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Walgreens Boots Alliance Names James SVP And Boots President, Managing Director

January 19, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc., said it has named Sebastian James as senior vice president and president and managing director of the company's Boots division. James will join the company in the summer of 2018, with his appointment effective on September 1, 2018, the start of the company's new fiscal year. He will report to Walgreens Boots Alliance co-chief operating officer, Alex Gourlay.
"Walgreens Boots Alliance Appoints Sebastian James as Senior Vice President and President and Managing Director of Boots", Walgreens Boots Alliance, January 19, 2018, © Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc.
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Target Launches Good Chemistry Brand Of Fragrances

January 18, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Target said it plans to launch Good Chemistry, the retailer's first exclusive fragrance brand. According to the company, the brand includes four collections it says are inspired by different personalities: Confident and Charming, Good and Grounded, Vibrant and Playful, and Cool and Collected. Featuring paraben-free scents, the vegan fragrances are made with essential oils and will be available at all Target branches from January 21, 2018.
"Say Hello to Good Chemistry, Target’s First Exclusive Fragrance Brand", Target, January 18, 2018, © Target Brands, Inc.
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Lidl Launches Line Of Skincare Products In UK

January 18, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Discount retailer Lidl has launched the Cien Cellular Beauty line of skincare products in the UK. With an affordable price of ₤15, the products contain ingredients similar to those used in the La Prairie Cellular Radiance Cream, which cost almost ₤500. With every product costing ₤3.49, the range includes a day cream, night cream, and serum.
Anna Johnstone, "Lidl are launching a £3.49 cellular beauty cream – and it costs £490 less than La Prairie’s version", The Sun, January 18, 2018, © News Group Newspapers Limited
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Walmart Names McKenna Head Of International Business

January 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Walmart has named its chief operating officer for its domestic operations, Judith McKenna, to head the retail giant's international unit. McKenna's appointment marks a significant milestone for women executives at Walmart, with the international unit viewed as a “stepping stone” to the company's CEO job. Other announcements made by the retailer include plans to raise starting salary to $11 an hour and to close 63 Sam's Club stores.
Matthew Boyle, "Wal-Mart Makes Judith McKenna Its International Chief", Bloomberg, January 17, 2018, © Bloomberg L.P.
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Walmart Dismisses Thousands Of Store Co-Managers

January 13, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Walmart is reportedly planning to eliminate about 3,500 co-manager positions in the US market. According to reports, the planned move is aimed at removing “poor performers” and provide “clearer paths to leadership” for aspiring store managers. Meanwhile, the company announced plans to raise its starting salary to $11 an hour and spend $400 million in one-time bonuses to employees.
Matthew Boyle, "Wal-Mart to Cut Thousands of Store-Management Roles", Bloomberg, January 13, 2018, © Bloomberg L.P.
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Walmart Brazil Plans To Combine Physical Stores With Online Retail

January 9, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Walmart Brazil said it plans to spend $464 million in the next four years to integrate its brick-and-mortar stores with the company's online retail operations. Also, the retailer said it will expand its e-commerce platform to allow third-party retailers to sell goods on its online marketplace.
Ivanha Paz, "Walmart Brazil Is Integrating Physical And Online Retail", PSFK, January 09, 2018, © PSFK LLC
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Sephora India Plans To Open More Stores In The Country

January 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Sephora India plans to expand its store network in the country by opening 10-12 stores in the coming 15 months. At present, the beauty retailer, a joint venture between Sephora and Arvind Ltd., operates 13 company-owned retail branches in the country's metropolitan centers. India's beauty and grooming market, valued at $8 billion, is expanding at a compounded annual growth rate of 18 percent, with the premium segment growing at a faster rate of about 28 percent.
Shobha Roy, "French cosmetics retailer Sephora to deck up India in premium products", The Hindu Business Line, January 08, 2018, © The Hindu Business Line
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Bottled Cold Brew Line Expands Tiesta Tea’s Portfolio

