What's fresh

Retail Round-Up July 1st 2011

Mamas & Papas aims for 30 more UK stores in five-year expansion

Maternity retailer Mamas & Papas is to focus on expanding domestically and overseas as well as online as part of its a five-year strategy. The 60-store chain, owned by the Scacchetti family, plans to expand to 90 UK stores over the period.The retailer will focus on out-of-town locations in its store grab and will be seeking turnover-related rental deals.

New MD will kick-start Ann Summers rebrand

Ann Summers’ new managing director Vanessa Gold will kick-start a rebrand of the business when she takes the helm at the lingerie and sex toy specialist. Gold - who is sister of Ann Summers chief executive Jacqueline Gold and deputy managing director currently - replaces Paula Minowa who is stepping down from the business. Gold will focus on revamping Ann Summer’s product, packaging and reformatting its stores.

Schuh to step up UK growth following sale

Footwear retailer Schuh is to accelerate expansion in the UK following the sale of the 59-store business to US-based retail group Genesco for £125m last week Schuh will open four new stores as planned in the UK this year - including one in the yet-to-open Westfield Stratford development -but will double openings next year and look to open eight stores.

Heineken drinks to landmark advertising deal with Google

Heineken has signed a groundbreaking advertising agreement with internet giant Google. The deal – the first of its kind between the search engine and a consumer goods company – will give the Dutch brewer access to Google’s vast wealth of user data. In return, Heineken will spend a guaranteed amount on digital advertising, including on YouTube, the video-sharing site Google acquired in 2006.

Record profits for brewer Greene King

Greene King has posted record profits, buoyed by a strong performance from its pubs business. Sales at the brewer of Abbots Ale and Old Speckled Hen were up 6% to break the £1bn barrier. Pre-tax profits grew by almost 14% over the year to 1 May, reaching a new high of £140m. Profits for its brewing arm, meanwhile, increased by 4%.

Activist investor takes chunk of Cadbury parent

After its grilling in the House of Commons, the leadership of Kraft Foods is set to come under another kind of scrutiny. Activist investor Nelson Peltz has bought a $420m (£262.4m) stake in the company via his hedfe fund, Trian Fund Management. Peltz previously took a stake in Kraft before selling up last year. In 2007 he pushed for change at the US manufacturer, which agreed to add two new directors to its board.

RB promotes Camillo Pane to global role

Camillo Pane, the general manager of Reckitt Benckiser UK, has been promoted to senior vice president of the company’s global healthcare business. Pane will be replaced by Alan Thompson, currently general manager of RB Canada, who will relocate to the UK in July and take responsibility for the UK business.

HMV swings to loss after sales plummet

HMV Group has reported a £122m loss for the year to April, hit by declining sales at its entertainment stores. The ailing music and entertainment retailer, which has issued several profit warnings in the past year, says that total group sales fell 7.4% in the 53 weeks to 30 April, while like-for-like sales were down 11%.

Keri Link is a consultant on the Interim team