Inside Knowledge: This weeks latest industry news

Each week the Savvy Insight Team draws together the latest industry news, interesting facts and marketing intelligence from around the world and pieces it into one article. Simply click on the highlighted source to read the full article.

Ocado has announced a rise in annual profits. The online grocer reported a 21.8% increase in pre-tax profits to £14.5m for the year to 27 November. Chief Executive Tim Steiner said it had achieved “robust trading” in a challenging environment. However, the average size fell 2.7% to £108.10 against the backdrop of continuing supermarket price wars. Annual revenues rose 14.8% to £1.27bn, and the retailer’s customer base grew by almost 14% over the year to 580,000. BBC News

Bunnings Warehouse opened its doors to customers this week, replacing the former Homebase in Griffiths Way, St Albans. It is the first Homebase to be converted since the Bunnings owner Wesfarmers acquired the chain last year in a deal worth £340m. With £500m of investment from Wesfarmers, the Bunnings team plans to transform the entire 265-unit Homebase estate over the next three to five years. Retail Week

British triathletes Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee have agreed a four-year partnership with Aldi to support the discounter’s campaign to improve young people’s eating habits. They join boxer Nicola Adams and fellow Team GB members Samantha Murray and gymnast Dan Purvis in supporting its Get Set to Eat Fresh educational programme. Aldi said it hoped the programme would develop an understanding and love of fresh, healthy food, the skills required to cook for themselves, and the desire to celebrate food with friends and family. Since its inception four years ago, 400,000 young people have been reached through Get Set to Eat Fresh with more than 2,000 schools signing up to the programme. The Grocer

House of Fraser is set to anchor a new £300m retail complex in Chester, which will open in 2021. The chain will open a 100,000 sq ft store over three floors, with a rooftop restaurant overlooking Chester’s racecourse. The beauty hall will be twice the average size, tapping into the high-turnover category’s power to drive footfall. The 500,000 complex will redevelop Chester’s city centre, housing 70 stores, cafes and restaurants, a hotel and a conference centre, a six-screen cinema and 70 homes. The Chester Northgate development will be House of Fraser’s second major store since its acquisition by Chinese conglomerate Sanpower in later 2014. Retail Week

Sainsbury’s has become the eighth major supermarket to back The Grocer’s Waste Not Want Not campaign. The supermarket joins Tesco, Morrisons, M&S, Waitrose, Aldi, Lidl and Ocado in lending its support to the major food waste campaign launched in May 2016. The target to double redistribution of surplus food by 2018 and create greater co-operation and transparency within industry mirror many of the aims of Sainsbury’s own Waste Less Save More initiative, according to CEO Mike Coupe. The Grocer


Heineken has extended its 23-year sponsorship of the UEFA Champions League for a further three years. The brand will continue as an official partner until summer 2021. The partnership also includes sister competition the UEFA Super Cup for the next three years. The new contract includes an agreement for Heineken’s brand to be featured on LED advertising boards around football pitches of Champions League matches, and the rights to exclusive Champions League branded content, such as the Back Stadium Tour and UEFA Champions League Trophy Tour. The Grocer

Budweiser is taking over Shoreditch street food provider Dinerama with a party celebrating the Super Bowl. Taking place on 5 February, the event aims to bring all the excitement of this year’s Super Bowl to fans in the UK. It will include the chance to watch the Super Bowl Live, drink ice-cold Budweisers and eat American-inspired dishes from Dinerama’s street food traders, including BBQ subs, chilli dogs and peanut butter doughnuts.  Event Magazine

Danone brand Light & Free has teamed up with Spotify UK for a year-long partnership to strengthen connections between the brand and a music-loving audience. Spotify has partnered with Light & Free to offer unique music prizes throughout 2017 where a small group of winners will see their favourite top-tier artists perform. Danone Dairies Marketing Manager Francois Brugiere said “Entering into the world of music is an innovative way for us to give something back to audiences not only through content and music but also in terms of delivering unique experiences that money can’t buy”. Event Magazine

Arla Foods UK will plough a further £37.5m in its UK operations this year as it continues its efforts to add value back into milk. The UK investment is part of a wider £285 million investment in Arla’s global business to support its 2020 strategy of “moving more milk from bulk into branded, own label and foodservice sales”, according to the Co-op. It is the highest single-year supply chain investment in the company’s history, and represents a 50% increase from its spend last year. The £37.5m will be spread across the company’s thirteen UK production, packing and distribution sites, as well its logistics operations. The Grocer

Walkers kicked off an eight-week TV campaign coinciding with the first knockout round of the UEFA Champions League this week. The ad introduces the new platform #WalkersUnited and promotes the brand’s new resealable sharing packs, which are aimed at social occasions such as a night of watching the game. The new positioning replaces the first set of messaging for the brand’s Champions League sponsorship, which was based around the hashtag #GameReady. Campaign

Molson Coors has given its Carling portfolio a ‘modern’ makeover designed to increase shelf standout and create consistency across the brand. The updated range, rolling out across the lager, cider, citrus twist and premier brews from the beginning of next month, is described as “bold and striking”. It had been designed to reinforce Carling’s position as “Britain’s original and best loved lager”, according to Brand Director Jim Shearer. The Grocer

Fever-Tree drove the vast majority of the £20m growth in mixers last year as Schweppes continued to lose its grip on the category. Fever-Tree’s off-trade sales were up by £18.1m in the year ending 1 January 2017, meaning the brand accounted for 92% of the £19.7m total market growth, with the remainder coming mostly from own label. Tim Warrillow, Fever Tree co-founder and CEO predicts the brand would continue to be supported by the long-term growth in premium spirits, as well as the growing movement towards mixed and long drinks, and revealed that further NPD would be launched in the coming months. The Grocer