Kantar: Lidl leaving room to grow in new stores - 
Although the German hard discounter Lidl is building U.S. stores nearly three times the size of counterpart Aldi, Lidl is likely to build its breadth of merchandise inside them gradually, utilizing less floor selling space for new stores, until consumers get used to its offer, according to a research report by Kantar Retail. The gradual increase would provide Lidl's new stores with a built-in means of increasing sales over time, according to Mike Paglia, a Kantar director. (supermarketnews.com)

Wal-Mart to invest $25mn in China food safety research

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and its foundation are investing $25m over five years in food safety research in China, as the world’s largest retailer seeks to strengthen its foothold in the country more than two years after it was hit by high-profile product scandals. (Bloomberg)

The Fresh Market to rollout new logo, lower prices

The Fresh Market, the Greensboro-based boutique grocery, will introduce a new look at its Triad stores next week that includes a new logo and lower prices. The changes, to occur on Wednesday, Oct. 26, are part of a larger "reinvention" of its stores that will be extended to its other locations nationwide. (bizjournals.com)

Ahold Delhaize’s Romanian business sees sales increase
Mega Image, the Romanian-based business owned by Ahold Delhaize, has seen its first-half sales rise to RON 2.2bn (around €488m) in the first half of the year, according to Planet Retail. This is a 32% increase on the performance of the group in the first half of 2015. Profits at the retailer were €22.6m in the period. (esmmagazine.com)

Croatian food retailers continue expansion strategy
Croatian food retailers are continuing to expand their presence, with plans to open new stores in the coming year, according to local daily Poslovni Dnevnik. Market leader Konzum (owned by food-to-retail consortium Agrokor) refurbished 10 existing stores in 2016 and will open 10 new stores. Retailer KTC plans to invest a total of HRK 29m (€3.8m) this year in two new stores. Metro Cash & Carry Hrvatska invested HRK 80m (€10.6m) in 2016, of which HRK 60m was just for moving its center in Split to a new location. (esmmagazine.com)

X5 Retail reports strong Q3 growth

The X5 Retail Group has reported strong sales growth for its fiscal third quarter, helped by a particularly strong performance at its Pyaterochka banner. For the three months to end-September, overall sales rose by 30.2% to 254bn roubles, on like-for-like growth of 9.1%. The group said it was helped by a 3.2% rise in customer traffic. (kamcity.com)

Carrefour's international sales are up

Overall, Carrefour's international sales were up 4.5% on a like-for-like basis. The retailer reported increases in Spain, Italy and Romania, stable sales in Belgium and a slight fall in Poland. In Latin America, like-for-like sales were up by 14.2%, with a 12.4% increase in Brazil and 18.0% in Argentina. Like-for-like sales fell by 5.0% across Carrefour's Asian markets. They were down 7.8% in China, an improvement on the previous period, while in Taiwan sales grew for the seventh quarter in a row. (igd.com)

Spar Croatia to drive short term investment

Spar Croatia has said it will invest €100m in its operations over the next two years. The retailer said that it would spend the money on buying stores, moving away from renting space, building production facilities and renovating existing sites. SPAR Croatia, which operates 52 stores in the country, said its expansion plans would focus on cities by the coast and adjacent islands. (igd.com)

US: Tom Thumb, Albertsons launch home grocery delivery service
Tom Thumb and Albertsons are joining the fast-growing online grocery trend — in a big way. The grocers, both operated by the Albertsons Companies, with 106 stores in Dallas-Fort Worth, today will begin offering customers home delivery of most food and household items. (star-telegram.com)

Supervalu expands e-commerce at retail banners
During Supervalu’s earnings call Wednesday, CEO Mark Gross told investors the company has been testing three e-commerce providers at its retail banners in separate markets. Home delivery and click-and-collect options will be available by the end of the year in 25% of retail stores, which is about 50 stores. (supermarketnews.com)

Poland’s Gastt opts out of further France investment

Polish group Gastt has reportedly opted out of taking over any further ex-Dia outlets in France, after the eight stores it initially took over went bankrupt. French trade publication Lineaires reported that Gastt took over the stores earlier this year, after Carrefour was ordered to dispose of them by the French Antitrust Authority. (esmmagazine.com)

