Coles Group is being sued by Australian watchdog over staff underpayments

Konzum introduces payment in cryptocurrencies

Italy: Gruppo Selex forecasts turnover of €16.7bln in FY 2021
Gruppo Selex has forecast a turnover of €16.7bln for its financial year 2021, which would represent a 3.1% growth compared to 2020. Preliminary results further confirm the group’s position as the 2nd largest player in the modern retail distribution market in Italy, with a 14.5% market share.

Denmark: Dagrofa announces common CSR strategy
Danish retail group Dagrofa has introduced a common CSR strategy for the entire group, running until the end of 2024. It will focus on 3 main areas - climate and sustainable energy, public health and responsible consumption, and sustainable development at a local level.

Australian watchdog sues supermarket chain Coles over staff underpayments
Coles Group, Australia's 2nd-biggest grocery chain, is being sued by the country's industrial relations watchdog for underpaying staff over 3 years, the parties said in separate announcements. In a raft of allegations against one of the country's biggest employers, the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) said Coles underpaid 7,812 employees by A$115.2mln ($81.99mln) between January 2017 and March 2020.

Markai raises $4mln from Pear VC, Sea Capital and others to buy Chinese e-commerce brands
Markai, founded by 2 Stanford business school grads, has joined the fray to buy out Chinese brands seeking global consumers. China is just Markai’s starting point, as the startup plans to hunt down brands from all across Asia and bring them to a global audience. To fund its acquisition activities, Markai recently closed a $4mln seed round led by Pear VC, an early investor in DoorDash and Gusto.

France: Carrefour Occasion launches its product buyback website to give them a 2nd life
Carrefour is continuing with the rollout of its Carrefour Occasion offering, launching its website to help it bolster its commitments to the circular economy, while at the same time helping to protect its customers' purchasing power. This website will sit alongside the existing bricks-and-mortar stores run by Cash Converters, a pioneering brand that is recognised for its expertise on the 2nd-hand market. With the launch of, Carrefour and Cash Converters are seeking to establish themselves as the best solution in terms of price and product mix on the online market.

Croatia's top food retailer introduces payment in cryptocurrencies
Croatia's largest food retailer, Konzum, said that from this month it had introduced an option of paying with cryptocurrencies in its online shops to be the 1st local retailer offering the payment service. Konzum is part of the Fortenova Grupa which is the biggest food producer and retailer in the Balkan region.

Aldi’s Kevin the Carrot named UK’s favourite festive ad for 2021
Aldi’s Kevin the Carrot has been crowned the king of Christmas as consumer research revealed the campaign has been rated as 2021’s best festive ad. According to market research company Kantar, which combined consumer survey responses with facial recognition AI technology, Aldi’s advert was the most effective of the 24 festive adverts tested this year.

Czech e-shops offer support to vendors from closed Christmas markets
Online supermarkets and Koší are giving vendors from Czech Christmas markets the chance to sell their goods online. Under the new state of emergency in the Czech Republic, Christmas markets in the country have been forced to close. Many markets, including the popular one on Prague's Old Town Square, never had the chance to open for the 2021 season. The sudden closure will have a large impact on vendors at the markets, who will miss out on one of the most popular shopping events for the 2nd year in a row. For local farmers and small businesses who have invested resources into products that can no longer be sold after the holiday period, the closure of Christmas markets can be devastating.

Italy: Coop seeks to mitigate price hikes for consumers
Coop Italia is seeking to mitigate the effects of inflation and cost price increases by reducing its margins in the run up to Christmas. President Marco Pedroni told daily newspaper Corriere della Sera that the retailer cooperative is doing its bit to safeguard consumers, employment and Italian-made products.

eCommerce platform Pepper raises $16mln in Series A funding to enhance ordering experience for food distributors
Pepper, the eCommerce platform for food distributors, has raised $16mln in Series A funding that will enhance the ordering experience for distributors servicing over 25,000 restaurants and grocery stores in the U.S. and Canada. Index Ventures led the round with participation from Greylock, Imaginary Ventures, BoxGroup, Moving Capital, and Brett Schulman, bringing the total capital raised to date to $20mln.

Amazon powers up more renewable energy projects
Taking another step in its goal of powering 100% of its business operations with renewable energy by 2025, Amazon announced several new utility-scale wind and solar projects around the world, including 8 in the U.S.

Co-op investing in Western Canada by making largest retail acquisition in its history with the purchase of 181 retail locations
Federated Co-operatives Limited (FCL), on behalf of local Co-ops in the Co-operative Retailing System (CRS), has agreed to invest $264mln to purchase 181 Husky retail fuel sites from certain wholly-owned subsidiaries of Cenovus Energy Inc. This represents the largest retail acquisition in Co-op's history.

US: 7-Eleven and Nuro team up to launch 1st commercial autonomous delivery service in California
7-Eleven, Inc. is bringing a futuristic innovation to Mountain View, California, customers by piloting autonomous delivery with Nuro, a robotics company transforming local commerce with autonomous vehicles. In collaboration with Nuro, 7-Eleven is launching the 1st autonomous commercial delivery in the state of California, enabling its customers in the service area to order through the 7NOW® delivery app to have their products delivered via bot.

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