Coronavirus (COVID-19):
latest news from around the world


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20 April 2020
Having achieved its goal of recruiting 150,000 associates, the retailer plans to grow its numbers by a further 50,000 as it looks to deal with the effects of the demand created by the pandemic. Providing more flexibility for current associates Walmart had initially committed to recruiting 150,000 associates by the end of May. However, having achieved this goal six weeks early it has laid ou...
20 April 2020
We look at the actions some of the major retailers in the US have undertaken in response to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic in four key areas; stores, supply chain, associate care and community support. Common actions Reducing operating hours to enable restocking and store cleaning, along with introduction of dedicated shopping periods for vulnerable shoppers Introduction of measures to...
20 April 2020
We detail the latest initiatives from Canada’s leading food retailers in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. Loblaw Food stores : it has reduced store hours and limited the number of customers in its busiest stores. The retailer is also moving some service departments, such as seafood, to offer pre-packed products only. It has also stated that it will not change its actions or prices to ...
17 April 2020
India's FMCG businesses are partnering with the government to help up to 1m Kirana stores deliver safer shopping environments in the face of the Coronavirus pandemic. Ensuring minimum hygene and safety standards across Kirana stores As part of plans by the Union consumer affairs ministry, 12 FMCG companies including Nestle India, Britannia Industries, Marico, J&J, Dabur India, Tata Consumer...
17 April 2020
It is currently hard to know how long coronavirus will be impacting day to day business and shopping behaviour. When looking to plan trade promotions in the medium term we need to consider the volatility and unpredictability of the current climate. Three questions you should be asking are: 1. Why do you want to promote? With many categories and brands seeing record levels of sales during...
17 April 2020
Colombia becomes the third country in Latin America to implement gender restrictions during the lockdown, after  Peru and Panama. ‘Peak and gender’ lockdown As of 13 April, the country’s capital city, Bogotá, has imposed a ‘peak and gender’ rule. The measure ordered by Bogotá’s mayor, Claudia López, enables men to leave the house on calendar days that are odd numbers, and women to leav...
17 April 2020
On 23 March, we reported that all the UK’s largest food-to-go operators had closed their doors after the government announced restrictions to prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and measures to support businesses during this time. Nearly four weeks later, the news that three of the UK’s most popular chains were re-opening selected stores will have delighted many of their fans (a...
17 April 2020
Walmex (Walmart Mexico) has introduced a new pricing initiative called “Los Esenciales” (The Essentials), which sees 125 essential items sold at their lowest possible prices in order to support the Mexican population during the COVID—19 pandemic. This promotion will feature in all Walmex’s Bodega Aurrera discount banners, which account for more than 2,000 stores across the country. Items will ...
16 April 2020
Waitrose has unveiled a range of measures to help it support its most vulnerable suppliers during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. £200,000 from the Waitrose Foundation Global Fund Some of the measures put in place include a £200,000 purse from the Waitrose Foundation Global fund, which will support its overseas farming communities. The purse is due to be used to convey advice on social...
16 April 2020
We look at what Iceland Foods is doing to meet the evolving challenges of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Increasing home delivery capacity Iceland will be increasing its online capacity 250% according to The Grocer; The retailer will be adding its The Food Warehouse branches to its online service Iceland began adding the larger banner’s stores to its online service last year,...
16 April 2020
Whole Foods Market has closed one of its key New York stores to enable it to fulfil Prime grocery deliveries. Developed to meet needs of city workers and tourists The Bryant Park store , located in central Manhattan, is one of the retailer’s busiest in the city, alongside neighbouring stores at Columbus Circle and Union Square. Opening in late 2016, the store was one of the first to in...
16 April 2020
Aldi UK is launching an online delivery service to help vulnerable shoppers. Essentials food parcels The new service will be launched on Friday 17th April. Aldi will be offering food parcels that cost £24.99 (US$31.34), including delivery. They will be limited to one per shopper. The parcels will contain 22 essential products including tea, pasta and antibacterial handwash. The majority ...
16 April 2020
The latest release from the British Retail Consortium Retail Sales Monitor (BRC-RSM), shows that UK retail sales fell by 4.3% in March, the largest monthly drop in the history of the measure. While sales in supermarkets saw an exceptional peak in the month, large elements of non-food sales fell away sharply, even before the general shutdown announced on 23 March. Then thereafter many non-food sec...
16 April 2020
Amazon is set to temporarily suspend all non-essential deliveries in the country, as reported by Reuters. Closure of six warehouses The retailer will close its six warehouses in France until at least 20 April, following a court order to limit deliveries to essential products, including food and medical supplies. According to the report, Amazon will use a state partial-unemployment scheme...
16 April 2020
Beauty-products retailer, Sa Sa International, has posted its Q4 results. Group turnover fell 56.5% to HKD892.4m (US$115.1m). Multiples factors impacting turnover The significant decline in Group turnover was partly due to the closure of Sa Sa’s Singapore business. Sales to mainlanders in Hong Kong and Macau fell 80.8%, as consumer sentiment and travel restrictions following Coronavirus (CO...
16 April 2020
Coundown has launched its first darkstore in Auckland, helping the retailer meet the growing demand for ecommerce in the country's largest city. New centre will meet rapidly growing demand Even before the Coronavirus (COVID-19) surge in demand for online grocery deliveries, New Zealand was experiencing some rapid growth in the online channel. The new 8,800 sq m darkstore in Penrose will hel...
16 April 2020
The German Trade Association has laid out a plan for a gradual return to normality, as the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues. 1. Non-discriminatory guidelines The majority of shops remain closed across Germany but as this is reversed in the future, clear and consistent regulations are necessary to avoid legal uncertainty, unfair competition or collective uncertainty. Decisions shoul...
16 April 2020
We bring you the latest news on how retailers and suppliers are coping with the challenges of COVID-19 in Germany. We will continue to update this article with the latest initiatives. Ten-point plan for retail The German Trade Association has laid out a plan for a gradual return to normality. It includes measures to support small businesses, stimulate consumer spending, adjust labour l...
16 April 2020
US retail sales fell 8.7% in March, compared to a month earlier. We look at how this breaks down across different sectors and the outlook going forward. Non-food sales see significant drop Given the mandated stay-at-home measures and voluntary closures by most retailers, due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, the decline in sales was expected. Year-on-year, retail sales fell 6.2%. A se...
15 April 2020
With the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic requiring shoppers globally to remain at home, retailers exhausting online order capacity, and rationalising ranges, now is the time for businesses to use online to sell directly to consumers (D2C). Demand is so high for online ordering and home delivery, that the cost to acquire and retain shoppers, a key barrier to launching a D2C operation, is current...