Retail Sectors

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Walmart shakes up U.S. leadership teams in food, merchandising

Walmart is making big changes to its food leadership team, according to an internal memo obtained by Reuters. “The changes come at a time when the world's largest retailer has been conducting price tests across several U.S. states and pushing vendors to undercut rivals,” according to the report, which also pointed to increased pressures from Lidl and the expansion of Aldi, who with strong private brands portfolios have “raised the stakes for American grocery chain operators.” (Reuters)

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Food Lion expands Nature’s Place brand

It’s part of the company’s $178 million capital investment in the city, which includes remodeling stores, lowering prices, hiring hundreds of associates and growing one of its private brands.

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Supervalu snaps up Central Grocers warehouse

Supervalu Holdings is buying Central Grocers' Joliet distribution center for $61 million, reported the Chicago Tribune. The deal, approved by a bankruptcy court judge earlier this week, may put more store brands in supermarkets: “Consumers likely will notice a greater variety of store-branded items in grocery stores previously served by Central Grocers, which operated as a wholesaler for more than 400 independent stores in the Chicago area.” (Chicago Tribune)

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Round one to Lidl US in trademark dispute

A judge in Richmond early this week denied Kroger's request to stop Lidl from using the “Preferred Selection” logo, reported the Richmond Times-Dispatch. U.S. District Judge John A. Gibney Jr. made the call “after a day of testimony in which both sides presented expert witnesses who surveyed consumers to gauge confusion over the product logos … and set the case for a bench trial Jan. 11.” According to the report, Kroger officials made Lidl aware of their concerns about the similarity of the logos last year when Lidl filed its trademark application. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)