January 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
U.S. loose tea maker Tiesta Tea has entered the RTD cold brew tea market with a line of five bottled variants labeled by function (i.e., Energizer, Slenderizer, Eternity, Immunity, and Relaxer) to help shoppers select the most appropriate product. Bottles are priced at $2.99, are labeled with major ingredients featured prominently, and are sold at Target. The cold brew tea market continues to attract consumer interest: online searches for “cold brew tea” ranked fourth in the U.S. and U.K. between April 2015 and March 2017, according to Google. The company says cold-brewing tea is slower, but results in a more potent and smoother-tasting tea.
Mary Ellen Shoup, "Tiesta Tea Launches Cold Brew Bottled Tea Line in Target Stores", BeverageDaily.com, January 08, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Kroger Continues To Expand Its Clean-Label Product Offerings

January 3, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Kroger’s “Simple Truth” product line, which are free from more than a hundred artificial preservatives and other undesirable ingredients such as GMOs and antibiotics, is being expanded, the company announced. Simple Truth brand includes more than 1,400 natural and organic products in categories such as grocery, meat, produce, deli, bakery, baby, household essentials and personal care. New Simple Truth products will debut this year that “align with customer trends, including increasingly popular categories like beverage, snacking and non-animal proteins." The company said Simple Truth 3rd quarter sales grew 19 percent.  [Image Credit: © Kroger ]
Alissa Marchant, "Kroger Will Expand Its Simple Truth Lines to ‘Align With Customer Trends’", The Shelby Report, January 03, 2018, © The Shelby Report
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Amazon's Mexico Initiatives Gain Recognition From Euromonitor

January 2, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
In the second half of 2017, online retailer Amazon launched three initiatives in Mexico, market research firm Euromonitor found interesting. In October 2017, the online retailer launched Amazon Cash, a service that allows consumers to load their Amazon accounts with credit by paying in cash at retail locations across the country. Also, Amazon launched its Handmade marketplace for artisan-made products, including jewelry, home décor, and accessories. Amazon also increased its focus on fast-moving consumer goods, such as pet care, beauty, and home care products.
Amanda Bourlier, "Three Interesting Initiatives by Amazon in Mexico", Euromonitor International, January 02, 2018, © Euromonitor
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FMCG Spending Grows In China, Report Shows

December 20, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Consumer spending on fast-moving consumer goods in China grew 5.5 percent during the 12-week period ending November 3, 2017, compared with the same period in the previous year, according to Kantar Worldpanel. Data from the market research firm revealed modern trade expanded 3.1 percent during the period, faster than the same period in the previous year. Also, smaller-store formats grew the fastest, with supermarket and convenience stores growing by 3.9 percent and 4.8 percent, respectively, data showed. Among China's largest retailers, Yonghui grew the fastest at 11 percent, while Sun Art group, owner of the RT-mart brand, grew 5.7 percent, reinforcing its market-leading status.
"FMCG in China reported new record recovery", Kantar Worldpanel, December 20, 2017, © Kantar Worldpanel
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Big Grocery Chains Can Do A Lot To Reduce Food Waste

December 19, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Three business and management scholars writing in the Harvard Business Review suggest several ways large food retailers – Kroger, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Carrefour, Walmart, etc. – can help reduce food waste in their supply chain, stores, and communities. The four-pronged strategy includes the following suggestions: upgrade inventory systems with the latest technology; partner with farms, where seven percent of U.S. produce is left unharvested; modify or eliminate traditional store practices that increase waste, e.g., focusing too heavily on the cosmetics of produce; and team up with consumers, only three percent of whom attach a social stigma to throwing away food. [Image Credit: © Walmart ]
Yasemin Y. Kor et al., "How Large Food Retailers Can Help Solve the Food Waste Crisis", Harvard Business Review, December 19, 2017, © Harvard Business School Publishing
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Decorate A Yule Log Cake At Home With A Kit From La Madeleine Bakery

December 7, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
La Madeleine French-style bakery has created for the holiday season a decorate-it-yourself kit specifically for yule log cakes, known in France as Bûche de Noël. The kit enables customers to follow the French Christmas tradition of decorating and eating the Bûche de Noël at home with family and friends. The yule log cake starts as a vanilla sheet cake that is topped with chocolate mousse, then rolled into the iconic yule log shape. A fully decorated take-out cake is available for about $32.00. La Madeleine has more than 80 corporate and franchised bakery-cafés in ten states and Washington, D.C. [Image Credit: © La Madeleine ]
"La Madeleine Introduces New Decorate Your Own Bûche de Noël Kit for the Holiday Season", News release, La Madeleine French Bakery & Café, December 07, 2017, © La Madeleine French Bakery & Café
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Wal-Mart Stores To Become Walmart Inc. In February

