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Whole Foods being dropped from Nasdaq-100 index

Amazon denies plans for its own supermarket chain

Amazon denies plans for its own supermarket chain
The rumours surfaced when it became clear that Amazon was trialing a supermarket without cash registers. Amazon's spokesperson Pia Arthur stated in a press release today that those rumours are completely unfounded. "It is absolutely not correct. We have no plans to open 2,000 of anything. Not even close. We are still learning." Nevertheless, many still believe Amazon will soon escape its online arena and join the physical store battle. “It seems evident that Amazon will not remain a "pure player". Pop-up stores, book stores and Amazon GO are trials for different formulas and concepts, to see what works and what does not", RetailDetail's Stefan Van Rompaey said. "Some retail watches think Amazon will acquire a certain department store chain to broaden its scope, which seems a more sensible move than to open 2,000 stores of its own. British supermarket chain Morisson's, which already has close ties to Amazon, has often been mentioned as a possible acquisition target."

Lidl to open 150 stores in Eastern U.S.
German grocery giant Lidl has acquired the site of an aged industrial building in Port Richmond for what may be the expanding chain’s first location in Philadelphia. Lidl’s Arlington, Va.-based U.S. unit paid $2.88 million for two parcels covering nearly four acres at 2270 and 2300 E. Butler St., near Aramingo Avenue, according to city property records. The discount-oriented retailer would be taking a bold step by putting one of its first stores in a shopping district that other new entrants to the region might consider too far off the beaten path, Lars Kerstein, a vice president with brokerage Metro Commercial Real Estate, said in an interview last week.

Lidl Stiftung & Co. KG, a unit of the Schwarz Gruppe grocery conglomerate, has been quietly identifying store locations along the East Coast since establishing its U.S. headquarters in mid-2015. It aims to eventually own and operate 150 stores in the eastern United States, according to the German Embassy’s website. Its first stores are expected to open by 2018, company officials have said.

Kroger poised to buy Walgreens/Rite Aid stores
Kroger Co. could be close to wrapping up a deal to buy some of the Walgreens and Rite Aid stores that Walgreens needs to divest when it completes its acquisition of the drug store chain. The deal involving multiple buyers for nearly 1,000 stores should be finalized by year-end, an attorney told mergers and acquisitions reporting website CTFN.

Whole Foods being dropped from Nasdaq-100 index
The Nasdaq stock exchange is dropping Austin-based Whole Foods Market from its Nasdaq-100 index — a reminder of the organic food giant’s continued battle against growing competition. The Nasdaq-100 index, which was created in 1985, is composed of the 100 largest non-financial companies listed on the Nasdaq, based on market capitalization, or the value of the company’s shares, according to the Nasdaq. Whole Foods’ market cap has declined from more than $22 billion in 2013 to about $9.9 billion currently, according to data from Yahoo Finance.

Italian co-op’s ‘supermarket of the future’ transforms the shopping experience
Italy’s largest supermarket chain Coop Italia has unveiled its “supermarket of the future” which offers an innovative and personalised shopping experience. The flagship store, within the Bicocca University campus in Milan, features large interactive tables and real-time data screens that provide product information and personalise the shopping trip. Coop Italia has also re-thought the shelving layout, saying the new look of the shop “merges the physical and digital” worlds and creates the feel of an open-air market.

Ahold Delhaize commits to doubling e-commerce sales by 2020
The potential for growth of Ahold Delhaize's e-commerce business stems in part from the relatively small number of consumers who regularly buy their groceries online. That number is quickly increasing, but the retailer still has a large base of consumers to target to sign up for Peapod. But having an online grocery shopping platform isn't just something that's nice to have. Amazon recently unveiled its Amazon Go stores, which will be brick-and-mortar grocery stores with no checkouts. Instead, shoppers use an app to select and pay for purchases. Now that Amazon is making the leap from e-commerce to brick-and-mortar, traditionally in-store grocery retailers will need to embrace e-commerce sooner than later to remain competitive.

Grocery retailer gets EPA Platinum certified
New Seasons Market in Mercer Island, Washington, has gone platinum. The new supermarket received EPA GreenChill Platinum Certification for its efforts in reducing refrigerant emissions (by at least 95%). The 37,000-sq.-ft. store uses a natural refrigerant solution designed for minimal greenhouse gas emissions and superior energy efficiency. The solution, Hussmann’s Purity Transcritical CO2 refrigeration system, operates efficiently in low, medium and high temperature applications and can be used in combination with all three.

Mercadona to build logistic center in Valencia
Supermarket chain Mercadona is planning to build a new logistics center at Parc Sagunt in Valencia. The company has purchased a 358,270 sqm plot for €24m. The facility will centralize product storage and distribution to the company’s other logistics centers.The completion date has not been established yet. Currently, Mercadona operates 13 logistics centers and three satellite warehouses in Spain, investing €700m in its logistic platforms in recent years.

Kroger to replace former Kmart store in Warren
Warren officials have approved plans for a new Kroger grocery store to replace a former Kmart building that has been vacant for years. The grocer expects to build one of its Kroger Marketplace stores and a fuel center at the northeast corner of 13 Mile Road and Schoenherr, the Macomb Daily reported. With approximately 128,000 square feet of floor space, it will be the chain’s largest store and the latest of its flagship designs. An outdoor café is also in the design along with a fuel center.

UK supermarket chain Lidl to open London Gateway warehouse
DP World has signed a deal with UK supermarket Lidl for a distribution facility at its vast London Gateway development. Lidl UK said it would begin operating out of the 187,000-square-foot distribution facility next to the deepwater port on the banks of the Thames in Thurrock, Essex, from February next year. In a statement on Monday, DP World said that Lidl would occupy the warehouse areas of its Logistics Centre.