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GrubMarket: $120mln in an oversubscribed Series E round of funding

Amazon Canada to hire 15,000 new warehouse and distribution workers

US: Hy-Vee hires Jason Farver to lead perishables distribution arm
Jason Farver has joined Hy-Vee as president of Perishable Distributors of Iowa (PDI), a fresh and frozen food distribution subsidiary. Plans call for Farver, currently president of door and countertop manufacturer VT Industries, to start at PDI on October 4, Hy-Vee said. In the role, he will oversee the operations and direct the growth strategy of PDI and other Hy-Vee manufacturing facilities.

US: Walmart says it's looking into fake press release on litecoin tie-up
Walmart Inc said it was looking into how a fake press statement announcing a partnership with litecoin, which briefly led to near 30% gains in the cryptocurrency, was issued by news release distributor GlobeNewswire.

D.C. Attorney General broadens Amazon lawsuit
Washington, D.C., has broadened its antitrust lawsuit against Amazon to challenge the online retailer’s agreements with wholesalers as well as third-party sellers, city Attorney General Karl Racine’s office said. The city sued Amazon in May alleging its requirements barred third-party sellers from selling elsewhere for less than on Amazon. 

US: GrubMarket gobbles up $120mln at a $1bln+ pre-money valuation to take on the food supply chain
GrubMarket reported: "We are excited to announce that we have picked up $120mln in an oversubscribed Series E round of funding, from a wide mix of investors of Liberty Street Funds, Walleye Capital, Japan Post Capital, Joseph Stone Capital, Pegasus Tech Ventures, Tech Pioneers Fund are among the new backers, who are being joined by existing investors Celtic House Asia Partners, INP Capital, Reimagined Ventures, Moringa Capital Management, and others, along with other unnamed participants".

“We’re still Whole Foods”: Life after Amazon
The story of where Whole Foods Market is headed begins where it all started: a mission to create a healthier world by selling healthier foods. “We are a mission-based company”, says Rob Twyman, EVP/Operations at Whole Foods. “We are doing it because we believe in it. We are doing it because it is the right thing to do, and we want to effectively change the world and nourish people and planet. That is a lofty goal, but it is a real goal, it is a heartfelt goal, and it is something we are still very committed to.”

Amazon to hire 15,000 employees across Canada; increase wages
Amazon Canada is hiking wages as it seeks to fill thousands of new jobs against the backdrop of a labour market that has been dramatically altered by the COVID-19 pandemic. The e-commerce giant said it would hire 15,000 new warehouse and distribution workers in communities across the country this fall to support its ongoing Canadian expansion plans.

Ireland: Forecourt retailer Circle K buys 10 Dublin convenience stores
Canadian-owned forecourts group Circle K is seeking to open standalone convenience retail outlets in cities around Ireland after striking its first such deal in Dublin. Circle K, which is owned by listed group Alimentation Couche-Tard, is moving into the Irish town and city centre convenience retailing for the 1st time with the acquisition of 10 high-profile Dublin stores from the Griffin Group, which currently operates them under the Londis banner.

UK: Ocado Retail lost 35mln in orders from warehouse fire
British online supermarket Ocado Retail said a July fire at its largest automated warehouse in Erith, southeast London, cost it around 35mln pounds ($48.5mln) of revenue in its latest quarter. 

Malaysia: Boxed looks to license e-commerce technology internationally
In line with a pending public offering, online bulk-products retailer has licensed its e-commerce platform to Aeon Co. BHD, a mass merchant and grocery store operator and shopping mall developer in Malaysia. Aeon is using Boxed’s proprietary online retail technology to power myAeon2go, a newly launched online grocery service offering in-store pickup and on-demand delivery at more than 40 locations. 

Pasarnow scores $3.3mln seed funding to upgrade Indonesia’s fresh food supply chain
E-grocery platform Pasarnow has raised $3.3mln in funding as it seeks to upgrade Indonesia’s highly fragmented, and often inefficient, supply chain for fresh produce. Jakarta-based VC East Ventures led the round, with Amand Ventures, Prasetia Dwidharma, Skystar Capital, SMDV, and several angel investors also participating.

UK: Tesco zero-waste trial launches at 10 stores in England
Supermarket chain Tesco is to trial its zero-waste shopping service at 10 stores in the East of England. Customers will be able to buy common household goods in reusable packaging that can be returned to the store to be used again. 

Auchan launches 'Pick&Go' service in Portugal
Auchan Retail Portugal has launched a new online shopping pick-up service, directed at urban consumers who value speed and convenience. 2 'Pick&Go' spaces have opened in Lisbon, in Benfica and in Praça Paiva Couceiro, and the service can also be found at the MyAuchan shop on Rua Pedro Nunes.

UK: Morrisons bidder CD&R reaches agreement with pension trustees
Morrisons suitor Clayton Dubilier & Rice said it had reached agreement with the pension trustees of the British supermarket chain to provide additional security and support to the schemes, as it seeks to clinch the deal ahead of a rival bidder.

China plans to break up Ant's Alipay and force creation of separate loans app - FT
Beijing wants to break up Alipay, the hugely popular payments app owned by Jack Ma's Ant Group, and create a separate app for the company's highly profitable loans business, the Financial Times reported.

UK: Ocado Retail has 'small pockets' of poor product availability - chairman
The chairman of online supermarket group Ocado Retail said that although there were "small pockets" of poor product availability currently, it was no worse than the average of the last 18 months despite supply chain disruption across the UK.

UK: Sainsbury’s to close all stores this Boxing Day as thank you to colleagues
Sainsbury’s has confirmed it will keep all stores shut this Boxing Day. Sainsbury’s is the first grocer to announce it is keeping all of its supermarkets, convenience stores and petrol filling stations shut on Sunday 26th December. All Argos and Habitat stores will also stay shut that day.

UK: Back to work shift set to impact on grocery sales, says Kantar
Grocery sales dipped by 1.9% in the most recent 12-week period but still remain well above pre-pandemic levels, according to Kantar figures. Despite the value fall in the period to 5 September, sales were still 8.7% higher than before Covid showing the impact of the pandemic is still being felt across the industry.

UK: Morrisons to trial first ‘zero waste’ stores
Morrisons has announced plans to launch 6 “zero waste” stores which aim to recycle all packaging and unsold food by 2025. The supermarket will also introduce recycling points for customers for products not typically collected on bin days, including wrappers, empty crisp packets and face masks. Bosses said if the trials in 6 stores in Edinburgh are successful, they will roll the format out to all 498 supermarkets across the UK over the next year.

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