Wal-Mart Expands in Brazil
Sao Paulo, Brazil, Wal-Mart Stores, Brazil’s third-largest supermarket chain, opened its second supercenter in Sao Paulo in the last 12 months.. In all, the chain operates eight supercenters in Sao Paulo, the nation’s largest city, and 16 in the larger metropolitan area.
Panera Bread to Expand in California
Richmond Heights, Mo., Panera Bread announced a franchise agreement with Pangenera, LLC for expansion in California. The group plans to develop 15 bakery-cafes in San Mateo, Santa Cruz and Santa Clara counties by 2010. Panera Bread currently operates 773 units (243 company-owned and 530 franchised).
Chain Store Sales Fall in Latest Week
New York City, U.S. chain store sales fell 1% for the week ended May 28, compared to a 0.2% dip the previous week, according to a joint report from the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and UBS. Cooler weather slowed consumer purchases of seasonal goods, taking the index to its lowest reading in nine weeks, according to the report. Sales for the same week a year ago rose 3.1%, after a 3.7% increase the preceding week.
“With the industry facing a tough comparison in May 2005 against May 2004’s 5.7% increase and less-than-favorable weather, the industry performed reasonably well over the past four weeks,” said Michael Niemira, ICSC chief economist and director of research, in a statement.