December 6, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Wal-Mart Stores is changing its legal name to Walmart Inc. effective on February 1 to reflect the fact that it is now serving customers in several different channels besides brick-and-mortar stores. The non-store channels include mobile devices, online, and pickup and delivery. CEO Doug McMillon said the company will continue to invest in its stores, but it felt that “it was best to have a name that was consistent with the idea that you can shop us however you like as a customer.” The company has more than 11,600 stores and clubs in 28 countries. [Image Credit: © Walmart ]
"Walmart Changes its Legal Name to Reflect How Customers Want to Shop", News release, Walmart, December 06, 2017, © Walmart Inc.
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Minnesota Bakery Is Famous For Its “Texas Doughnuts”

December 5, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Hans’ Bakery in Minnesota continues a tradition begun in the 1970s of baking massive glazed or chocolate-covered treats known as “Texas doughnuts.” The pastries are about five times the size of a normal doughnut – as big as your head, as some say – and are a hit on social media. People flock to Hans’ Bakery just to take selfies holding them next to their faces or taking bites. The original Hans’ Bakery closed in 2010, but after a couple of personal and financial setbacks, new owner Kelly Olsen decided to revive it. The Food Network followed her journey. The shop re-opened in 2014 and became – along with its giant-size doughnuts – an instant hit. 
 
 
Sharyn Jackson, "Minnesota Bakery’s Doughnut is ‘as big as Your Head’", TheStar.com, December 05, 2017, © Toronto Star Newspapers Ltd.
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For One Maryland Baker, Breadmaking Is Closely Linked To The Soil

November 28, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
A Maryland baker is taking breadmaking beyond the mere mixture of water, flour, and yeast to the higher art of crafting delicious loaves only from ingredients grown organically by a local farmer. Jonathan Bethony’s “horse bread,” for example, is made with field peas, sorghum, millet, mustard seed, and camelina – all provided by an organic farmer, who grows only what he needs to keep his land healthy and ready to produce more traditional wheat. Bethony mills the grains at his bakery. He never sifts, so the nutritious oils and bran remain in his bread and pastries. Chef and author Dan Barber says Bethony’s somewhat spiritual techniques may seem old-fashioned, but they’re actually rather futuristic: “You’re basically looking at the Steve Jobs of bread.” 
Jane Black, "This New Bakery is Taking Local Grains to Another Level — and the Results Should Have You Standing in Line", The Washington Post, November 28, 2017, © The Washington Post
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Restaurants Can’t Ignore Customers Looking To Avoid Certain Foods

November 21, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Big restaurant chains are swerving from their standardized approach to foods and beverages to better serve customers trying to avoid gluten and dairy. Customers with food intolerances or allergies, or who are following avoidance diets, have become a market simply too large to ignore. Starbucks, for example, now sells a hot chocolate drink made with steamed almond milk. California Pizza Kitchen offers a gluten-free cauliflower crust for those who don’t eat wheat-based foods. Industry research has found that lactose comes in third, after high fructose corn syrup and GMOs, as America’s most-avoided ingredients. Gluten and wheat came in at No. 7. [Image Credit: © Starbucks ]
Zlati Meyer, "Starbucks, Other Chains Cater to Customers Who Avoid Dairy, Gluten", USA Today, November 21, 2017, © USA Today
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Christina Minardi To Help Manage Whole Foods’ Integration With Amazon

November 17, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Former Northeast regional president Christina Minardi was promoted to executive VP of operations for Whole Foods Market. As a regional president, Minardi was responsible for 40 stores in three states. Minardi will now lead four regions and help with the integration with Amazon. Her new responsibilities will include re-imagining the customer experience and driving e-commerce initiatives.  [Image Credit: © Christina Minardi / Twitter]
"Whole Foods Market Names Christina Minardi Executive Vice President of Operations", News release, Whole Foods Market, November 17, 2017, © Whole Foods Market
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Successful Innovators Embrace Failure

