Tipsheet: Kroger +1.5% | H.Depot +$50M to Train | WM Brazil $3B Back Taxes


Kroger Q4 Comp Sales (w/o gas) +1.5% “Excluding fuel, the 53rd week and the Modern Health merger, total sales increased 2.2% in 2017 compared to 2016.” Press release


Costco February Comp Sales +7.7% (w/o gas & FX) Press release


…Costco Outshines Other Discount Chains, But Concerns Linger by Matthew Boyle at Bloomberg. “…shares dipped more than 1 percent in late trading, a sign investors need more convincing in the wake of disappointing numbers from Walmart Inc., Target Corp. and — earlier on Wednesday — Dollar Tree Inc.” Read more


Home Depot to donate $50M to train construction workers by Paul Davidson at USA Today. “The Home Builders Institute (HBI) is training about 3,500 construction workers a year, says CEO John Courson. But the money, which comes from the Labor Department, states, and local workforce boards, is precarious, with HBI perennially scrambling to renew grants. The Home Depot program will increase the number of graduates who receive certificates by 2,000 a year for the next decade, or nearly 60%.” Read more


Burlington Q4 Comp Sales +5.9% Press release


Walmart Brazil ops bidders peg unit’s back taxes at up to $3 billion – sources at Reuters. “Buyout firms Advent International Corp, GP Investments Ltd and Acon Investments delivered non-binding offers for a majority stake in Walmart’s Brazil unit in late January and became aware of the unpaid tax bill while digging into the company’s books, the people said.” Read more


Rent-A-Center in talks with possible buyers, cuts 250 jobs at Reuters. “Rent-A-Center has been exploring strategic options since October last year. Its top management, including its chief executive, chairman and chief operating officer have all stepped down since then.” Read more


Abercrombie’s holiday comps rise for the first time in 5 years by Lisa Fickenscher at NY Post. “Total sales gained 15 percent in the period, ended Jan. 28, to $1.2 billion — led by Hollister’s 11 percent same-store gain.” Read more


…Abercrombie & Fitch to close 60 more stores at CNBC. “Last year, it closed nearly 40 stores…In 2016, it closed about 50 shops.” Read more


An inside look at Lowe’s digital marketing strategy by Zak Stambor at Internet Retailer. “The ads, which were Pinterest’s one-tap promoted pins that take a shopper who taps directly to your chosen landing page, generated a return on ad spend 76% greater than its goal. And, compared to averages from the same period a year earlier, the Shopping ads delivered a 20% higher click-through rate and a 43% lower cost per click.” Read more


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Cub will open its first small, urban concept grocery store in 2019 by John Ewoldt at Star Tribune. “The 46,000-square-foot store, about half the size of the largest Cub stores, is also the first to anchor a residential complex. “This store is unlike anything you’ll see in any Cub,” said Anne Dament, executive vice president of retail, marketing and private brands.” Read more (Tiered subs.)


Former Amazon executive Sam Hall joins Grubhub as its chief product officer by Katherine Davis at Chicago Business Journal. Read more


Casey’s Discloses Increased Value Creation Plan “Casey’s is establishing the following same-store sales expectations for FY 2021:

Fuel Gallons: 4+%
Grocery & Other Merchandise: 6+%
Prepared Food & Foundation: 10+%  Press release


Walmart U.S., will participate at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2018 Consumer & Retail Technology Conference on 3/14/18 Press release


EX-ETSY – Dollar General Names New VP of Investor Relations and Public Relations Press release


In China, retailers cash in on ‘she’ economy for Women’s Day at Reuters. “Across the globe, women are hosting workshops, protests and dinner parties to celebrate the women’s rights movement and press for progress on gender equality. But in China, the day was dominated by sales campaigns from online retailers, a trend that has angered women’s rights activists who want to reclaim the day as an opportunity to make progress on issues like combating sexual harassment.” Read more


Former REI CEO Sally Jewell will join the board of life insurance company Symetra by Ashley Stewart at Puget Sound Business Journal. Read more


Walmart CIO repackages IT service as a product by Clint Boulton at CIO. “Agile is fast; DevOps is faster. At Walmart, (Clay) Johnson says software developers in his staff of 10,000 IT workers are practicing DevOps, in which continuous integration and continuous delivery (CICD) methods enable enterprises to push out upgrades to software daily.” Read more (Registration)


Quebec retail sales up 6% in 2017 at Montreal Gazette. Read more


H&M to Work With South African Marketing Companies Following “Racist” Hoodie Scandal by Sam Reed at Hollywood Reporter. “In South Africa, the Economic Freedom Fighters — South Africa’s self-described “radical and militant” opposition party — launched widespread disruptive protests leading to the destruction of some H&M stores.” Read more


Solar panels catch fire on roof of Walmart store at Dayton Daily News. Video/Pics/Read more


Tipsheet Extra Stories

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Amazon thinks it has a fix to Alexa’s terrifying laughing issue

Walmart health executive George Riedl to depart

Ikea’s new CFO to maintain investment drive through 2020

Read Tipsheet Extra Stories

Alice Walton retakes top ‘Forbes’ spot as world’s richest woman

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