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Co-op advances talks to buy Nisa

Aldi Süd to get 'Wonky' fruit and veg line

Ocado teams up with Amazon for grocery shopping by voice
U.K. online grocer Ocado Group Plc is teaming up with Inc. to let shoppers top up their baskets using the U.S. e-commerce giant’s voice-recognition system. The Hatfield, England-based company has developed an app for Amazon’s Alexa that allows customers to add items to their digital shopping lists, keep track of orders and ask for product recommendations simply by speaking. The service is available immediately, the British company said in a statement Tuesday. (Bloomberg)

Russia's Lenta sees sales rise 16.7% in first half

Russian retail group Lenta has said that its first half sales rose 16.7% to RUB 163.5bn. Like for like sales were down 1.8%. The group posted an adjusted EBITDA of RUB 15.6bn for the half year ending 30 June 2017, an increase of 14.2% year on year. Gross margin (21.7%) was down slightly, however, as improvements to supplier terms and the retailer's supply chain were offset by investment in prices, as well as new trade law expenses. (

Aldi Süd launches 'Wonky' fruit and veg range
German discounter Aldi Süd has announced its plans to sell misshapen fruits and vegetables, or 'krummendinger', in an effort to reduce food waste. Aldi Süd is launching the new range with crooked organic carrots, which will be available in stores from the end of August, followed by apples, which will be added by the end of September. The retailer says that the amount of 'wonky' products that appear in a pack will depend on agricultural conditions, such as the weather. (esmmagazine)

El Corte Inglés posts 2% increase in sales in FY 2016
Spanish retailer El Corte Inglés has posted a 2% increase in sales in full year 2016 to €15.51bn. This was lower than the growth rate it posted last year (10%), which the group attributed to sluggish sales at its Hipercor supermarket chain. El Corte Inglés has announced that it plans to merge the Hipercor business into its main operations, in a bid to cut costs. Hipercor, which boasts 43 supermarkets across Spain, posted a 5.7% decrease in sales for the year, to €1.32bn. (

Russia’s O’Key Group sees gross profit up 4.1% in first half

Russia’s O’Key Group has posted a 4.1% increase in gross profit in the first half of the year. Revenue at the group was up 2.7% to RUB 86bn. Revenue in the group’s hypermarket and supermarket segment remained unchanged year-on-year, at RUB 81.26bn, with ‘negative trends’ in the first quarter offset by a stronger second quarter. The group posted a net loss of RUB 1.48bn for the period, which was mainly due to the closure of inefficient stores and related write offs, it said. (

M&S in talks to sell Hong Kong and Macau stores
Marks & Spencer has opened talks to sell its wholly owned Hong Kong and Macau stores to franchise partner Al-Futtaim, the British company said on Wednesday. The food and clothing retailer said it has begun talks on the potential sale of the stores, which Al-Futtaim would continue to operate under the M&S franchise. The talks are expected to take several months to complete. (Reuters)

SuperValu sees off Tesco challenge to remain Ireland’s top grocer

SuperValu remains Ireland’s top grocer, according to the latest Kantar Worldpanel market share figures for the 12 weeks ending 13 August 2017. Musgrave-owned SuperValu stands on 22.2% market share, seeing its sales up 0.4% year-on-year. In second place, just 20 basis points behind on 22.0% share is Tesco, with the retailer posting a 3.4% sales increase. Dunnes Stores, which places third on 21.1% share, saw a 2.0% increase year-on-year. (

Brits pay less than Germans in Lidl
In the UK, we're used to paying more for the same products than foreign shoppers do - particularly since the threat of Brexit's hit the value of the pound. But according to one retail expert's analysis, there's at least one supermarket where the reverse is true. "Over here, supermarket prices are driven down by the fierce competition from the Big Four - Sainsburys, Tesco, Asda and Morrisons - so Lidl has to go lower to compete," Mr Isark tells the Sun. (

UK: Aldi cuts time it takes to pay its small suppliers to 14 days
German retailer Aldi is reducing the time it takes to pay its small suppliers to 14 days. The new terms, effective as of September 11th, will apply to 100 or so suppliers that transact up to €300,000 worth of business annually with Aldi. The terms are very competitive with industry norms. Figures from the Small Firms Association for example, indicate that on average it takes 62 days for a small firm to get paid, even though the majority of contracts offer credit terms of just 30 days. (

UK: Sainsbury’s rolls out Argos click and collect points

UK retailer Sainsbury’s, which owns the general merchandise retailer Argos, has announced plans to roll out click and collect points at 100 convenience stores ahead of the forthcoming Christmas trading period, according to media reports. The move is part of an investment that will see up to 2,000 click and collect points placed in Sainsbury’s stores over the coming years, according to CEO Mike Coupe. (

7-Eleven M’sia 2Q earnings down 33%

7-Eleven Malaysia Holdings Bhd saw a 32.7% decline in net profit to RM10.15m in the second quarter ended June 30, 2017 (2QFY17) from RM15.07m a year ago, dragged down by higher selling and distribution expenses. Quarterly revenue, however, was up 9.8% to RM555.21m in 2QFY17 from RM505.7m in 2QFY16, mainly due to the Hari Raya festive period and new store growth. There was also positive growth in existing stores. (

Co-op advances talks to buy convenience group Nisa Retail
Sky News has learnt that the board of Nisa Retail has granted a period of exclusivity to the Co-op to negotiate a takeover of the member-owned business. It comes just days after Sainsbury's put the brakes on its interest in Nisa amid concerns about competition regulators' likely view of a tie-up. In a message circulated on Wednesday, Peter Hartley, Nisa's chairman, told shareholders that the Co-op had "confirmed, subject to further due diligence, its intention to progress matters as quickly as possible, in the hope that a transaction can be finalised". (

Wal-Mart eyes $316m in Brazil store reforms through 2019
Wal-Mart plans to invest around 1bn reais ($316m) in Brazil through 2019 to refurbish about 120 stores, as larger rivals in Latin America’s biggest economy invest heavily to retain cash-strapped customers. “We’ve already done about 10% of it this year,” Flavio Cotini, Wal-Mart’s CEO in Brazil, told reporters at the Latam Retail Show in Sao Paulo on Tuesday. Wal-Mart is Brazil’s third-largest diversified retailer. (Reuters)

Whole Foods shareholder lawsuit concerning overcharges is dismissed
A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit accusing the former Whole Foods Market Inc and several executives of intentionally defrauding shareholders by routinely overpricing prepackaged products in its supermarkets. U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel rejected arguments that Whole Foods executives had to have known about the overcharges, and that they led to inflated financial results, misstatements about shoppers’ “sentiment and tolerance” for its pricing, and a lower stock price once the truth became known. (Reuters)

US: Marsh Supermarkets get a new name
The Marsh Supermarkets bought by an Ohio-based company in June are getting a new name. Generative Growth II announced Tuesday that the Indiana stores in the following locations will now be called Needler’s Fresh Markets: Indianapolis (2), New Palestine, Marion, Columbus, Hartford City, Elwood, Tipton, Pendleton, Richmond and Greensburg. The stores will also get makeovers. (

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