said it’s targeting Detroit and Grand Rapids, Michigan; Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Houston and Chicago among the markets for personal shopper hires.
Amazon to take a stake in SpartanNash
In connection with an ongoing business arrangement with Amazon, food wholesaler SpartanNash has issued warrants to an affiliate of the e-commerce giant to purchase up to 5.4mln shares of the company over the next 7 years. The agreement gives Amazon the potential to acquire nearly 14% of the Grand Rapids, Michigan-based company’s outstanding shares for about $96mln over time at a price of $17.7257 per share upon vesting.
US: Hannaford’s new digital tools teach healthy eating to kids
Hannaford Supermarkets is rolling out a new mobile app that helps parents teach their children how to eat more nutritiously, according to a published report. Launched on National Child Health Day, which is traditionally observed on the first Monday in October, the Hannaford Snack Pals app and website aim to introduce healthy eating habits and wellness to kids through fun interactive games, activities, recipes and more, while the app offers a scavenger hunt.