Britain's Asda ends Walmart era on the up
British supermarket group Asda ended its 22 years under Walmart ownership with accelerating underlying sales in the Christmas quarter, driven by strong demand for premium ranges. Asda, now owned by the Issa brothers and private equity group TDR Capital, reported a 5.1% rise in same-store sales over the 3 months to December 31 - an improvement on third-quarter growth of 2.7%.
China: Grocery app Dingdong Maicai considering US IPO
Chinese grocery app Dingdong Maicai is considering an initial public offering (IPO) in the U.S. to advance expansion in the fresh food delivery market, Bloomberg reported, citing sources. Backed by Sequoia Capital, Dingdong Maicai is collaborating with advisers on the offering, which could bring in an estimated $300mln, the sources told Bloomberg. Dingdong Maicai, which translates to “Dingdong buy vegetables” in Chinese, operates in China’s competitive fresh food distribution sector, which is anticipated to hit 1.27tln yuan ($197bln) by 2025. Founded in 2017, the platform delivers fresh vegetables, soy products, fruits and meat, and is backed by General Atlantic, Bertelsmann Asia Investments, Qiming Venture Partners and Gaorong Capital.
Russia: Magnit targets improved profitability in 'consumer-centric' strategy
Russian food retailer Magnit is focused on improving profitability between 2021 and 2025, driven by increased sales density and new technologies, the company has said. Russia's retail landscape shifted in 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic kept consumers at home, driving demand for e-commerce and cheaper goods. Magnit said it would create an e-grocery platform, capable of supporting 5% of company turnover, to better compete with rival X5, which overtook Magnit in revenue a few years ago.
South Korean retail giant Shinsegae invests in Singapore’s Grab
Signite Partners, the venture capital arm of South Korean retailer Shinsegae Group, has invested an undisclosed amount in the Singaporean super app Grab, The Korea Herald reported. “We will continue to discover and invest in promising startups at home and abroad as well as creating various opportunities to generate synergy with startups”, one official at Signite Partners told the news outlet.
Denmark: Supermarket to help small, shuttered businesses survive lockdown
Danish supermarket cooperative Kvickly has pledged to set aside some of its extra proceeds made while smaller retailers were shut down by coronavirus restrictions and use it for marketing to help them reopen successfully. Kvickly said it would donate its proceeds from sales of non-food items to shuttered shops for use in marketing campaigns as they reopen for business. That would amount to at least 7-10mln Danish crowns ($1.14-$1.63mln) - but more if the current coronavirus lockdown is extended beyond March 1.
Ukraine: AMCU permits Silpo to buy Furshet retail chain
The Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine (AMCU) has allowed Silpo-Food LLC, a member of Fozzy Group (Kyiv), to buy Furshet retail chain, Silpo announces a preliminary agreement on the transfer of some supermarkets. "Silpo-Food reached a preliminary agreement with Furshet retail chain on the possibility of transferring to the management of Silpo-Food part of the supermarkets operating under the Furshet trade mark. The implementation of the project will begin if permission is obtained from the AMCU", the Fozzy Group press service told Interfax-Ukraine.
Indian retailer group calls for ban on Amazon in country after Reuters report
A leading group of Indian retailers urged the government to ban the local operations of Amazon.com Inc, after Reuters reported the U.S. e-commerce giant has for years given preferential treatment to a small group of sellers on its India platform and used them to circumvent the country’s strict foreign investment regulations.
Chinese retail solution platform DMall ponders public filing
Chinese retail solutions startup DMall, backed by grocery chain Wumart Group, is considering a plan to file for an initial public offering (IPO), Bloomberg reported, citing sources. DMall is reportedly coordinating with advisors to launch an IPO in the second half of 2021, the sources told Bloomberg. The Beijing-headquartered startup could end up raising about $500mln if it moves forward with a public filing. Wumart Group is also considering a public offering on the Hong Kong exchange that would be separate from DMall’s listing, the sources told Bloomberg.
Amazon retains title of the world’s most valuable retail brand
Brand Finance has released its latest retail ranking that has been expanded to include 100 brands to give a fuller picture of the diverse sector. Amazon has retained the title of the world’s most valuable retail brand, recording a 15% brand value growth to US$254.2bln. The online giant is one of the few brands that has benefitted considerably from the pandemic and the resulting unprecedented surge in demand as consumers turned online following store closures. Over Q2 and Q3 of 2020, e-commerce platforms experienced the highest revenue growth since 2016.
US: Blue Apron Holdings, Inc. reports fourth quarter and full year 2020 results
Blue Apron Holdings, Inc. announced financial results for the quarter and full year ended December 31, 2020. “Fourth quarter operating results exceeded guidance as we grew net revenue year over year by 22% to $115.5mln. The fourth quarter marks the third consecutive quarter of double-digit year over year increase in net revenue and highlights our continued operating momentum”, said Linda Findley Kozlowski, Blue Apron’s President and Chief Executive Officer.
US: Meijer on track to complete rollout of Flashfood program to all stores across its footprint
After COVID-19 caused delays in rolling out Flashfood to all its stores across the Midwest in 2020, Meijer is on track to complete implementation of the food waste reduction program this year. While also cutting down on in-store food waste, the initiative allows customers to purchase food nearing its sell-by date - like meat, produce, seafood, deli and bakery products – at up to 50% off on the Flashfood app, and then pick them up at Meijer stores.
US: Walmart reports record Q4 and FY21 revenue
Walmart reported: "Annual revenue of nearly $560bln resulted in $35bln of growth; $40bln of growth in constant currency. Q4 FY21 GAAP EPS of ($0.74); Adjusted EPS of $1.39. Decision to repay property tax relief in the U.K. lowered GAAP EPS and Adjusted EPS by $0.07; COVID-related costs were $1.1bln in Q4. Walmart continues to build the next generation business model, investing in automation to fuel future sales and earnings growth. FY22 capital investments are expected to be nearly $14bln to build supply chain capacity and automation to stay ahead of demand, improve the customer experience and increase productivity".