Grocery retailers led by Albertsons Cos. and Sprouts Farmers Market this week provided an indication of what may lie ahead in an industry that’s undergone a drastic reset of customer demand due to the coronavirus crisis. Both of those companies—later joined by Amazon—smashed expectations for profits as a new earnings season began. Those stories, along with a consequential executive departure at Lidl, and some significant new store openings and tech developments, highlighted WGB’s industry coverage for the week of July 27.
Albertsons Moves to 'Win' the Pandemic
The retailer is spending heavier to grow and maintain millions of new shoppers amid a historic shift, CEO Vivek Sankaran says.
Sprouts Drives Profits Even Higher in Q2
The natural foods retailer said pandemic demand, a promotional reset and expense leverage pushed gross margins to 37.3% on a 16% sales gain.
Stop & Shop to Unleash New Digital Experience
A forthcoming revamp of digital properties, including a new rewards program and the retirement of Peapod branding, is expected to enable deeper personalization for Ahold Delhaize’s largest U.S. banner.
Wegmans' Not-So-Secret West Cary, N.C., Debut
The retailer's newest store in West Cary, N.C., set to open July 29, will feature a Live Wait Line Feed camera that allows shoppers to monitor customer turnout online and plan their visit accordingly.
Lidl U.S. Chairman Roman Heini Departing
The high-profile executive, who joined the fledgling but influential hard discounter 17 months ago, cites personal reasons; Johannes Fieber will continue as CEO.
Whole Foods Takes Manhattan
Whole Foods Market's recently opened Manhattan West store features a convenient ground floor grab-and-go-market, a sparkling seafood department, locally brewed beers and much more.
Grocery Robots Take the Floor at Woodman's
The autonomous robots will be monitoring product availability, verifying prices and delivering location data.
How Retailers Are Addressing the National Coin Shortage
With no timeline on when circulation patterns will return to normal, Southeastern Grocers and Kroger are encouraging customers to round up their bills, while Meijer has converted its self-checkout lanes to debit/credit only.
Ryan Cuba Promoted to Chief Merchant at Schnucks
With more than 25 years of retail experience, Cuba most recently was chief business development and transformation officer of the St. Louis retailer.
Food Bazaar–Fairway Deal Gets Court OK
The operator of the multiethnic superstore chain Food Bazaar will take over Fairway units in Brooklyn and Queens.
Whole Foods' Plant-Based Push in D.C.
Take a peek inside the retailer's new 46,000-square-foot store in Washington, D.C., which features plant-based burgers, a scratch bakery, local offerings and much more.
COVID Throws a Lifeline to Blue Apron
Pandemic demand turns around Q2 results, but the meal-kit company is still seeking financial help.
Farmstead Moving to Larger Facility to Accommodate Growing Delivery Demands
The new space in Burlingame, Calif., is expected to increase the online grocer’s delivery capacity by 10x; Farmstead says the pandemic accelerated the adoption of grocery delivery by 3 to 4 years.
Saving a Small-Town Grocery Store? Proceed Carefully
Rural towns rescuing a struggling grocery store is a great story but it takes a diligent approach to research.