Retail in brief | Amazon, AS Watson, Zur Rose

Retail in brief | Amazon, AS Watson, Zur Rose

9 September 2020 - Deborah Wilkes

Amazon Launchpad has revealed its top sellers in the US, Watsons is entering the Middle East, and Zur Rose has launched a digital medicines assistant in Switzerland.

Amazon Launchpad reveals top sellers

Amazon Launchpad – the online retailer’s programme for startups and small businesses – has revealed that its top-selling category in the US is Health & Personal Care.

The top-selling US business in the category, added Amazon Launchpad, was the vitamins, minerals and supplements (VMS) specialist Smarter Nutrition. The G Fuel energy drinks company ranked second, followed by VMS company Innovix Labs.

Rankings are based on sales over the past 12 months in the US.

Amazon Launchpad said it had helped startups and small businesses launch tens of thousands of products across 30 categories in the US alone. Nearly 400 US-based startups and small businesses had exceeded USD1 million in annual sales in Amazon’s store since the programme was launched in 2015, it added, and nearly 40 had surpassed USD10 million in annual sales.

Watsons enters the Middle East

AS Watson Group plans to open 100 stores in the Middle East by the end of 2025 through a deal with local conglomerate Al-Futtaim.

The Asian health and beauty retailer said the deal was the first franchise agreement in its 180-year history, and its first venture in the Middle East.

The first Watsons store will open in Dubai Mall on 1 October 2020, together with an e-commerce portal at Watsons.ae, a mobile app called Watsons UAE and a Watsons loyalty programme. It will be followed in the fourth quarter of 2020 by stores in Dubai Festival City Center and The Mall of the Emirates.

The Watsons brand will enter Saudi Arabia in 2021.

Dominic Lai, AS Watson Group’s managing director, said the move would bring Watsons to the “beauty-savvy customers in the Middle East, which is one of the world’s fastest-growing markets for beauty products”.

Zur Rose and KPT launch Medi+

Online pharmacy Zur Rose and health insurer KPT have launched a digital medicines assistant called Medi+ in Switzerland.

Switzerland’s Zur Rose said Medi+ was designed to support patients in taking and managing their medicines.

KPT is the first health insurer to offer its patients a digital medicines assistant free-of-charge.

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