US: H-E-B makes curbside grocery purchasing services free
Texas-based grocery store H-E-B announced that it would make curbside pickup services free at all curbside locations across the state. Previously, curbside shoppers were charged a $4.95 fee on all orders, but moving forward that fee will be waived on purchases of $35 or more. Orders worth less than $35 will have a $2.95 "small basket surcharge" attached.
Amazon Go Grocery is gone
Amazon is going in a fresh new direction with some of its retail banner names. “To simplify the experience for our customers, we’re rebranding our Amazon Go Grocery stores to Amazon Fresh”, an Amazon spokesperson told Progressive Grocer. The company is beginning the transition by closing its Amazon Go Grocery store in Redmond, Washington, and moving those employees to a nearby Amazon Fresh store in Bellevue, Washington. “The other Amazon Go Grocery in Capitol Hill, Seattle, will remain open and will be rebranded to Amazon Fresh”, the spokesperson added.
US: Performance Food Group Company to acquire Core-Mark
Performance Food Group Company (PFG) and Core-Mark Holding Company, Inc. (Core-Mark) announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement pursuant to which PFG will acquire Core-Mark in a stock and cash transaction.
US: Walmart Q1 comp growth better than expected
A first-quarter same-store sales increase of 6%, aided by federal stimulus payments and the continued strength of digitally enabled sales, has enabled Walmart to blow past analysts’ profit forecasts. Walmart said that sales at its U.S. stores division increased 5% to $93.1bln, while operating profit surged 26.8% to $5.4bln. Traffic to stores declined 3.2%, transaction sizes increased 9.5%, and e-commerce growth, which includes digitally enabled sales fulfilled by stores, increased 37%. The company also noted that it gained market share.
Exceptional growth for Spar
Spar International has achieved strong results during the pandemic: the chain's worldwide turnover grew by 7.4 %. This is proof of the essential role independent retailers play in their local communities, the organisation says. In Western Europe, sales growth amounted to an exceptional 12 %, with the Netherlands (+ 23.5 %) and Austria (+ 16 %) standing out. The chain is also active in Central and Eastern Europe (+ 8.9 %), in Africa and the Middle East (+ 2.8 %) and in Asia (+ 1.5 %). At the end of 2020, Spar had 13,501 stores in 48 countries. The brand continues to expand: last year, the organisation started up in Ghana, where ten stores have since been opened.
Leading Russian supermarket chain Magnit buys rival Dixy
Russia’s regional supermarket specialist and one of the two biggest chains Magnit is in a deal to take over rival Dixy and add over 2,500 supermarkets to its distribution network, almost doubling its size in the process, Magnit said in a press release. Magnit will acquire the shares in Dixy through its main operating subsidiary Tander and take over the 2,651 stores in Russia owned by the Dixy Holding Limited.
Central England Co-operative cuts food waste by 40% thanks to ground-breaking schemes
Central England Co-op has revealed that it has reduced its food waste by 40% during the past 3 years. The retailer, which has over 240 food stores across 16 counties, announced that its food waste levels dropped from 2,445 tonnes in 2017 to 1,085 tonnes in 2020. This reduction has been achieved by improving ordering processes and as a result of its pioneering food redistribution partnership with FareShare Midlands. The scheme allows the retailer to ensure 100% of its best before products are handed out to hundreds of local good causes.
ALDI Australia is finally launching an online store
As far as affordable groceries are concerned, ALDI is well ahead of the pack. But when it comes to their online offering, the discount supermarket chain has remained decidedly offline - until now. The online store is set to launch this week and will allow customers in Greater Metro Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria to purchase an exclusive range of Special Buys products.
UK: Sir Dave Lewis leaves Tesco with £1.6mln pay packet
Former Tesco boss Sir Dave Lewis walked away from the supermarket giant with a £1.6mln pay packet last year, the group's annual report has revealed. Sir Dave stepped down from the retailer in September after turning around its fortunes over the past 6 years following its major accounting scandal.
Alibaba, partners invest $400mln in Vietnam’s Masan Group to expand online groceries business
Alibaba Group and private equity firm Baring Private Equity Asia announced their participation in a US$400mln investment in Vietnam’s retail giant Masan Group, giving a boost to Alibaba’s ecommerce platform Lazada to compete in the online groceries business.
Lenta to acquire Billa Russia to become #2 supermarket operator in Moscow
Lenta LLC, an indirect subsidiary of Lenta IPJSC, one of the largest multi-format retail chains in Russia, announced an agreement to acquire the supermarkets business of Billa Russia GmbH (“Billa Russia”) for EUR215mln in cash. The acquisition significantly accelerates Lenta's expansion in Moscow, adding prime retail locations that represent mature retail properties with a high sales density. As a result of the transaction, Lenta will have a total food retail market share of approximately 3% in Moscow and the Moscow region.