Dairy giant Arla Foods grabbed the headlines this week with the admission 250 jobs could go at the company, with the possibility of more to come, as it looks to drive efficiency. Elsewhere, Kellogg announced a brand “refresh”, although industry watchers argued the company might have to do more to drive sales. The takeover battle for frozen food giant Iglo Group gathered pace, with Thai food company CP Foods linked to the Birds Eye owner. Meanwhile, Wal-Mart Stores reported its first-quarter results and won praise from analysts.
SWEDEN: Arla Foods considering further synergies
Arla Foods has indicated it is mulling further efficiency gains having yesterday (15 May) announced 250 job cuts as it restructures its global business.
In the spotlight – Kellogg could need more than brand “refresh”
Kellogg’s namesake brand is one of the world’s oldest but, this week, the cereal giant announced a relaunch of the 106-year-old label. The US group is operating in a tough domestic cereal market and it is facing challenges in Europe. Analysts have argued Kellogg is trying to breathe fresh life into a brand facing stiff competition, including increasingly from own label. Michelle Russell reports.
UK: Bain Capital, CD&R “fall away in Iglo race”
Two of the private-equity firms that reportedly tabled bids for frozen food giant Iglo Group are said to have not progressed to the second round of the auction.
On the money: Wal-Mart focuses US price investment on grocery
Wal-Mart Stores has focused its investment in pricing on the grocery aisle as it looks to grow customer traffic and loyalty in the US.
Talking shop: Price-driven Asda prospers – for now
Asda, the UK’s second-largest retailer, has reported “market-leading growth” in early weeks of 2012. Analysts say Asda’s focus on price has helped the retailer gain shoppers from the likes of Tesco and Morrisons, although, if and when the economy recovers, it may need to demonstrate it can offer consumers more. Dean Best reports.
Talking tech: Technology driving development of convenience format
Convenience retailing is well placed to capitalise on the public’s appetite for easy shopping with technology, including mobile, cloud-based operations systems and location-linked promos, driving the sector’s development. Andrew Don reports.
FRANCE: Louis Dreyfus Commodities confirms bond issue
Louis Dreyfus Commodities is to issue bonds for the first time in its history as it prepares to step up acquisitions.
Focus: FDA restates intentions on nutritional food labelling
The FDA’s recently announced 2012-2016 strategic plan includes specific reference to both front-of-pack nutritional labelling and reform of the nutrition facts panel. Details of how the FDA plans to proceed remain sketchy, Ben Cooper writes, but the fact that these two items are firmly on the policy agenda ensures a lively debate will continue and possibly intensify during the coming few years.