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October 17, 2011

Quote, unquote: just-food’s week in words

After losing the support of the Metro Group board, CEO Dr Eckhard Cordes this week announced his plan to leave the world's third-largest retailer by next year. Elsewhere in retail, Sainsbury's made its latest move in the battle for the UK's deal-hungry consumers and the country's retailers met at the annual IGD conference. On the other side of the Atlantic, meanwhile, PepsiCo brushed off the latest questions on whether the company was considering to split in two.

After losing the support of the Metro Group board, CEO Dr Eckhard Cordes this week announced his plan to leave the world’s third-largest retailer by next year. Elsewhere in retail, Carrefour issued another profit warning, while Sainsbury’s made its latest move in the battle for the UK’s deal-hungry consumers. On the other side of the Atlantic, meanwhile, PepsiCo brushed off the latest questions on whether the company was considering to split in two.

“He decided that knowing there is no support, he will not extend his contract,” – a source close to the situation reveals CEO Dr Eckhard Cordes received a vote of no confidence from the retailer’s supervisory board.

“Faced with an increasingly uncertain environment, we are, as a matter of prudence, broadening the range of our 2011 current operating income guidance to a decline of 15% to 20%” – Carrefour CEO Lars Olofsson announces the retailer’s latest profit warning.

“The launch of Sainsbury’s Brand Match across the UK represents a revolution in retail” – Sainsbury’s commercial director Mike Coupe throws down the guantlet in the battle for UK consumers.

“In a year where we continued to focus on price, we now have the fastest growing own-label brand” – Asda CEO Andy Clarke, speaking at the annual IGD Convention in London, claims the company now has the fastest-growing private label of the UK’s major retailers.

“Retailers are optimists, the economy is gloomy but you get on and adapt and we will get out it and we will come out of it in better shape” – At the IGD Convention in LondonThe Co-operative Group chief executive Peter Marks tries to remain upbeat about trading conditions in the UK economy.

“We see ourselves has having highly complementary businesses and taking it apart I know would be very costly and I really don’t see the benefit in doing so” PepsiCo CFO Hugh Johnston quashes suggestions that the global snacks and beverage giant could split into two.

“It does not make sense to require every single farm to stop producing on a certain percentage of their land (ecological set-aside) when world food demand is set to rise by 70% by 2050 and production is threatened by more extremes of drought, flooding and storms,” EU farmers organisation COPA-COGECA, criticises the European Commission’s aim to add greater concern for the environment in its plans to reform the CAP.

“Our next focus will be the MENA region. That is a key region for us. I can’t say too much about it at the moment but very shortly there will be developments for Spar in the MENA region” – Tobias Wasmuht, international retail and marketing director at retailer Spar International, hints at expansion into the Middle East and north Africa.

“Asia is the market we want” – Stefan Keller, executive vice president of DMK’s cheese division, emphasises the German dairy giant’s ambitions for Asia.

“In a declining market where consumers are spending less and continuously looking for value Superquinn has struggled to retain market share. We believe that working with the Superquinn team we can tackle these considerable challenges and develop the business for the future” – Musgrave Group CEO Chris Martin is confident that the Irish retailer can turn around new acquisition Superquinn.

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