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Aldi is rolling out its partnership with Too Good To Go across all UK stores

Bestway has raised its stake in Sainsbury's to 4.47%

Maxima Estonia names Kristina Mustonen as new CEO
Maxima Estonia has appointed Kristina Mustonen as its sole board member and chief executive officer, effective 1 February 2023. Mustonen succeeds Edvinas Volkas in this role, the retailer noted.

France: E.Leclerc offers a reusable net to its customers buying three fruits or vegetables
Until 21 February 2023 (and since 17 January), E.Leclerc is offering a reusable and washable net to all its customers who buy 3 different fruits and vegetables. In total, more than 3mln nets will be offered over the entire duration of the operation.

UK: Costcutter owner Bestway raises Sainsbury's stake to 4.47%
Retail and wholesale group Bestway, the owner of Costcutter, has raised its stake in Sainsbury's to 4.47%, making it the fifth-largest shareholder of Britain's second largest supermarket group.

Aldi launches Too Good To Go partnership across all UK stores
Aldi is rolling out its partnership with the world’s largest surplus food platform Too Good To Go across all of its 990 UK stores. Following a successful trial last year, the UK’s fastest-growing supermarket is now offering surplus food bags available nationwide, in a bid to tackle food waste while also offering even lower prices to customers. 

Creador, Navegar invest in Philippines-focused discount retail chain DALI Stores
Malaysia-headquartered private equity firm Creador has invested $55mln in Switzerland-based retailer DALI Stores, which operates a chain of discount grocery stores in the Philippines. Creador joined Philippines-based private equity firm Navegar for the investment, which was closed in early January, Creador founder Brahmal Vasudevan told DealStreetAsia.

French retailer Casino says it is in alliance talks with Teract
French retailers Casino and Teract confirmed they had begun exploratory discussions that could lead to the combination of the two groups' distribution activities in France within a single entity controlled by Casino.

Penny Italia targeting 8% share of discount market by 2025
REWE Group-owned discounter Penny Italia is targeting a 8% share of the Italian discounter market by 2025. By the mid part of the decade, the retailer is also hoping to achieve a turnover of €2bln, and operate around 500 stores. The target was revealed by Nicola Pierdomenico, CEO of Penny Italia, in an interview for daily Il Sole 24 Ore.

Belgium: Colruyt workers ease into easy check-out
Above the check-out is a camera that uses artificial intelligence to automatically scan products when they're transferred from one shopping cart to the other. The easy check-out system is currently being tested with real customers at the Colruyt Lowest Prices store of Halle. Based on the success of this test, a further roll-out will be scheduled.

Sweden: Axfood posts retail sales growth of 11.9% in FY 2022
Swedish retailer Axfood has announced that it grew more than twice as much as the market in Q4 and full-year 2022, strengthening its position therein. The company reported 11.9% year-on-year growth in retail sales, to SEK55.7bln (€4.9bln), in its 2022 financial year.

French startup Nudj is championing jackfruit in France after Indian voyage
Nudj founders, brothers Barthélemy Peuchot and Foucauld Peuchot, passionate about the evolution of consumption patterns, spent time racking their brains about how to change the food industry from within. During a trip to India, they discovered the jackfruit, a largely untapped resource in the west, yet a source of natural protein, rich in fibre and vitamins.

Question mark over future of discounter Mere in Bosnia-Herzegovina
Discounter Mere has closed its first store in Bosnia and Herzegovina, less than one year since it commenced operations in the Balkan country. The store in Eastern Sarajevo was opened in May 2022, and was followed by further outlets in Doboj and Prijedor.

Carrefour brings self-checkout service to Bahrain
Carrefour, owned and operated by Majid Al Futtaim in the Kingdom of Bahrain, and in collaboration with CrediMax, has launched the Self-Checkout service - a first-of-its-kind service in the Kingdom at Carrefour City Centre and Bahrain Mall Hypermarkets.

US: New Whole Foods Market in Bozeman, Montana is now open
Whole Foods Market opened its new 31,718-square-foot store in Bozeman, Montana, located at 2905 W. Main Street on February 1, at 9 a.m. The Bozeman location is the first store in Montana for the global natural and organic foods retailer.

US: Costco Wholesale Corporation reports January sales results
Costco Wholesale Corporation (“Costco” or the “Company”) reported net sales of $16.84bln for the retail month of January, the four weeks ended January 29, 2023, an increase of 6.9% from $15.76bln last year. Lunar New Year/Chinese New Year occurred on January 22, 10 days earlier this year. The shift negatively impacted January’s Other International and Total Company sales by approximately 2% and 0.25%, respectively. For the 22 weeks ended January 29, 2023, the Company reported net sales of $99.00bln, an increase of 7.5% from $92.10bln last year.

US: Kroger launches new Ocado ‘spoke’ in South Florida
The Kroger Co. has bolstered its delivery network in South Florida with the opening of an Ocado-automated “spoke” facility in Opa-Locka, Florida. Kroger said that the 60,000-square-foot spoke serves as a last-mile, cross-dock location to extend the reach of a 375,000-square-foot, Ocado-powered customer fulfillment center (CFC) in Groveland, Florida, that began operations in June 2021.

US: Wegmans reaches 110-store mark with 15th store in Virginia
Wegmans Food Markets unveiled a new supermarket in Reston, Virginia, marking its 110th location overall and 15th in the state. The 85,000-square-foot store, at 11950 Hopper St. in Reston, is situated in the $1.4bln Halley Rise mixed-use development.

US: Affordability will top immunity as leading food purchase driver in 2023
According to the annual Pollock Communications and Today's Dietitian "What's Trending in Nutrition" survey, with 757 registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) responding, superfoods are here to stay, and for the first time in 11 years of the survey, the entire top ten superfoods list fits into a plant-based diet: 1. Fermented Foods, such as yogurt, kimchi, kombucha tea and pickled vegetables; 2. Seeds, such as chia and hemp; 3. Blueberries; 4. Avocados; 5. Nuts, including pistachios, almonds and walnuts; 6. Leafy Greens, such as spinach; 7. Aquatic Greens, such as algae, seaweed and sea moss; 8. Green Tea; 9. Ancient Grains; 10. Non-Dairy Milks.

Robots could surpass workers at Amazon by 2030, Cathie Wood says
“We are just at the dawn of the robotics age. And I would say artificial intelligence and battery technology are all a part of that movement as well”, Cathie Wood said. Amazon had more than 1.6mln workers at the end of 2021, according to its most recent annual report. Wood’s Ark Innovation ETF (ARKK) just finished its best month ever, but is still down dramatically over the past two years.

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