Financial Mail - - SHOP TALK -

1. Ama­zon’s UK ex­pan­sion

Ama­zon is set to open a new of­fice in Manch­ester and will hire more than 1,000 new staff mem­bers to work on re­search and de­vel­op­ment in the UK. The tech giant said it would hire ad­di­tional staff in Manch­ester, Ed­in­burgh and Cam­bridge as part of its boosted in­vest­ment in the re­gion. The UK is a ma­jor in­ter­na­tional mar­ket for Ama­zon, which made pre­tax prof­its of £72.4m in the coun­try last year.

2. Unilever’s new scoop

Unilever, the com­pany be­hind Ben & Jerry’s, an­nounced its own “bet­ter for you” ice cream called Cul­ture Repub­lick, as con­sumers con­tinue to seek out healthy-ish frozen desserts. The 400500 calo­rie tubs con­tain no ar­ti­fi­cial sweet­en­ers and have 3-bil­lion live ac­tive cul­tures. Flavours in­clude milk and honey, turmeric chai and cin­na­mon, and pis­ta­chio and caramel.

3. Mr Price CEO to re­tire

Mr Price CEO Stu­art Bird will be suc­ceeded by CFO Mark Blair on Jan­uary 1, the re­tailer said this week. Bird has had a 25-year ca­reer with the re­tail group and plans to re­tire. Chair Nigel Payne said in the state­ment that over the eight years of Bird’s lead­er­ship, earn­ings had grown at a com­pound rate of 18.8%. Blair has been Mr Price’s CFO since 2007.

4. Star­bucks’ Euro­pean shake-up

Af­ter years of slow­ing sales, Star­bucks is re­struc­tur­ing its Euro­pean op­er­a­tions. The Seat­tle-based cof­fee chain is sell­ing 83 com­pany-owned stores in France, the Nether­lands, Bel­gium and Lux­em­bourg to its part­ner, Alsea. Star­bucks also plans to close of­fices in Am­s­ter­dam and con­sol­i­date its Euro­pean head­quar­ters in Lon­don.

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