November 10, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
While many top executives pay li[p service to the virtues of innovation and creativity, they fear mistakes, missteps, and disappointments. Creativity and innovation disappear. People and organizations need to keep learning as the world changes, or they will stop growing and evolving. One of the reasons for the success of companies like Netflix, Amazon.com, and Coca-Cola, is that their leadership embrace failure as a learning and innovation tool. Coke CEO James Quincey, for example, recently told his executives to shed their fear of failure – remember the “New Coke” fiasco? – so they could really ramp up innovation. “If we’re not making mistakes,” Quincey said, “we’re not trying hard enough.”
Bill Taylor, "How Coca-Cola, Netflix, and Amazon Learn from Failure", Harvard Business Review, November 10, 2017, © Harvard Business School Publishing
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Carrefour Brasil Reports Strong Profit Gains For 3Q 2017

November 9, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Grupo Carrefour Brasil, French retailer Carrefour's Brazilian unit, reported net profit almost doubled to 581 million reais, or $179 million, in the third quarter of 2017. For the same quarter in the previous year, the company reported net profit of 292 million reais. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization was 845 million reais, an increase of 6.9 percent compared with the same period in the previous year.
Gram Slattery and Bruno Federowski, "UPDATE 1-Carrefour Brasil's third-quarter profit jumps on cash-and-carry sales", Reuters , November 09, 2017, © Reuters
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Bezos Aide Steve Keller To Helm Amazon’s Delivery, Grocery, Store Ventures

November 9, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos has given a longtime aide responsibility for Prime Now, AmazonFresh, as well as the $13.5-billion Whole Foods Market acquisition and brick-and-mortar book and convenience stores. The idea, according to observers, is to facilitate changes across the rapid-delivery and grocery-delivery operations, and the physical facilities. Steve Kessel [left] spent several years managing Amazon’s digital ventures, including books and music. His teams developed the Kindle e-reader Fire tablet in late 2011. After a four-year sabbatical, he returned in 2015 to oversee efforts to reimagine the in-store experience. [Image Credit: © Amazon.com]
Laura Stevens, "Amazon Puts Whole Foods, Delivery Units Under Bezos Lieutenant", The Wall Street Journal, November 09, 2017, © Dow Jones & Company, Inc
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Ahold USA Earns Perfect Survey Score On LGBT Workplace Equality

November 9, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Ahold USA, the parent company of supermarket chains Stop & Shop, Giant, and Martin’s, as well as the grocery shopping/delivery company Peapod, received a perfect score on the 2018 Corporate Equality Index (CEI) administered by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. The national benchmarking survey and report evaluates corporate policies and practices lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) workplace equality. The high score earned Ahold USA the designation as a “Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality.” [Image Credit: © HRC]
"Ahold USA Earns Top Marks In 2018 Corporate Equality Index", News release, Ahold, November 09, 2017, © Ahold
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Aldi Customers Using The Venmo Payment App Can Donate Meals To Needy

November 7, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Discount grocery chain Aldi has partnered with the PayPal Venmo payment app to donate Thanksgiving meals to Feeding America. The meals are automatically donated every time a Venmo user adds a Turkey Hand Thanksgiving emoji on the payment screen. Feeding America annually provides meals to more than 46 million people through a network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs. Germany-based Aldi operates 1,700 stores in 35 U.S. states. [Image Credit: ©   Aldi]
Chantal Tode, Robert Williams, "Aldi Partners with Venmo for Emoji-Based Holiday Giving Campaign", Mobile Marketer, November 07, 2017, © Industry Dive
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Whole Foods’ Top Trends In Beverage Ingredients And Formats

