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Online retail news in brief (21 February 2018)

By IMRG

Hand and tablet for online retail news 21 february 2018

In case you missed them, we’ve pulled together a few online retail news highlights from around the web this week.

Here are some of the latest stories in online retail.

Surprisingly strong start to the year for Online Retail

UK online retail sales were up +13.9% year-on-year (YoY) in January, according to the latest figures from the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index. With rainfall above average in January, and the lowest January high street footfall recorded in 5 years, shoppers turned to online this January.

Even the expected post-Christmas month-on-month (MoM) decline in sales from December to January, which came in at -20.4%, was less than the 5-year average of -24.1%.

Physical sales in entertainment drop again

According to data from Kantar Worldpanel, sales of media entertainment media dropped by 8.8% in the 12 weeks to 14 January.

  • Video saw the biggest drop in the category, at -21%
  • Music also struggled against digital competitors, with a -5.8% drop
  • On the other hand, video games saw an increase in physical sales, of +2.1%

6.1% YoY growth for frozen food

Kantar Worldpanel also reported 6.1% year-on-year growth in frozen food in the 52 weeks ending 3 December.

  • Savoury food grew 8.8%
  • Ice cream grew 8.5%
  • vegetables grew 7.2%
  • fish grew 6.7%

British Frozen Food Federation chief executive John Hyman: “It’s great news to see the value of the category continuing to grow at a faster rate. The growth is in part due to the continuing premiumisation of frozen food and a growing awareness by consumers that frozen can be as good as or better quality than fresh and is often superior value.”

Monoprix in negotiations for Sarenza

French chain Monoprix has entered into negotiations to acquire online shoe retailer Sarenza.

Régis Schultz, chairman of Monoprix: “In our city-centre locomotives stores, Monoprix uniquely combines a food offering, a non-food offering and innovative services. It is perfectly logical to recreate this complete offering online. After the agreement with Ocado last November, which reinforces our leading status on food delivery, Monoprix will position itself, with Sarenza, as a major player in non-food ecommerce.”

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WeChat pay coming to European airports

Lagardère Travel Retail has launched a WeChat Pay service at Terminal 1 at Charles de Gaulle, and intends to roll it out to further European destinations.

WeChat is hugely popular in China, and the trials coincided with Chinese New Year, a typical season of travel.

Cash payments to fall behind card this year?

Data from UK Finance predicts that 2018 will be the year that card payments become more common than cash transactions.

Mark Latham, director of card machine provider Handepay: “Britain has well and truly embraced a cashless society because of its ease and convenience.”

Vaultex handles roughly a third of the UK’s cash. Commercial director Mark Trevor: “While industry figures do show a decline in cash use, the idea that we will all be going cashless has been greatly exaggerated.”

Biscuit ‘thief’ PC faces tribunal

A police constable accused of taking a biscuit tin from a colleague has been subject to a disciplinary hearing.

Inspector Sarah Blake was asked why she thought the matter warranted the involvement of the Directorate of Professional Standards. She claimed that it was justified due to the “gravity of the situation”. She added that the offer to replace the biscuits was not sufficient to draw the matter to a close.

“By that time the biscuits had been eaten and, in my mind, theft is theft. How was he going to put the biscuits back?”

How indeed.

Source: Daily Star

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