Smart & Final Stores has upgraded its demand forecasting, inventory control and operations through its Symphony Gold omnichannel technology platform, which now includes category management, store replenishment and mobility and a vendor portal. Through the upgrade, the retailer will be able to use the platform to tailor merchandise to individual stores.
Costco has partnered with Shipt to expand a home grocery delivery test to the Tampa, Fla., area. The service is already available in the San Francisco market in partnership with Instacart.
German discount grocers ALDI and Lidl are poised to gain market share and lead major changes in the US food retail industry over the next few years, according to Bill Bishop, chief architect of Brick Meets Click, and Bill Bolton, former CEO of Jewel Foods. The retailers, which will account for up to $67 billion in combined sales and operate about 3,500 US stores by 2021, will disrupt the industry due in part to their popularity among shoppers and their reputations for offering low prices, they said.
General Mills is boosting its marketing investment to increase sales of cereal and yogurt, and has launched a ready-to-eat popcorn line under its Annie's Homegrown label. "Annie's is our largest brand, and retail sales are increasing nearly 40% so far this year in US Nielsen-measured outlets," said COO Jeff Harmening.
Mythic, a company that provides technology for artificial intelligence-based programs, has raised $9.3 million, partly via a Series A round of funding. The company will use the funds to move to commercial production of its software and chips.
Amazon will expand its program aimed at removing counterfeit goods from its website by allowing brands to register intellectual property and logos. The brand registry will allow Amazon to remove listings and even sellers when counterfeit products are flagged.
Meijer will close two of its 90,000-square-foot small-format stores in the Chicago area this summer, the company said Tuesday. In recent years, the retailer has been investing in 200,000-square-foot supercenters in the Chicago suburbs, which have been more successful, a company spokesman said.
Traditional grocers account for about 16.6% of the $40 billion personal care market, according to a study by TABS Analytics. Grocers were led only by Wal-Mart, who claims a 19.4% market share, and were followed by Target at 12.1%, the study found.
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