This week’s top retail stories - November 5th 2010
Best Buy UK posts £29m loss
Losses are rising at the fledgling Best BUY UK business even though shoppers like the new electrical retailer. Launched by Carphone Warehouse, Best Buy expects to lose between £50m and £55m this financial year, as opposed to £40m to £45m as planned. However Carphone Warehouse CEO, Roger Taylor, said “Customer response to our first Best Buy branded big-box stores has been overwhelmingly positive and with yesterday’s launch of the transactional website, Best Buy is now truly able to compete as a multichannel retailer”.
Apple Director joins Kingfisher board
Kingfisher has appointed a member of Apple’s senior team to join its Board in a non-exec capacity. Pascal Cagni, Apple’s VP and General Manager for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, will assist B&Q in the development of its digital business operations. Ian Cheshire, Kingfisher Group CEO is particularly excited about the impact Pascal’s background will have on the group’s multichannel strategy.
M&S on track to hit £500m online sales over Christmas
Marks and Spencer is poised to beat its online sales target of £500m 3 months ahead of schedule, helped by their Shop Your Way initiative in particular. Marc Bolland, M&S’ new CEO, w2ill continue to push the retailer’s multichannel strategy next week when he will announce further details on the plans. Bolland is also expected to reveal more of his thinking on M&S’s core offering, including the number of fashion brands that it has and international opportunities. Marks & Spencer has performed well throughout this year, helped by improvements to its food business, fashion appeal and ‘good, better, best’ price architecture.
Waitrose / Boots partnership off to encouraging start
Alliance Boots has hailed an “encouraging” start to its fledgling combination with Waitrose in its latest half-yearly results. The high street chemist now sells Waitrose food in 19 of its stores, including seven selling an extended range featuring Essential Waitrose products. And Waitrose sells Boots’ health and beauty products in a dozen of its supermarkets. Boots said health and beauty sales were up 1.8% on a like-for-like basis for the six months to 30 September. That contributed to an overall improvement in turnover for the period of 6%.
Dragons’ reject says exports will double pre-filled glass sales
Dragons’ Den reject James Nash is putting “two fingers up” to Duncan Bannatyne, Peter Jones and co, claiming new export markets will help double sales of his pre-filled wine glasses next year. The innovative on-the-go wine format, called The Tulip, was unanimously dismissed by the TV panel last year, but sales are expected to increase from £1.5m to £3.5m by the end of 2011 as it expands across the globe.
Just 9% of food waste goes to landfill
Food manufacturers have been congratulated for their continued success and progress in cutting waste. More than 90% ofthe food and packaging waste that was generated by factories operated by the Food & Drink Federation is now recycled or recovered according to new Defra figures. The FDF has suggested that companies were on track to hit the zero food and packaging waste to landfill by 2015.
Kraft says investment in brands boosted sales
Kraft says its “solid performance” in the third quarter was boosted by its strategy to “significantly step up” its investment into building its brands. The food manufacturer reported a 26% increase in sales to $11.9bn (£7.5bn) in the three months to 30 September “impacted favourably” by the Cadbury acquisition. Rene Rosenfeld, Kraft chairman and CEO, says: “The Cadbury integration has proceeded smoothly and quickly, and we’re already benefiting from significant cost synergies”.
Unilever says customer focus boosts sales
Unilever says increased investment in brands such as Dove, Knorr and Lipton helped push sales up 13.2% in the third quarter. Unilever is looking to increase volume and margins by investing in marketing. The FMCG company says turnover totalled €11.5bn (£10.1bn) in the three months to 30 September, up from €10.2bn (£8.9bn) a year earlier. Paul Polman, Unilever’s chief executive, says that the third quarter results show that its “strategy to focus on the consumer and to accelerate growth is working”.
Nestlé unveils Christmas ads featuring Clooney and Malkovich
Nestlé-owned Nespresso will air its George Clooney and John Malkovich TV ad for the first time in the UK as part of its worldwide Christmas ad campaign. Nespresso says it has invested “more than ever” in the new above-the-line campaign, which will appear across TV, video-on-demand, digital, national print and outdoor advertising space. The creative is designed to build brand awareness and drive education of its “quality coffee” throughout the final quarter of 2010.