India: Grofers is now Blinkit, promises 10-minute delivery
Online grocery delivery firm Grofers, which promises its customers instant delivery in just 10 minutes, has now also changed its name to Blinkit amid rising competition in the quick commerce space. The rebranding seems to suggest that Grofers will deliver products within the blink of an eye. The development happens at a time when the company is in talks to raise $500mln in a fresh round of funding from existing investor Zomato.
Switzerland: Aldi launches new express delivery service for groceries
Aldi Switzerland is launching a new delivery service. “Ordered today, delivered today”, promises the new offer from Aldi Switzerland. The discounter has been testing the delivery service “aldi-now.ch” in Zurich, together with the start-up Annanow AG. Their goal: to deliver the groceries on the same day as the order.
Alibaba leads $100mln round of Chinese supermarket chain
T11, a China-based retail chain focused on fresh food and groceries, has raised US$100mln in a series B round led by Alibaba, reported 36Kr. The round also saw participation from Review Capital and existing investor MSA Capital. T11 uses technology to offer fresh produce items such as fruits and vegetables, baked food, and more at its stores. It offers its services across both online and offline channels.
South Africa: Shoprite Checkers to form joint venture with delivery partner RTT
South Africa's biggest supermarket group Shoprite Holdings said its upmarket grocery chain Checkers has entered into a joint venture agreement with its delivery partner RTT Group, as part of a push to grow its e-commerce business.
Costco opens 2nd store on Chinese mainland
U.S. retail giant Costco opened a new store in the city of Suzhou, east China's Jiangsu Province, which is the 2nd Costco store on the Chinese mainland. The store, located in Suzhou New District, has a total area of more than 51,000 square meters on 3 floors, according to the management committee of the district.
Brazil: Assaí ends year with 2021 outlets, targets 300 by 2022
Brazilian wholesale chain Assaí has reached the milestone of 200 outlets with the opening of a new unit in Curitiba. By the end of 2021, the banner will have invested more than R$2bln (€313mln) and added more than 400,000 square meters of floor space, with the opening of 28 new shops, reports O Estado de Sao Paulo. Elsewhere, Assaí will open its 1st point of sale in Acre this month, extending its presence to 24 states across Brazil.
US: Dollar Tree proposes settlement talks to activist investor Mantle Ridge
Dollar Tree said it offered to explore a settlement with Mantle Ridge and hand a board seat to a former chief executive of a rival retailer, saying the activist investment firm's decision to seek control of its board is "unwarrantedly aggressive."
US: UNFI elevates Mark Bushway to supply chain chief
Mark Bushway has been promoted to chief supply chain officer at United Natural Foods Inc. (UNFI). Plans call for Bushway to start in the new role on January 3, Providence, Rhode Island-based UNFI said. In the c-suite post, he will report to Chief Operating Officer Eric Dorne and oversee the grocery wholesaler’s North America fulfillment network, spanning 56 distributions centers that serve more than 30,000 customer locations.
Walmart launches sustainable supply chain financing program
Walmart is encouraging its suppliers to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions with early invoice payments. The discount giant is working with financial services provider HSBC and environmental non-profit CDP to offer a new supply chain finance program that uses science-based GHG emissions targets. Suppliers taking part in Walmart’s Project Gigaton emissions reduction program now have the option for setting science-based targets and having their targets validated by the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTI), or achieving certain score thresholds on their CDP climate change reports.
US: Wynshop partners with Shipt on delivery services for grocers
Grocers will soon be able to use Shipt's workforce for delivery in as little as an hour for orders placed through their online storefronts on Wynshop’s platform, Wynshop announced. Wynshop, formerly known as ThryveAI, will begin adding access to Shipt's same-day delivery capabilities in early 2022 to online platforms it provides to clients including United Supermarkets and Wakefern. The arrangement addresses the interest by grocers in controlling relationships with e-commerce customers even as they look to 3rd-party logistics providers to help manage their online capabilities.