US: Walmart ends contract with robotics company, opts for human workers instead, report says
Walmart has cut ties with Bossa Nova Robotics, which made robots that scanned shelves for inventory, according to The Wall Street Journal. The retailer has come up with other simple and cost-effective ways to manage the products on its shelves with its human workers rather than the robots, according to the report. The company is still pushing forward with other tech experimentation and recently picked four stores that will act as e-commerce laboratories.
US: Weis Markets reports third quarter results
Weis Markets, Inc. reported its sales increased 14.4% to $1.0bln during the thirteen-week period ended September 26, 2020, compared to the same period in 2019, while its third quarter comparable store sales increased 14.8%. The Company's third quarter net income increased 118.8% to $31.3mln compared to $14.3mln in 2019, while earnings per share totaled $1.16 compared to $0.53 per share for the same period in 2019. Third quarter ecommerce sales increased 160%.
US: Publix sees 18.3% sales spike in Q3
Publix Super Markets has logged another stellar quarterly performance, reporting an 18.3% increase in sales and a nearly 60% jump in earnings for the 3 months ended September 26. Sales at the Lakeland, Florida-based grocer reached $11.1bln for the third quarter, while comparable-store sales increased by an impressive 16.5%. The company estimates that its sales for the three months increased approximately $1.25bln, or 13.4%, due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
US: Uber launches grocery delivery service in Manhattan with plans to expand to the rest of NYC
A popular ride-sharing company is launching a grocery delivery service in parts of Manhattan. Powered by Cornershop, Uber users in Manhattan can order on-demand grocery delivery when using the Uber or Uber Eats app. Eats Pass members get even more with $0 delivery fee on orders over $30. Uber plans to expand the grocery delivery service citywide in the coming weeks and months.
US Foods reports Q3 revenue decline
US Foods Holding Corp. posted a 10.5% revenue decrease in the third quarter of 2020, with net sales declining to $5.8bln. The foodservice distributor said that its organic Q3 earnings exclude contributions from Smart Stores Holding Corp., which was acquired on April 24, 2020. For the Food Group of Companies, which was acquired on September 13, 2019, organic financial results include contributions for the September 14 through September 26 time period only.
Germany: Metro’s food start-up hub NX-Food is now an independent company
German wholesaler Metro has announced that it has spun off its food start-up hub NX-Food as an independent company. The move aims to enable NX-Food to offer its services to clients outside of Metro and position itself as a leading boutique consultancy for food innovation. Fabio Ziemßen and Veronika Pountcheva will serve as the managing directors of the new independent limited liability company.
Switzerland: Philipp Wyss appointed CEO of the Coop
A change is taking shape within the governing bodies of Coop. From May 2021, Philipp Wyss, Executive Vice-President of Switzerland’s number two retailer and Head of Marketing and Supply, will take over as head of the Basel retailer. He will succeed Joos Sutter, who is appointed to replace Hansueli Loosli as Chairman of the Board of Directors.
Singapore: Sheng Siong profit climbs but management tempers expectations
Listed Singaporean supermarket chain Sheng Siong’s profit soared 54.4% in the third quarter to US$23.27mln, riding a wave of increased sales in the grocery sector. Revenue jumped 28.9% to $239.5mln, while gross profit grew 28.7% to $64.68mln, largely off the back of increased home cooking and stocking of pantries throughout, and beyond, the country’s Circuit Breaker period. However, with stay-at-home orders easing across Sheng Siong’s markets, this elevated demand is likely to begin to stabilize in the following months, said CEO Lim Hock Chee.
UK: Ocado spends $287mln on robotics firms to add capability
British online supermarket and technology group Ocado said it would buy two robotics companies for a total of $287mln and upgraded its full year earnings outlook on the back of strong trading at its retail joint venture with Marks & Spencer. Ocado said it was buying Kindred Systems Inc, an advanced piece-picking robotics company, for about $262mln and Haddington Dynamics Inc, a robotic-arm designer and manufacturer, for about $25mln.
China: Dada Group partners with Pagoda to enhance one-hour fruit delivery
Dada Group (“Dada” or the “Company”), China's leading local on-demand retail and delivery platform, announced that more than 500 Pagoda stores have partnered with Dada Now, the on-demand delivery platform of Dada Group, to provide omni-channel order delivery. The number of Dada-Pagoda partnered stores is expected to reach 2,000 by the end of the year.
UK: Sainsbury’s is trialling ‘rapid’ delivery service on Uber Eats
Sainsbury’s has partnered with UberEats and Deliveroo to offer customers a rapid delivery service to their doorstep in an average time of less than 25 minutes. The partnership launched in the Camden superstore in north London for Uber Eats and in Hammersmith, west London for Deliveroo will be rolled out to nine stores across the UK in coming weeks. Customers ordering from the app will have the groceries delivered within 25 minutes and will be able to chose from more than 1,000 Sainsbury’s own label and branded products including: Taste the Difference ready meals, fresh fruit and vegetables, Free-From products and store cupboard essentials.
France: Carrefour buys Bio C'Bon to accelerate organic food focus
Carrefour, Europe's largest retailer, said it was buying the bankrupt specialist distributor Bio c'Bon for 60mln euros ($69.79mln), as part of plans to revamp its food range and focus more on organic food. The Paris commercial court validated Carrefour’s offer for Bio c’Bon, which had been put under court-ordered restructuring, as it included a commitment to preserve more than 1,000 employees, almost the entire workforce, the Carrefour statement said.
Holland: SPAR acquires majority stake in sandwich chain The Tosti Club
SPAR Netherlands has acquired a majority stake in The Tosti Club, a premium grilled sandwich chain with eleven branches nationwide. The Tosti Club already features as an instore food-to-go offering at SPAR stores in Arnhem and Zwolle. With this acquisition, SPAR is growing its market share in the foodservice industry considerably.