European Retail Correspondent
Mark's Feed
Nov 24, 2011

Dutch Jumbo deal poses threat to Ahold

AMSTERDAM/LONDON, Nov 24 (Reuters) – Dutch grocer
Jumbo is to buy rival C1000 from CVC to become the
clear number two in the sector and step up competition to
Ahold’s market-leading Albert Heijn chain.

Jumbo is to pay 900 million euros, including debt, for C1000
to create a supermarket chain with a 23 percent market share,
nipping at the heels of Albert Heijn which has one third of the
high-margin Dutch market, and is likely to set off a supermarket
price war.

Nov 24, 2011

Dixons loss widens in market faring worse

LONDON, Nov 24 (Reuters) – Dixons, Europe’s
No.2 electrical goods retailer, posted a wider first-half loss
as cash-strapped shoppers cut back on purchases of discretionary
goods, but said it was taking market share from rivals faring
even worse.

The group, home to the Currys and PC World chains in
Britain, said on Thursday it made a loss before tax and one-off
items of 25.3 million pounds ($39 million) in the 24 weeks to
Oct. 15.

Nov 22, 2011

Europeans plan Christmas without the trimmings

LONDON (Reuters) – When Santa Claus visits crisis-hit Europe this Christmas, his sack may not be quite so bulging with presents.

Rising prices, muted wages growth and swingeing austerity measures have squeezed disposable incomes across the region. And fears a debt crisis could blow the euro apart and bring down banks have dashed hopes of an improvement any time soon.

Nov 22, 2011

Analysis: Europeans plan Christmas without the trimmings

LONDON (Reuters) – When Santa Claus visits crisis-hit Europe this Christmas, his sack may not be quite so bulging with presents.

Rising prices, muted wages growth and swingeing austerity measures have squeezed disposable incomes across the region. And fears a debt crisis could blow the euro apart and bring down banks have dashed hopes of an improvement any time soon.

Nov 21, 2011

Ahold says there’s growth in mature markets

LONDON, Nov 21 (Reuters) – Dutch grocer Ahold
plans to step up its expansion in online shopping,
convenience stores and neighbouring countries, as well as cut
costs and hike its dividend, as it seeks to persuade investors
it can thrive in mature markets.

The group, which runs Dutch market leader Albert Heijn and
makes about 60 percent of sales in the United States, said ahead
of presentations to investors on Monday it would also launch
initiatives aimed at boosting customer loyalty and try to sell
more higher margin own-brand goods.

Nov 17, 2011

Higher food prices help Ahold top Q3 forecasts

LONDON (Reuters) – Dutch grocer Ahold (AHLN.AS: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) beat forecasts with a 5 percent rise in third-quarter profit as it gained market share and managed to pass on higher food costs to cash-strapped shoppers, particularly in its main U.S. market.

Chief executive Dick Boer said on Thursday that was largely because competitors had also increased their prices, and did not reflect a stronger consumer.

Nov 15, 2011

Asda sales rise as price pledge pays off

LONDON, Nov 15 (Reuters) – Asda, the British arm of
U.S. retailer Wal-Mart Stores, reported a pick up in
third-quarter sales growth, helped, it said, by revamped
own-brand food ranges and a pledge to be cheaper than rivals.

Sales at stores open more than a year rose 1.3 percent,
excluding fuel and VAT sales tax, in the three months to
September, Britain’s second-biggest supermarket group behind
Tesco said on Tuesday.

Nov 15, 2011

Burberry bets on top cities to weather downturn

LONDON (Reuters) – Luxury goods group Burberry is to stick with ambitious expansion plans, saying demand in top cities like Hong Kong, London and New York would prove resilient in any downturn.

Chief executive Angela Ahrendts said on Tuesday the 155-year-old maker of raincoats and leather goods made 60 percent of retail revenue in 25 cities that are home to the world’s wealthiest individuals and attract high numbers of tourists.

Nov 11, 2011

Asda says global sourcing underpins price promise

LEEDS, England, Nov 11 (Reuters) – A drive to buy
produce directly from farmers and manufacturers, and in tandem
with U.S. parent Wal-Mart, will underpin the competitive
position of British grocer Asda as major rival Tesco
cuts prices, it said on Friday.

Finance director Rob McWilliam said IPL, an Asda subsidiary
focused on sourcing goods more efficiently, had grown to provide
around 1 billion pounds ($1.6 billion) worth of goods for the
chain from around 260 million just two years ago, and was set to
continue expanding rapidly.

Nov 10, 2011

Morrisons Q3 sales at top end of forecasts

LONDON, Nov 10 (Reuters) – A focus on low prices, promotions
and fresh foods helped Wm Morrison Supermarkets to defy
the gloom surrounding Britain’s retailers and post third-quarter
sales growth ahead of its main rivals.

Chief executive Dalton Philips said on Thursday there was no
sign of a let up in the pressure on British shoppers, who are
seeing disposable incomes squeezed by rising prices, muted wages
growth and government austerity measures.

    • About Mark

      "Based in London, UK. Responsible for ThomsonReuters coverage of European retail companies. Previously worked as Chief Correspondent of UK Equities and before that as reporter on the UK company news desk."
    • Follow Mark