India: Night delivery new war zone for online grocers; Instamart, Dunzo, Zepto, Blinkit all in race
Grocery ecommerce platforms are looking to open up a new battlefront - night delivery. Swiggy Instamart, the grocery delivery arm of restaurant delivery and search aggregator Swiggy, has extended grocery delivery time until the early hours, starting with select markets - a first for the industry. “We’re now open till 3 am… Get all your 3 am needs taken care of”, Instamart said in text messages sent to customers.
South Africa: Young agritech startup makes farming cool, scores Google funding
AgriKool is an e-marketplace for fresh produce growers around Pietermaritzburg and outlying areas, sourcing a range of vegetables from emerging farmers to sell to informal and formal traders. A Boxer supermarket in Pietermaritzburg was AgriKool's first big retail customer. AgriKool is one of the five South African tech startups that have secured a slice of Google's $4mln funding initiative, the Startups Black Founders Fund (BFF) for Africa, which benefits entrepreneurs from across the continent. A total of 60 startups have been selected for this year.
Countdown confirms NZ Food Price Index in line with higher costs from suppliers
Cost increases requested by suppliers to Countdown averaged 8% in August, with meat (+12.2%), fresh produce (+12.9%) and bakery items (+9.6%) the main drivers. The New Zealand Food Price Index for August was 8.3%.
Polish online B2B market worth €767bln in 2021
Online B2B transactions in Poland were worth more than 767bln euros in 2021. This is an average year on year growth of 8.4%, when compared to the total value in 2016 of 555.3bln euros. Between 2016 and 2021, the market has grown 41.8%. These data are findings in the Discover the largest B2B e-commerce market in CEE report from Marketplanet.
Australia: Food waste start-up Good & Fugly expands
Food waste startup Good & Fugly has made its debut in Melbourne, launching deliveries in the city, following its recent crowdfunding campaign to assist its move down south. After launching in Sydney in 2020, Good & Fugly has delivered more than 200,000 kilograms of ‘quirky’ fruit and vegetables to consumers, helping save produce deemed unsuitable for supermarkets from going to waste.
Carrefour bundles purchasing for six countries
With Carrefour blowing up all partnerships with competitors, the French retailer is setting up its own European buying centre as expected. A purchasing office called Eureka is to open in Madrid in early 2023, reports LSA. The centre will handle purchasing for six countries where Carrefour operates: Belgium, France, Italy, Poland, Romania and Spain.
Welsh supermarket chain Iceland taking the country of Iceland to court
Wales-based supermarket chain Iceland is taking the country of Iceland to court again in a long running battle to trademark the name. Iceland Foods has fought for years to trademark the name of the Nordic island but the Icelandic government has claimed this would stop the country’s businesses from describing their products as Icelandic.
UK: Sainsbury's raises staff pay again and offers food perk
British supermarket group Sainsbury's said it would raise pay for its workers again as it looks to attract and retain staff in a tight labour market. The UK's second largest grocer and one of the country's biggest employers said 127,000 hourly paid workers will get a 25 pence per hour increase from October 16, costing it 20mln pounds ($23.4mln).
Pakistan: How a startup folded just a year after raising $85mln
In early July, things looked rosy at Airlift Technologies Pvt. as it prepared to raise more cash for expansion. Six days later, the startup - one of Pakistan’s most prominent - was bust. The e-commerce company collapsed less than a week after failing to complete a funding round, underscoring how severely the global rout in tech valuations is affecting fragile startups in emerging markets. Airlift had raised $85mln a year earlier - a record for the country - and had curbed spending in a bid to appeal to investors as it worked toward a fresh round. But then the lead backer pulled its commitment, leaving Airlift with no capital to continue and forcing it to abruptly shut down.
UK: Ocado Retail mulls dry ice alternatives as costs soar
British online supermarket Ocado Retail is looking into alternatives to dry ice for its food cooling and storage needs as costs soar for the product, it said. The business, an equal joint venture between Ocado Group and Marks & Spencer, uses dry ice when transporting frozen goods to customers. However, the energy crisis has sent the cost of dry ice surging, adding a potential 15-20mln ($17-23mln) pounds in annualised costs compared with 2021.
Supermarkets use AI to cut prices in war on waste
Supermarkets are using AI to automatically mark down the price of food nearing its expiration date - and prevent it being dumped. Wasteless, an Israeli startup that has pioneered dynamic pricing, says supermarkets using its technology have reduced food waste by as much as 40%. The company helps retailers find the perfect discount, increases their revenues by reducing waste and offers a good deal to the customers.
Aldi overtakes Morrisons as UK's fourth-largest supermarket chain
German-owned discounter Aldi has overtaken Morrisons to become Britain's fourth-biggest supermarket group, helped by its popularity during the cost of living crisis, industry data showed. Market researcher Kantar said Aldi's sales increased 18.7% over the 12 weeks to September 4, taking its UK grocery market share to 9.3% from 8.1% a year ago. Morrisons' sales fell 4.1%, with its share falling to 9.1% from 9.8%. Aldi trails market leader Tesco, Sainsbury's and Asda.
US: Argo AI kicks into high gear to build a business out of AV tech
Argo AI, the autonomous vehicle developer backed by Ford and VW Group, revealed an ecosystem of products and services designed to support commercial delivery and robotaxi operations. The products - a list that includes fleet management software, data analytics, high-definition mapping and cloud-based communication tools - stretches far beyond the self-driving system that allows a vehicle to navigate city streets without a human driver behind the wheel.
US: Wegmans ditches self-scanning app
Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. is dropping its pandemic-era mobile app that allowed shoppers to scan and bag items during their shopping trip. Developed in 2019 and ramped up during the height of COVID-19 safety protocols and practices, the retailer’s Scan app is being discontinued after September 18 due to shoplifting losses.
US: belive.ai - Drive your store with AI
The future of retail chain operations will be supported by computer vision and AI. Knowing this, the French start-up belive.ai recently opened its doors in Atlanta, Georgia, making its solutions available to the North American retail industry market.
US: C&S Wholesale taps Tata Consultancy Services to build new operations platform on Google Cloud
Looking to put supply chain pressures at bay, C&S Wholesale Grocers has partnered with Tata Consultancy Services to build a new operations platform on Google Cloud, the New Hampshire-based wholesale grocer said.