FRANCE: Carrefour has opened two new concept stores in France this week in a bid to lift European sales. The two hypermarkets, in the Lyon suburbs of Ecully and Vénissieux, are designed to offer consumers a new shopping experience by splitting products into specialist designated areas.

These range from frozen food and organic through to home décor and fashion. The stores are better ventilated with wider aisles and a simpler colour signage system to help shoppers move around faster.

NIGERIA: Spar International has entered the Nigerian market with its first supermarket in Lagos. Spar worked with Nigerian partner the Artee Group to develop the 30,000 sq ft store, which will target customers with "moderate to high-income profiles".

The Artee Group already operates Park 'n' Shop shopping centres and supermarkets in Nigeria. It has acquired six further locations for Spar supermarkets and plans to open at least four more stores before the end of the year. Spar also operates in Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe and has 803 outlets in South Africa with a 28% market share. 

SPAIN: The European Commission has cleared the acquisition of Spanish group Puleva Food's dairy business by French giant Groupe Lactalis for over £500m. The Commission's investigation specifically centred around the supply of raw cows milk in Spain as well as sales of other dairy products. It concluded the transaction would not significantly impede effective competition in Europe or Spain. Last year, Ebro Puleva offloaded its sugar business Azucarera Ebro to Associated British Foods for £315m.

US: Whole Foods Market has launched an iPhone app to help users learn more about healthy eating, search for recipe ideas and build shopping lists. The Whole Foods Market Missions on the iPhone is designed to provide "better health in your pocket", offering advice on cooking, nutrition, green living and food storage. The app also features challenges to encourage users to improve their lifestyles and share accomplishments via social networks such as Facebook and Twitter.

EGYPT: Marks & Spencer will open its first store in Egypt later this year. The 20,600 sq ft store will offer a selection of family fashion, beauty and home products at the Dandy Mega Mall in Cairo and is the result of a franchise partnership with Al Futtaim Group. M&S is also opening a flagship store in Cairo Festival City in spring 2012.

SUDAN: SABMiller's subsidiary company Southern Sudan Beverages is doubling the size of its existing brewery operations in Juba and has introduced a soft drinks range and bottled water. By the end of this year, brewery operations will have increased to 350,000hl from 180,000hl in May 2009. Carbonated soft drink capacity is also increasing following the recent launch of Source bottled water and the Club Minerals line of sparkling sodas.