November 6, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Floral-flavored beverages are among the top food trends for 2018 spotlighted by the global buyers at Whole Foods Market. Whole flowers and petals like lavender, rose, hibiscus, and elderflower have made their way into lattés, cocktails, and sparkling waters. Powders like matcha, maca root and cacao offer an alternative to coffee. Functional mushrooms, including reishi, chaga, cordyceps, and lion’s mane star, are showing up in bottled drinks, coffees, smoothies, and teas. Plant-based ingredients and proteins (e.g., pili nuts, peas, bananas, macadamia nuts, pecans) are being used in nut milks and yogurts. Last but not least: flavored sparkling waters include plant-derived options from Sap! (made with maple and birch) and sparkling cold brew from Stumptown. “Mocktails” are being made with Topo Chico and Whole Foods fizzy waters.
"Whole Foods Market Reveals Top Food Trends for 2018", News release, Whole Foods Market, November 06, 2017, © Whole Foods Market
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Amazon Closes Two Whole Foods Stores In UK

November 6, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Online retailer Amazon said it plans to close two Whole Foods stores in the UK. Included in the shutdown list are the stores in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, and in Giffnock, East Renfrewshire, cutting the number of Whole Foods store in the country down to seven. About 150 people work at the two stores.
Ashley Armstrong, "Amazon closes two UK Whole Foods stores just two months after completing its £10.7bn takeover", Telegraph, November 06, 2017, © Telegraph Media Group Limited
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Asda Appoints Former Carrefour Merchandising Executive As CMO

November 6, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Walmart-owned UK retailer Asda has appointed Jesus Lorente, Carrefour's former head of merchandising for its operations in Spain, as its new chief merchandising officer. Lorente will succeed Andrew Moore who is retiring in January 2018. Lorente's appointment follows Asda's announcement of deputy chief executive Roger Burnley's promotion to replace current CEO Sean Clarke in January 1, 2018.
Luke Tugby, "Asda names ex-Carrefour executive Jesús Lorente as new merchandising boss", Retail Week, November 06, 2017, © Ascential Information Services Limited
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Sean Clarke Leaves CEO Position At Walmart’s Asda Unit

October 30, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Roger Burnley [left] will take over as CEO of Walmart’s British supermarket chain Asda as of January 1, 2018, from Sean Clarke, who worked closely with Burnley over the past year as deputy CEO. After December, Clarke will take “some time out and will then remain engaged with Walmart,” Walmart International CEO Dave Cheesewright said. Clarke has worked in five of Walmart’s international markets, including a stint as CEO of Walmart China.  [Image Credit: ©   Asda ]
"Roger Burnley appointed Asda President and CEO from 1 January 2018", News release, Asda, October 30, 2017, © Asda
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Walmart Launches Supermercado Retail Concept In Brazil

October 28, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Walmart Brasil has launched its Walmart Supermercado retail concept in Brazil. Supported with a R$500 million investment, the business transformation project will see 120 Bompreco, Nacional, and Mercadorama supermarkets adopting the new retail brand during the next four years. Walmart opened its first two Walmart Supermercado stores in Curitiba.
"Walmart Launches New Supermarket Concept In Brazil", European Supermarket Magazine, October 28, 2017, © European Supermarket Magazine
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Data Analytics Platform Helps Tesco India Detect, Prevent Shopping Fraud

October 27, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
The Indian technology center for supermarket chain Tesco has created a platform and team that detects online and offline fraud involving its massive amounts of collected customer data. The 18-member staff is focused on combating fraud for online businesses (food and non-food), buyer-supplier collusion fraud, and employee fraud at checkout counters. The platform is programmed to detect anomalies in purchasing patterns that might indicate fraud, such as bulk purchases of products like alcohol and cigarettes. 
"Tesco unit builds anti-fraud platform for online businesses", Economic Times, October 27, 2017, © Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd.
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Carrefour Brazil Posts Strong Revenue Performance In 3Q 2017

October 18, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Carrefour reported its wholesale unit Atacadao posted sales of R$8.5 billion in the third quarter of 2017, an increase of 5.6 percent compared with the same quarter in the previous year. Carrefour Retail reported sales grew 5.0 percent to R$3.7 billion, with life-for-like sales rising 2.5 percent and total gross sales jumping 7.1 percent in the first nine months to RS11.2 billion.
"Carrefour Brazil Sales Growth in Q3 amid sharp food Deflation", Carrefour Brazil, October 18, 2017, © Carrefour
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Carrefour Posts Slightly Better Sales Numbers In 3Q 2017

