RUSSIA: X5 Retail Group has acquired an additional 20% stake in Express Retail, taking its total ownership to 60%. The group now has the option to acquire the remaining 40% of the business by 2013. Andrey Gusev, X5's director for M&A, said the development tightened the group's grip on the market.

"This transaction gives X5 operational control over Perekrestok-Express stores. Consolidating this business as part of X5 will enable further efficiencies and a more integrated approach to managing convenience stores as part of our multi-format strategy." Express Retail operates 52 Perekrestok-Express convenience stores in Moscow and is developing several franchising projects.

US: Walmart is to pay a $27.6m settlement after being accused of inappropriately disposing of pesticide, fertiliser, paint, aerosols and other chemicals at 236 of its stores and distribution centres across California. The settlement ends a five-year investigation. A Walmart spokesman stressed that the company had now changed its procedures.

FRANCE: Carrefour has announced that it is on track to achieve total cost savings of 3.1bn by 2012. Chief executive Lars Olofsson also told shareholders at the group's annual meeting in Paris this week that it could withdraw from countries where it was not the market leader to concentrate on fast-growing business in India and China.

It would not be revealing the identity of its new partner in India for another couple of months, he added. Indian media reports have speculated that the company has struck a deal with India-based Future Group, which owns chains such as Pantaloon Retail and Big Bazaar.

BELGIUM: Delhaize Group announced comparable store sales down 1.8% in the US and up 4.3% in Belgium at its Q1 results this week. Operating profit was up 1.7% with a stable operating margin of 4.9% and outstanding operating margin of 5.3% in Belgium.

Delhaize CEO Pierre-Olivier Beckers said the group remained committed to achieving its 300m annual gross cost savings target by the end of 2012.