Robust comparable-sales gains for Walmart's U.S. businesses in Q3

Afresh Technologies is partnering with The Save Mart Companies

US: Buehler’s promotes Michael Davidson to CEO
Come next year, a new chief executive officer will be at the helm for Ohio grocer Buehler’s Fresh Foods. Michael Davidson, executive vice president of sales and marketing, has been promoted to president and CEO and start in the new post on January 2, Wooster, Ohio-based Buehler’s said. He will take the CEO reins from Dan Shanahan, who announced earlier this month that he planned to retire effective December 31.

US: GrubMarket raises $200mln Series E to accelerate profitable growth and IPO readiness
GrubMarket, a San Francisco-based food technology company with a mission to digitally transform the American food supply chain industry, announced that it has raised $200mln in a massively oversubscribed Series E funding round from Tiger Global Management, funds and accounts managed by BlackRock, Liberty Street Funds, Apeira Capital, Japan Post Capital, Celtic House Asia Partners, We Capital and Walleye Capital, among other unnamed participants. This round values GrubMarket at over $1.2bln.

Strong U.S. sales give Walmart 3rd-quarter boost
On top of elevated results a year ago, Walmart recorded robust comparable-sales gains for its U.S. businesses in the fiscal 2022 3rd quarter, with over 9% growth at Walmart U.S. and a double-digit increase at Sam’s Club. For the quarter ended October 31, Walmart totaled revenue of $140.52bln, up 4.3% from $134.71bln a year earlier. Excluding the impact of foreign exchange, revenue rose 3.3% to $139.2bln, the Bentonville, Arkansas-based retail giant said. The gain built on 5.2% revenue growth (6.1% in constant currency) in the fiscal 2021 quarter.

US: Afresh Technologies partners with The Save Mart Companies to ensure freshest produce for shoppers
Afresh Technologies, an AI-driven technology company building solutions transforming the fresh food supply chain, announced that it is partnering with The Save Mart Companies, California's largest family owned grocer, on an upcoming pilot program. The Save Mart Companies will bring Afresh's Fresh Operating System into select Save Mart, Lucky California and FoodMaxx stores throughout California.

US: Lidl releases pricing for Thanksgiving basket; shoppers can buy traditional holiday meal for less than $30
Ahead of the holiday season, Lidl has released pricing for a traditional Thanksgiving basket allowing shoppers to assemble a holiday meal for less than $30. The basket includes: Frozen Turkey (13 lbs.); Pumpkin Pie Mix; Milk, 1 gallon whole; Carrots; Celery; Hawaiian Sweet Rolls; Green Beans; Pie Shells; Fresh Cranberries; Whipping Cream; Bagged Stuffing; Sweet Potatoes.

US: Buyk hires Nathan’s Famous executive James Walker as new CEO
Buyk, the leading real-time retail service promising ultrafast grocery delivery, announces the hire of James Walker, former Senior Vice President for Restaurants at Nathan’s Famous, as the Company’s new CEO. The move represents a major step for Buyk, which launched its operations in New York City in early September, as the Company sets its sights on a rapid roll-out to several US metropolises.

SPAR Group says Irish, Swiss businesses performing strongly, but Poland lags
South Africa's SPAR Group has said that its Ireland and Switzerland-based operations delivered 'strong performances' in the year to 30 September, however its Polish operation has 'failed to deliver the expected financial improvement'. In its group results for the year, SPAR Group said that turnover increased by 2.9% to R127.9bln (€7.31bln), equating to a 3.9% increase at constant currency levels.

Lidl GB to become UK's highest paying supermarket with biggest ever investment into wages
Lidl GB has announced plans for its biggest ever investment into colleague wages, making it the highest paying supermarket in the UK. The commitment of £18mln will see entry-level pay rise from £9.50 to £10.10 per hour outside of London and £10.85 to £11.35 within the M25, with colleagues earning up to £11.40 and £12.25 respectively, depending on length of service. It also represents a pay rise of over 6% for some employees and will directly benefit over 21,000 Lidl colleagues across the country, which equates to over 80% of its workforce.

UK: McColl's shares fall by a 3rd as retailer warns on product availability
McColl's, the convenience store chain, has seen its shares plunge by up to a 3rd to hit record lows after it warned that weak product availability would hit annual profits. The company, which has a network of 1,265 convenience stores and news agents across Britain, said a shortage of lorry drivers and an insufficient supply of key products intensified in the final quarter of its financial year.

UK: Tesco taps RangeMe product sourcing platform
Tesco is leveraging a platform from RangeMe to “help its buyers scale product sourcing efforts with streamlined submissions and simplified discovery tools”. It says that British suppliers will now have “a direct and unified journey to present their products to Tesco buyers”. RangeMe first launched in 2014 and is now used by over 12,000 retail buyers in the UK, Benelux region, North America, and Asia Pacific.

South Africa: Union to start indefinite strike at Game, Makro ahead of Black Friday
Workers will start an indefinite strike on Friday at all group companies owned by Walmart-led Massmart Holdings in South Africa, their union said, creating another problem at the retailer struggling to turnaround. The South African Commercial Catering and Allied Workers Union (SACCAWU), an affiliate of the powerful union COSATU aligned with the governing African National Congress, said it will commence the strike from November 19 at all Massmart companies.

ESD Italia to open 160 new stores in 2022
The members of Italy’s largest retail purchasing alliance ESD Italia are planning to invest €600mln in 2022. These resources will be targeted towards the opening of 160 new outlets and the modernisation of 150 existing stores. The plans were announced at an event organised in Milan to celebrate the 1st 20 years of the alliance. Founded in 2001, ESD Italia consists of several big names in the Italian distribution and retail sector, including Acqua & Sapone, Agorà Network, Aspiag Service, Selex Gruppo Commerciale, and SUN.

Attention Australia's Gold Coast: Harris Farm Markets to open this Thursday November 18
It’s the date the Gold Coast has been waiting for - when the family-owned and operated Harris Farm Markets will throw open their flavour-filled doors to their 1st Gold Coast store. And that date is this Thursday 18th November. That’s when the famed local fruit, veg and grocery market will officially welcome shoppers to their store at Via Roma on the Isle of Capri. Shoppers can expect more than 500 fruit & veg lines including organics. Some local fruit and veg favourites are Little Acre, gourmet mushroom supplier from Brisbane, strawbs from the Sunshine Coast & Caboolture, Toowoomba avos (in season now!) as well as crisp lettuces and celery from Redland.

UK: Sainsbury’s joins the smart set with checkout-free trial in London
Sainsbury’s has teamed up with Amazon to test a “just walk out” store, where it is possible to buy groceries without having to scan items or visit a till. The store, which is currently only open to Sainsbury’s staff, is in Holborn in central London, just yards from equivalent outlets operated separately by Tesco and Amazon. It is expected to open on 29 November.

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