retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Financial Times this morning reporting that Ahold Delhaize plans "to make more acquisitions in the US as the shift to ecommerce drives smaller businesses out of the market."

CEO Frans Muller tells FT that he expects considerable consolidation among small and family-owned companies without the capital to expand into e-commerce or succession plans that make their businesses viable in a post-pandemic environment.

Some context from FT:

"Ahold has already been on the acquisition trail. Last year it took an 80 per cent stake in the New York online grocery service FreshDirect for an undisclosed price. Its Food Lion chain also agreed to acquire 62 BI-LO and Harveys Supermarket stores in North and South Carolina and Georgia from Southeastern Grocers, also for an undisclosed price.

"Ecommerce is an increasingly important part of its strategy. Although online grocery retail is less well established in the US than in Europe, partly because of the existence of intermediary delivery services like Instacart, Ahold nevertheless doubled its US online revenues to more than $2bn in the year to January 3 and expects sales to grow another 60 per cent this year."

KC's View:

I want to see how the FreshDirect integration works before I'm ready to say that this will be a good thing.  But that said, it appears to be a sellers' market …  If you match Muller's criteria, I'd shoot him a note at frans.Muller@aholddelhaize.com.