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Retail Rapture: UK Grocery Sales Drop 1st Time In 20 Years, Dollar General To Shut 4000 Stores

For the first time since it began collecting data in 1994, Kantar Worldpanel, the market researcher, reported a decline in UK grocery sales by value, as The FT reports the biggest UK grocers were "losing market share hand over fist," as analysts warn "there are phoney price wars, and there are real price wars. This is a real price war." This comes on the heels of Goldman report claiming 20% of British grocers are surplus to requirements. But it's not just Britain... in the the cleanest dirty shirt world-economic-growth supporting decoupled economy of the USA, Reuters reports Dollar General may need to divest more than 4,000 stores to win approval from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission for its acquisition of Family Dollar.

 

As The FT reports, Britain’s supermarkets have suffered their first fall in sales in at least 20 years as lower food prices and a vicious price war cut the amount customers spend on groceries.

For the first time since it began collecting data in 1994, Kantar Worldpanel, the market researcher, reported a decline in UK grocery sales by value.
“There are phoney price wars, and there are real price wars. This is a real price war,” said Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel.

 

...

 

Britain’s big chains have pledged to spend billions of pounds cutting prices in an effort to stem the growth of German discounters Aldi and Lidl.

 

...

 

On Monday, research from Goldman Sachs said 20 per cent of UK supermarket space was surplus to requirements following the rise of discounters including Aldi and Lidl, the demise of the weekly shop and the increase in online grocery shopping.

But it's not just Britain that faces retail pressure... (as Reuters reports)

Dollar General may need to divest more than 4,000 stores to win approval from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission for its acquisition of Family Dollar Stores, the New York Post reported, citing two sources close to the situation.

 

Dollar General has agreed to sell up to 1,500 stores as part of its $9.1 billion offer. It approached Family Dollar shareholders with its offer directly in September after twice being spurned by its smaller rival.

 

The New York Post reported on Wednesday that Dollar General could be forced either to raise its bid again or to divest more than double the number of stores previously pledged.

Synergies?

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But apart from that...escape velocity here we come.