North America news & analysis

18 January 2021
The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the development and evolution of retailers across the world. For the discount channel, one of the biggest changes in 2020 has been the acceleration of developing online services, to catch up with other non-discounter competitors and meet shoppers’ expectations. With profitability being at the heart of the discount model and a key measure of success, the ...
18 January 2021
Having entered in preliminary discussions around a potential transaction, these have now ended, with Carrefour and Couche-Tard switching their focus to explore opportunities for operational partnerships. Opposition to any deal The discussions had been initiated by Couche-Tard’s “friendly approach” to Carrefour with the objective of acquiring the France-based retailer. However, these d...
15 January 2021
Marc Lore, president and CEO, Walmart US ecommerce, is leaving the business at the end of January. He will remain as a strategic advisor to the retailer until the end of September. Transformed Walmart’s ecommerce operations Lore joined Walmart in 2016 as part of the acquisition of Jet.com, the ecommerce business he founded. In addition to being able to optimise the capabilities of Jet.com, ...
15 January 2021
Couche-Tard, which operates the Circle K brand globally, has launched a live retail lab store in Montreal featuring an autonomous shopping experience, in partnership with McGill University. Autonomous store experience The lab store has been launched to enable the testing of innovative and frictionless technologies in a live environment. Located on McGill University’s downtown campus in the ...
14 January 2021
Canada's Couche-Tard, which operates the Circle K chain of convenience stores globally, has submitted a non-binding offer letter to Carrefour for a "friendly combination" at a price of EURO 20 per share, in a US$20bn deal. The terms of the transaction are under discussion, but there can be no certainty at this stage that these discussions will result in any agreement or transaction. Retail’s d...
14 January 2021
We look at Target’s performance in November and December and the impact of its digital operations on sales growth. Holiday sales key numbers Comparable sales in November and December increased 17.2% Traffic increased 4.3%, with average ticket up 12.3% Store comparable store sales increased 4.2% Digital comparable sales increased 102% Traffic and basket size up Target fin...
13 January 2021
During 2020, food-to-go retailers and specialists alike had to rethink every element of their food-to-go offering to adapt to the changes in consumer behaviour brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. This has led to a period of intense innovation as businesses seek to develop propositions that can survive the short-term unpredictability of changing restrictions and win in the long term as th...
12 January 2021
We review Albertsons’ third quarter performance and the progress it’s making against its four strategic priorities. Q3 key numbers Sales and other revenue up 9.3% to $15.4bn Identical store sales increased 12.3% Digital sales growth of 225% Operating income up 25.1% to $258.5m Gaining millions of new households The pandemic continues to drive elevated demand across the r...
12 January 2021
Walmart is partnering with HomeValet to pilot online grocery deliveries directly into smart boxes located outside customers’ homes. Temperature controlled, IoT enabled Starting this spring, customers in Bentonville, Arkansas, will be able to receive deliveries from their local Walmart directly into a temperature-controlled smart box. This features an IoT (Internet of Things) enabled platfor...
12 January 2021
Amazon has discontinued its Pantry delivery service in the US and India, as it looks to offer a clearer, simpler grocery proposition to customers. Launched in 2014 Amazon Prime Pantry launched in the US in 2014, enabling Prime members to order products including non-perishable food, alcohol, personal care and household items for delivery. The aim of the service was to allow shoppers to stoc...