October 18, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Carrefour reported sales rose 0.5 percent on a like-for-like basis to €21.859 billion in the third quarter of 2017, compared with the same period in the previous year. Effect of currency on the company's revenue was negative 1.5 percent during the quarter, while effects of petrol and calendar were neutral. At constant exchange rates, total sales increased 1.9 percent. Like-for-like sales in France declined 0.9 percent, the company said.
"Carrefour Third Quarter 2017 Sales", Carrefour, October 18, 2017, © Carrefour
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Kroger Reveals Leadership Changes For Central And QFC Divisions

October 17, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Kroger Co. revealed that Central division president Katie Wolfram has retired, with QFC division president Pam Matthews promoted to succeed her. Also, the retailer said it has appointed Suzy Monford as president of the QFC division.
"Kroger Announces Retirement of Katie Wolfram and Names New Leadership for the Central and QFC Divisions", Kroger , October 17, 2017, © The Kroger Co.
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The Body Shop Launches Asian-Themed Skincare Products In New Zealand

October 16, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Beauty retailer The Body Shop has introduced the Japanese Matcha Tea Pollution Clearing Mask skincare product in New Zealand. According to the company, the product features the antioxidant properties of Japan's matcha green tea and dandelion extracts from France. Also, the retailer announced the Chinese Ginseng & Rice cleanser and toner, the Clarifying Polishing Powder Wash, and the Clarifying Milky Toner.
Portia Gascoigne, "Face the good stuff with the Body Shop’s new Asian fusion range", Lucire, October 16, 2017, © JY&A Media, a division of Jack Yan & Associates
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Carrefour Brasil Introduces Online Shopping Service In Sao Paul

October 10, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Grupo Carrefour Brasil, the French retailer's unit in Brazil, plans to launch an online grocery shopping and rewards platform in Sao Paulo. After raising $1.6 billion in an IPO in July 2017, the company will launch the services through the Meu Carrefour mobile app. According to the company, which has 4 million registered online users, it plans to issue about 100 million coupons each month through the mobile app.
Gram Slattery, "Carrefour Brasil opens online grocery shopping in Sao Paulo", Reuters, October 10, 2017, © Reuters
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Aldi Plans To Build ₤75-Million Warehouse In UK

October 9, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
German discount retailer Aldi plans to invest ₤75 million to build a distribution center in Bedford, England, to support the company's growing network in the UK. Aldi said it remains committed to expansion plans in the UK retail market despite reporting its third year of declining profit. By 2022, the retailer expects to have 1,000 stores in the country from its current 726 locations.
Polina Ivanova, "German retailer Aldi to build 75 million pound UK distribution centre", Reuters, October 09, 2017, © Reuters
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Lidl Sees Share Of Shopper Traffic Drop In US

October 8, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Months after opening its stores in the US in June 2017, German discount retailer Lidl saw its share of store visits declined, according to an analysis by location-based data firm inMarket. Local rivals, including Kroger Co. and Wal-Mart, have recovered much of market share they lost when Lidl after Lidl opened its first nine US stores in June 15. Lidl grabbed 11 percent of customer visits to traditional grocers in nine markets in Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina, inMarket data revealed. Lidl's share of traffic fell below 8 percent in August, inMarket revealed.
Heather Haddon, "Lidl Stores Gain Little Traction So Far in U.S.", The Wall Street journal, October 08, 2017, © Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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Costco Introduces Online Shopping Services

October 6, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Membership-only warehouse club Costco Wholesale introduced two online shopping services, as part of efforts to expand its online retail presence. Available at present at 376 stores in the US, Costco's partnership with Instacart will be expanded to include more locations across the country. Launched on October 1, 2017, the company's CostcoGrocery online shopping service include about 500 nonperishable dry grocery products delivered free to Costco customers who make orders worth at least $75.
Jon Springer, "Costco Launches Online Grocery Offering", Supermarket News, October 06, 2017, © Penton
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Amazon Seeks To Expand Own Delivery Capabilities

