retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Reuters reports that Walmart-owned Asda Group plans to spend the equivalent of $1.6 billion (US) "on price cuts and product innovation as it seeks to expand its share of the UK grocery market" over the next five years.

The investment is being heralded via a new slogan, "You're Better Off At Asda."

According to the story, "Asda, which runs behind market leader Tesco Plc by annual sales and is battling to fend off a challenge for Britain's No. 2 place from a resurgent J Sainsbury Plc, said it would spend the sum to keep prices below inflation over the next five years."

One of the other things that Asda is focusing on, according to CEO Andy Clarke, is the possibility of developing a small store/c-store concept, something the retailer previously had rejected. "In the next five years, and towards the end of that time horizon, we will explore the opportunity for convenience, the sub 3,000 square foot retail space that we don't currently trade," he said.
KC's View:
Interesting, I think, that Asda is considering a c-store initiative at the same time as the parent company is building its first convenience unit in Arkansas. Maybe a coincidence, but maybe a broader indicator of where the market is headed.