X5 ups stake in Russian retail chain
MOSCOW: X5 Retail Group NV has increased its stake in Russian chain Pyaterochka and signed a franchise agreement to roll out 30 new stores. Russia's largest retailer said it has acquired a further 24% of Pyaterochka for US$11m (£5.6m). This has increased its stake in the company to 75% and the retailer been given the option to buy the remaining quarter next year. X5 Retail Group NV has also agreed to allow Prodmag to develop a minimum of 30 Pyaterochka franchises in the Ivanovo and Kostroma areas over the next two years, while retaining the option to purchase the stores by 2011.

Delhaize to become AMS partner
BRUSSELS: Delhaize Group is to join European private label buying alliance AMS , from 1 January 2009. Until then, the retailer will maintain its partnership with European Marketing Distribution (EMD), which it joined in 2001. "As a partner of AMS, we will be able to improve our private label programmes further and create economies of scale that will benefit the consumer," said Renaud Cogels, executive vice president Delhaize Group, CEO, southeastern Europe and Asia and head of global sourcing. "Private label products have become an increasingly important tool for differentiation and building customer loyalty, especially in our historical Belgian and European markets. "

Strike is on at Italian pasta factory
SAN SEPOLCRO, ITALY: Workers have gone on strike at a Buitoni pasta factory after reports that Swiss investment group TMT Finance SA had acquired it from Nestlé. The factory, in San Sepolcro, Tuscany, employs 450 and produces pasta and crisp bread under the Buitoni brand. Trade union representatives expressed concerns before the announcement of the acquisition and workers walked out this week. Buitoni has 4% of Italy's fresh pasta market and less than 1% of the dry pasta market. The takeover is TMT's second acquisition in the food industry in the past few months after it recently bought Newlat from Parmalat.

German retailer's footprint first
DUSSELDORF: Metro has become the first retailer in Germany to publish its carbon footprint and has said it is aiming to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 15% by 2015. The carbon footprint covered the company's logistics, energy consumption, paper consumption and refrigerant consumption. Metro worked with the Oko-Institut in Frelburg to work out the footprint, which was calculated to be 406kg of carbon dioxide per square metre. Energy consumption accounted for the majority (60%) of carbon dioxide emissions. The second biggest factor was logistics at 21%, then refrigerant emissions with 9%. Metro said it had taken measures on climate protection, which had reduced operating costs and carbon dioxide emissions in the past few years. It is now focusing on decreasing refrigerant evaporation, saving energy and reducing paper consumption.