October 5, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Online retailer Amazon.com Inc. is expanding its in-house delivery capabilities in order to increase the number of products available for free two-day delivery and decrease warehouse overcrowding. Dubbed by the company as Seller Flex, the proposed service first began in India. Amazon began testing the service in West Coast states in 2017 and plans to launch the service across the country in 2018.
Spencer Soper, "Amazon Is Testing Its Own Delivery Service to Rival FedEx and UPS", Bloomberg, October 05, 2017, © Bloomberg LP
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'Supermarket' Startup Seeks To Go Storeless

October 5, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Farmstead believes it can reinvent the supermarket model by eliminating its physical structure altogether. The San Francisco based startup has a series of micro-warehouses stocked with a range of local farm produce and grocery products and uses AI to predict a customer’s future needs based on their initial order. The selection is then delivered to the customer. Farmstead claims to have made over 15,000 deliveries in the Bay Area and has raised $2.8 million from venture funds. [Image Credit: © Farmstead] 
Dan Orlando, "Startup Believes it Can ‘Reinvent’ Supermarket Model", Supermarket News, October 05, 2017, © Penton
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Upcoming GDPR Legislation Set To Have Global Impact

October 5, 2017: 12:00 AM EST

New General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) are due to arrive in May 2018. GDPR will create a standardized data privacy law for EU members. It will also affect companies and individuals selling goods or services to EU citizens. The legislation will give individuals more rights to their data, including the “right to be forgotten” and asking consent for data processing. Potential fines for not adhering to the regulations can be up to $24m, or 4% of a company’s annual turnover. A recent PwC survey revealed that GDPR is a top data priority for more than 50 percent of US multinationals.[Image Credit: ©  EDPS] 

Ronan Shields et al., "What Does the EU’s Privacy Reform Mean for US Marketers? And what Should You Do Now?", The Drum, October 05, 2017, © Carnyx Group Ltd
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Walgreens Boots Alliance Launches YourGoodSkin Line Of Skincare Products

October 4, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Walgreens Boots Alliance has launched the YourGoodSkin line of skincare products exclusively at Walgreens stores in the US and Boots branches in the UK and Ireland. Developed in partnership with scientists, dermatologists, and thousands of women, YourGoodSkin products are designed to “help transform skin” and give consumers “good skin for life.” Featuring the Balancing Skin Concentrate ingredient, YourGoodSkin products can give 90 percent of women skin with improved texture; 71 percent, more even skin tone; and 80 percent, more radiant skin, according to test results.
"Walgreens Boots Alliance Launches YourGoodSkin™, First Skincare Range in over 20 Years Which Includes Hero Product ‘Balancing Skin Concentrate,’ Clinically Proven to Improve the Five Key Signs of Visibly Healthy Skin", Business Wire, October 04, 2017, © Business Wire, Inc.
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Amazon Talks Logistics Collaboration With French Retailer Leclerc

October 4, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Online retailer Amazon has discussed possible logistics partnerships with Leclerc, according to the French retailer's chief executive Michel-Edouard Leclerc. French newspaper Le Monde earlier reported that Amazon has approached local supermarket companies regarding the possibility of establishing distribution deals or acquiring retail company in the country.
Pascale Denis, "French retailer Leclerc approached by Amazon over logistics partnership", Reuters, October 04, 2017, © Reuters
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Wal-Mart Buys NYC-based Last-Mile Delivery Service Parcel

October 3, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Wal-Mart said it has acquired Parcel, a technology-enabled, last-mile delivery service company specializing in perishable and non-perishable products in New York City. Operating 24/7, Parcel relies on technology, a fleet of leased vehicles, and employee-based workforce to rapidly sort, load, and deliver products to customers. Wal-Mart said it plans to use Parcel to deliver packages to customers in New York City.
"Walmart Announces the Acquisition of Parcel, a Technology-Based, Same-Day and Last-Mile Delivery Company", Walmart, October 03, 2017, © Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
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Lotte Affiliates Announce New Holding Company

