September’s top news stories

9 October 2019 (Last Updated October 11th, 2019 14:58)

Suning acquired 80% stake in Carrefour China for €620m and Forever 21 filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Retail-insight-network.com wraps up key headlines from September 2019.

September’s top news stories
Meijer introduced its Shop & Scan mobile checkout programme to 44 stores in Michigan, US. Credit: Meijer.

Suning acquires 80% stake in Carrefour China for €620m

Suning signed a deal to purchase an 80% stake in French retailer Carrefour’s Chinese operations for €620m ($677.22m).

In June, the Chinese retailer announced the deal that follows its recent acquisitions, including Dia China and Wanda Department Stores. The company noted that it is expanding its brick-and-mortar portfolio for its full-scenario retail model.

Suning Holdings Group chairman Zhang Jindong said: “This is a key step in Suning’s smart retail plan. Carrefour’s FMCG experience and supply chain capabilities can be integrated with Suning’s full-scenario retail model, solid logistics network and advanced technology.


Forever 21 file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection

Fashion retailer Forever 21 and its US subsidiaries filed for Chapter 11 protection in the US bankruptcy court in Delaware.

The retailer’s Canadian arm has also filed and received approval for protection under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Toronto.

Forever 21 is planning to close most of its international businesses in Asia and Europe.


Sainsbury’s to close up to 125 stores across portfolio

British retailer Sainsbury’s announced plans to close up to 125 stores across its portfolio as part of its store estate review.

The closures will include 60 to 70 standalone Argos stores, up to 15 supermarkets and 30 to 40 convenience stores.

The company is also planning to open ten new supermarkets, 80 new Argos store-in-store outlets in Sainsbury’s stores and 110 new Sainsbury’s Locals as part of its growth plans. This move is expected to deliver £120m of incremental profit over the next five years.


Miniso to open first store in British Columbia, Canada

Low-cost retailer Miniso is set to open its first British Columbia store at the Victoria Walmart Supercentre on 5 October this year.

Located at 3460 Saanich Road within the Walmart store, the new location will offer a range of new products for ‘both the price-conscious and affluent customers.’

The store opening continues Miniso’s long-term partnership with the American major retailer.


Hudson’s Bay to close retail operations in the Netherlands

Canadian retailer Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC) is set to close 15 Hudson’s Bay stores, e-commerce site and headquarters in the Netherlands before the end of this year.

The company’s Netherlands retail arm is owned by a retail joint venture between SIGNA Retail Holdings and HBC, which also covers the operations in Germany and Belgium.

According to the company, the store closures will not impact any operations of its business in Canada.


UK CMA raises concerns over JD Sports and Footasylum merger

The UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) raised concerns over the proposed merger of sports fashion retailer JD Sports and fashion chain Footasylum, saying it could be bad for customers.

The CMA said: “A worse deal for customers, both in-store and online, through higher prices, worse choice in stores or reductions in service quality. JD Sports must now address the concerns identified or face a further, more in-depth, investigation.”

Following the Phase I investigation, the CMA said that the merger could remove one of JD Sports’ closest competitors.


JD.com introduces new supply chain innovation initiative

Chinese e-commerce company JD.com introduced a new supply chain innovation initiative as part of the company’s Retail as a Service (RAAS) strategy.

The programme will leverage offline retail outlets to expand the availability of goods to shoppers and enhance the overall efficiency of the supply chain.

According to the company, the new programme will allow offline channels to deliver orders directly by eliminating the need for the product to pass through traditional warehouses, distribution centres and delivery stations to reach the customer.


Co-op expands Click & Collect service trial to over 50 stores

British retailer Co-op and department store chain John Lewis & Partners expanded their Click & Collect service trial to more than 50 Co-op food stores.

This expansion is part of the department store chain’s strategy to enhance customer convenience by investing in its digital capabilities.

The companies entered a partnership agreement to introduce a pilot programme at five Co-op food stores in May this year.


Levi Strauss to acquire 80 retail stores from The Jeans Company

American clothing company Levi Strauss signed an asset purchase agreement with its distributor The Jeans Company (TJC) to acquire all operating assets related to Levi’s and Dockers brands for approximately $35m.

The Jeans Company is the distributor of Levi Strauss products in Chile, Peru, and Bolivia.

The deal covers approximately 80 Levi’s and Dockers retail stores, distribution rights with the multi-brand retailers, as well as the logistical operations.


Meijer launches Shop & Scan mobile checkout programme in Michigan

American supercentre and grocery store chain Meijer expanded the launch Shop & Scan mobile checkout programme to 44 additional stores across southeastern Michigan.

This move is part of the company’s plans to launch the streamlined shopping checkout programme across all stores this year and follows a 15-month initiative to offer the service at all stores across the Midwest.

Shop & Scan allows customers to scan product barcodes while shopping and then scan their phone at a self-checkout machine to pay for the groceries.