business news in context, analysis with attitude

  • Albertsons has announced plans to consolidate its northern California warehouse operations, closing a 440,000 square foot facility in San Leandro and shifting its load to two other distribution facilities, in Roseville and Vacaville. The move is designed to make the retailers’ operations more cost efficient.

  • The Boston Globe reports this morning that 7-Eleven plans to open 41 new stores in Beantown over the next three years, which will brings its presence there to almost 70. The paper notes that the retailer is pursuing a strategy that has it stressing its roots as a “neighborhood store,” and even is willing to downplay or even get rid of its tradition décor accoutrements in order to win local approval.

  • Published reports say that Wal-Mart’s Asda Group will shortly become the UK’s largest clothing retailer, exceeding the sales in the category generated by troubled retailer Marks & Spencer.

    Marks & Spencer current has a 9.1 percent market share, and Asda has 8.9 percent of the market…but Asda is on the ascendancy and Marks & Spencer is stagnant at best.

  • Published reports suggest that Target is looking for a UK acquisition – Sainsbury and general merchandise retailer Matalan are prominently mentioned as likely possibilities.

    The move would come as the company has divested its Mervyn’s chain, which was not considered to be part of its core strategy. However, if Target is to keep pace with Wal-Mart, a move into the UK with an appropriate acquisition may be considered a necessity.

  • Crispers, a quick-serve restaurant chain owned by Publix, reportedly is planning to expand significantly over the coming year, opening five in Florida between now and mid-2005. The openings will double the size of the chain.

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