Sweden: ICA sees sales decline of 1.7% in April
Swedish retailer ICA Gruppen has reported a sales decline of 1.7% in April 2021 compared with the corresponding month last year. Sales in like-for-like stores decreased by 2.0% year-on-year, the retailer added. In April 2021, total sales in ICA stores amounted to SEK10.8bln (€1.07bln), excluding VAT. Sales in all formats, including Maxi ICA Stormarknad, ICA Kvantum, ICA Supermarket and ICA Nära declined in comparison with 2020’s figures.
Fresh takes centre stage in SPAR Belgium partner’s latest store concept
SPAR Belgium Retail Partners Colruyt Group has continued the roll-out of its latest store concept with 2 new supermarkets in Herseaux and Léglise. These latest-generation SPAR stores feature a modern layout, state-of-the-art instore technologies, and a strong focus on fresh and sustainability. Both stores are run by dedicated SPAR retailers, who are already closely connected with the brand and deeply rooted in their local communities.
Chinese grocery app Dingdong Maicai raises $330mln in funding
Reuters reported: “Chinese grocery app Dingdong Maicai has raised $330mln, advisor Cygnus Equity said, amid a surge of fundraising in the sector. The so-called D-plus round of fundraising led by the SoftBank Vision Fund followed the vegetable e-commerce platform’s $700mln D round completed last month, bringing its total recent fundraising to over $1bln”.
Holland: Ahold Delhaize boosted by online as first quarter sales rise
Dutch supermarket giant Ahold Delhaize has reported better than expected first-quarter sales, with the Albert Heijn and Food Lion owner seeing a boost from its online channels. The group said that it planned to increase its 2021 online sales outlook, after its 4.6% first-quarter operating margin beating a market forecast of 4.3%. Net sales rose 5.8% at constant exchange rates to €18.3bln, with online sales surging by 103%. Forecasts compiled by the company had predicted group sales of €17.4bln.
Apps that promise grocery deliveries in 10 minutes are invading Europe as shopping shifts online
A new crop of start-ups in Europe are offering to deliver people’s groceries in just 10 minutes, fueled by venture capitalists and an acceleration of online commerce during the coronavirus pandemic. Turkey’s Getir, Germany’s Gorillas and Britain’s Dija are just a few of the apps promising users 10-minute grocery deliveries. It’s an increasingly crowded market with many new entrants attempting to gain a strong foothold in local markets. “The acceleration in the grocery space has been huge and went together with what has been happening in the pandemic”, Alberto Menolascina, co-founder and CEO of Dija, told CNBC in an interview.
Holland: Hema tackles Covid losses with new management
Last year, Hema suffered a loss of 214.8mln euros, while turnover also decreased. The main villain: the coronavirus. However, the takeover saga also proved to be an issue. A new management team is now ready to take the lead.
Israel: Stor.ai partners with Trax to add on-demand picking to one-stop e-commerce solution for grocers
Stor.ai, (fka Self Point) the end-to-end digital commerce solution for grocers, announced a new partnership with Trax, a leading computer vision company transforming brick-and-mortar retail. Through the partnership, stor.ai and Trax will equip North American grocery retailers with a one-stop, holistic solution for processing, fulfilling, and delivering online orders. Combining stor.ai’s Picking App and Trax’s on-demand crowd marketplace will enable retailers to respond to online order surges efficiently and cost-effectively.
Amazon issues $1bln sustainability bond
Amazon is backing up its environmental initiatives with a new $1bln bond focused on funding projects in 5 key sustainability areas. The e-tail giant will use proceeds from the bond to build on investments it has made over the years in renewable energy, clean transportation, sustainable buildings, affordable housing, and socioeconomic advancement & empowerment. The bond will enable investors to join Amazon in its social and environmental efforts.
US: More Philadelphia stores on the way from The Giant Company
Following the recent opening of a new flagship store, The Giant Company has unveiled plans to add 4 more locations in Philadelphia, which would raise its total to 10 stores in the city. Carlisle, Pennsylvania-based Giant said that new Philadelphia stores in the works include a 32,000-square-foot Giant Heirloom Market specialty grocery store at 801 Market St. in the city’s Fashion District plus 3 Giant supermarkets: a 46,000-square-foot store on Columbus Boulevard at the corner of Reed Street, a 50,000-square-foot store on North Broad Street at the corner of Spring Garden Street, and a 40,000-square-foot store on South Broad Street at the corner of Washington Avenue.
US: Blue Apron partners with Disney, adds menu items to drive continued growth with ‘high-quality’ customers
Blue Apron Holdings Inc., which has seen its business improve over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, has plans to continue on the growth path with help from a few key partnerships, including one with Walt Disney Inc. The meal kit company has partnered with Disney for the June 18 release of the animated film “Luca” on Disney+. Luca is about one young boy who spends his summer eating his way around the Italian Riviera, according to a description on the Disney website.
Canada: Empire advances FreshCo Expansion
Canadian company Empire Co. Ltd. is continuing to convert conventional stores to FreshCo with the announcement of the next 3 locations for the discount banner in Alberta: Jasper Gates, in Edmonton; Lewis Estates, in Edmonton; and Downtown Fort McMurray. The respective Safeway and Sobeys stores are expected to close in the second quarter of fiscal 2022, and open as FreshCo stores by the end of the 4th quarter of fiscal 2022.