Amazon calls on India not to alter e-commerce investment rules - sources
Amazon asked the Indian government not to change e-commerce foreign investment rules until investigations into its business practices had been concluded, 2 sources familiar with the discussions told Reuters. The commerce ministry met e-commerce players after allegations by retailers, which are a crucial part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s support base, that Amazon and Walmart’s Flipkart create complex structures to bypass federal foreign investment rules and damage small traders. Both companies deny any wrongdoing and say they are helping small businesses in India.
Spain: DIA announces 1bln euro plan to convert debt into equity and issue new shares
Spanish supermarket group DIA said it has agreed to convert debt owed to its main shareholder LetterOne into equity and will additionally offer new shares to existing shareholders for a total 1.028bln euro ($1.21bln). The company plans to convert 769mln euros it owes to LetterOne into shares worth the same amount and will offer its existing minority shareholders up to 269mln euros worth of new shares.
Holland: Albert Heijn to phase out plastic bags for fruit and vegetables
Albert Heijn has announced that it plans to phase out plastic bags for loose fruit and vegetables by the end of this year. The initiative will remove 130mln bags, or 243,000 kilograms of plastic, from its operations per year. Beginning mid-April, the retailer will offer free sustainable and reusable bags for the first two weeks for loose fruit and vegetables.
Portugal: Continente launches 'Powered by Plants' meat-free range
Portuguese supermarket chain Continente has launched 'Powered by Plants', a new range of private label vegetarian products. The product range consist of meat-free burgers, nuggets and meatballs made exclusively from vegetable protein.
South Korea: Shinsegae Department Store’s fruit subscription service proves popular
Shinsegae Department Store’s fruit subscription service is enjoying a surge in popularity as the number of subscribers jumped threefold in 10 months. The service, which began at the retailer‘s Gangnam branch, will be extended to its main store in Myeongdong, the department store said.
Private equity firm Advent has profit over 300% on Brazil deal
Private equity firm Advent International had a profit of around 300% in its investment in Brazilian supermarket chain BIG after agreeing to sell it to Carrefour Brasil for 7.5bln reais ($1.4bln), in local currency terms. According to public data, since acquiring 80% of BIG for a token value from Walmart Inc 2-1/2 years ago, Advent spent around 1.6bln reais on the supermarket chain. The final result for the private equity firm will be around 6.6bln reais, considering the price paid by Carrefour and other small previous asset sales by BIG.
Canada: 'Grocery Supply Code of Practice' to improve retailer-supplier relations
After 2 decades of complaints of unfair practices, Canadian grocery retailer Empire Co. Ltd. and Food, Health & Consumer Products of Canada (FHCP), the voice of Canada's food manufacturing sector, have agreed to a ground-breaking proposal for a "Grocery Supply Code of Practice for Canada". The first proposal of its kind in Canada, the draft code aims to stabilize relations between retailers and suppliers by calling for fair and efficient handling of all negotiations and commercial agreements.
US: Harris Teeter to host Supplier Diversity Summit to enhance inclusion efforts, introduce additional diverse supplier products to shelves
Harris Teeter announced that it will invite diverse product suppliers to apply to join a virtual Supplier Diversity Summit. The summit will occur May 3-5, 2021. “This summit will help further Harris Teeter’s overall Diversity, Equity and Inclusion efforts”, said Harris Teeter Senior Vice President of Marketing, Merchandising and Operations, Tammy DeBoer.
US: Whole Foods Market and Headspace team up to support well-being for mind and body this spring
Whole Foods Market and Headspace have combined their expertise to help revitalize consumers’ overall well-being this spring. The cross-platform collaboration includes a mood-brightening IGTV recipe series called Food for Mood, 3 new meditations focused on mindful shopping, cooking and eating, a one-month free trial of Headspace Plus and more.
US: Hy-Vee to hold 2nd ‘Best of Local Brands’ summit
Hy-Vee Inc. plans to host its second “Best of Local Brands” summit May 11-13 to expand and enhance the product offerings at its more than 275 stores across the Midwest. At the first quarterly summit, which took place in February, 52 new brands were chosen for placement in Hy-Vee locations in the coming months.
US: Westside Market NYC sees success with e-commerce platform
Scrambling to find a way to enable online ordering and same-day delivery for customers amid the pandemic, Westside Market NYC last year joined forces with e-commerce platform Homesome, which was able to get the necessary tech up and running quickly at the independent grocer’s 7 locations. Implementation took place immediately after St. Patrick’s Day 2020, with the first Westside Market store ready to go within a mere 3 days, and the rest operational within 5 days. “Once the pandemic hit, we knew something had to change, and we would have no choice but to modernize our online ordering systems”, explained George Zoitas, CEO of Westside Market NYC. “Since partnering with ... Homesome, we have seen a 15-time increase in online ordering across all 7 of our stores”.