October 1, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
In response to challenging retail conditions in Korea and abroad, especially in China, Lotte has announced the launch of a new holding company, Lotte Corporation. Four Lotte affiliates, Lotte Shopping, Lotte Confectionery, Lotte Chilsung Beverage and Lotte Food will merge their investment entities into the new holding company. Lotte Group Chairman Shin Dong-bin and Hwang Kag-gyu, head of the corporate innovation office, will lead the new company. Lotte says the change will make its governance structure more transparent and efficient, while analysts point out that the move will strengthen Shin's control over the company, especially if a rumored merger with Hotel Lotte takes place.
Won Ho-jung, "Lotte begins new governance under holding company", The Korea Herald, October 01, 2017, © The Korea Herald
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Whole Foods Says Customer Card Payment Information Hacked By Cyberthieves

September 29, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Retailer Whole Foods has warned customers that hackers gained access to payment card information at several stores. Acquired by online retailer Amazon for $13.7 billion in June 2017, Whole Foods said the cyberattack affected the company's taprooms and restaurants and not the main checkout lines of its stores. Whole Foods operates 449 stores in the US, with more than 40 branches selling beer on tap.
Alfred Ng, "Whole Foods hit by credit card hack at several stores", CNET, September 29, 2017, © CBS Interactive, Inc
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Natura Names Boynton CEO Of The Body Shop

September 29, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Natura Group has named David Boynton as chief executive of beauty retailer The Body Shop. Boynton's appointment coincides with Natura Group's implementation of a new governance and management structure following its acquisition of TBS in September 2017. At present, Boynton is chief executive of men's wear retailer Charles Tyrwhitt. He started his career in the grocery market and later moved to health and beauty retailer AS Watson.
Elias Jahshan, "The Body Shop’s new owner snaps up Charles Tyrwhitt’s David Boynton as new CEO", Retail Gazette, September 29, 2017, © Retail Gazette
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Wal-Mart Aims For High-End Market With Jet.com

September 28, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is repositioning its Jet ecommerce unit toward the high-end market, as part of the retailer's efforts to compete with online rival Amazon. Acquired by Wal-Mart for $3.3 billion in 2016, Jet plans to sell apparel from online retailers bought by the retail giant in the previous year. Also, Jet plans to introduce a new line of private-label food and grocery items.
Sarah Nassauer, "Wal-Mart Tries to Take Jet.com Upscale", The Wall Street Journal, September 28, 2017, © Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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China's FMCG Market Grows 4.6 Percent In August 2017 Quarter

September 28, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
In China, sales of fast-moving consumer goods grew 4.6 percent during the 12-week period ending August 11, 2017, compared with the same period of the previous year, according to Kantar Worldpanel. Data from the market research firm revealed lower-tier cities saw faster growth at 4.9 percent compared with 4.1 percent for leading cities and provincial capitals.
"Further recovery for China's FMCG market", Kantar Worldpanel, September 28, 2017, © Kantar Worldpanel
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Wal-Mart Expands Sustainability Chemistry Policy, Demands Safer Products From Suppliers

September 27, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
Wal-Mart said it has expanded its sustainability chemistry policy for consumable products, as part of the retailer's efforts to improve transparency, promote better product formulations, and widen its selection of sustainable products. First launched in 2013, the program covers about 90,000 products from 700 suppliers. As part of the commitment, Wal-Mart expects its suppliers to completely disclose chemicals used as ingredients in their products, ensure their products come with safe ingredients, and integrate sustainability into their product manufacturing.
"Walmart Strengthens Sustainable Chemistry Commitment, Reports Progress in Safer Product Formulation", Wal-Mart, September 27, 2017, © Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
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Discount Retailers Aldi And Lidl Have US Retailers Against The Ropes

September 27, 2017: 12:00 AM EST
German discount retailers Lidl and Aldi are expected to grow faster than their local competitors in the US market. By offering limited variety of products at very low prices, Lidl and Aldi are winning a price war and expanding their shares of the retail market. Operating in the US since the 1970s, Aldi has 1,700 stores across the country, while Lidl began its expansion in the East Coast in June, and opened its 30th store in September 2017. Also, by offering private-brand products, the German retailers can offer discounts ranging from 35 percent to 40 percent, compared with their rivals.
Alina Selyukh, "Discount Grocers Aldi And Lidl Give U.S. Stores A Run For Their Money", National Public Radio, September 27, 2017, © npr
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