Globus breaks €7bn sales barrier

Germany-based Globus has reported full year sales for the year ending 30 June 2016, saying gross sales rose 1.2% to €7.08 bn. Globus’s hypermarkets saw flat sales in 2016, at €3.28 bn, while its home improvement division saw growth of 5.5%, to €1.63 bn. The integration of Max Bahr and Praktiker stores boosted its home improvement arm, while the expansion in Russia helped drive sales there too. In the Czech Republic Globus said sales rose 1.4% to €952m. (igd.com)

Supervalu experiences major headwinds in Q2

Supervalu’s net sales fell by 4.8% in the second quarter to $3.9bn, with net earnings flat at $31m. Identical store sales fell by 5.2% at Save-A-Lot, the hard discount business it recently reported that it is divesting, and by 5.9% within its other retail business. Second quarter sales within its wholesale division fell by 5.5%. (igd.com)

Hannaford to buy two Bud's Shop 'n Save stores in Maine

Hannaford Supermarkets announced it will buy two stores in Maine from its wholesaler customer, Bud’s Shop ‘n Save. "We have been proud to support these stores as a wholesale supplier for many years and we look forward to serving customers with a familiar team, local products and Hannaford-brand items,” Todd Bullen, a director of operations for Hannaford, said in a press release. (supermarketnews.com)

Mobile phones fuelling growth in online grocery shopping
According to SuperValu, traffic to their website has grown by 50% since the start of 2016. The most “notable factor” in this growth was the use of mobile phones, the spokesperson said. (irishexaminer.com)

German retailer Lidl increase minimum salary
German retailer Lidl, which has some 4,000 employees in Romania, has increased the minimum salary in the company by 30%. Lidl is one of the biggest retailers in Romania. It has a network of about 200 supermarkets and made a turnover of EUR 1.1bn in 2015. (romania-insider.com)

Walmart debuts exclusive restaurant-quality line
Walmart is merchandising a new exclusive line of refrigerated sides called Signature Sidekicks by Robert Irvine, in Garlic Balsamic Broccoli, Sesame Ginger Stir Fry, Braised Collard Greens and Provencal Rataouille varieties. Each bag contains precut and measured vegetables and other ingredients. (supermarketnews.com)

Harris Teeter partners with Shipt in Charlotte, N.C.

Harris Teeter announced plans to expand its e-commerce offerings through grocery delivery service Shipt to the Charlotte, N.C. metro area. Harris Teeter previously partnered with Shipt in the Research Triangle (Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill) area of North Carolina. (supermarketnews.com)

NZ: Foodstuffs wins (another) waste minimisation award
Kiwi-owned supermarket operator Foodstuffs has again had its environmental sustainability efforts recognised, this time by the waste management industry’s WasteMINZ Awards for Excellence. (scoop.co.nz)

Aldi planning new Hungarian DC

Aldi has announced plans to develop a new distribution centre in Hungary, as well as plans to open 50 to 60 stores in the country. According to local newspaper, Figyelő, which was quoted by Barclays European Food Retail Equity Research, the discounter plans to spend between HUF 50bn and HUF 60bn (between €164m and €196m) on its expansion in the country. (esmmagazine.com)

Facebook embraces utility with food ordering
The world’s largest social network platform has launched an array of new features, including the ability to order food (via Delivery.com) without ever leaving its site. Delivery.com empowers the neighborhood economy by allowing customers to order online from their favorite local restaurants, grocery stores, wine and spirits shops, and laundry and dry cleaning providers. (prnewswire.com)

Tesco: Food price rises will be ‘lethal’ for millions
Increasing food prices will be ‘lethal’ for millions of struggling customers and the higher grocery bills will mark damage to consumers, economy and ultimately the business, Matt Davies, UK CEO of Tesco commented. Speaking at the industry conference IGD the other day, he said that the market giant would do anything to make sure the food inflation is kept to a minimum. (internationalsupermarketnews.com)