News from the Netherlands

Date : 22 October 2019

Sligro reports a 2.3% sales growth for Q3 2019, while Ekoplaza takes over sustainable supermarket Marqt. Separately, Jumbo rebrands its six Agrimarkt stores and Superunie expands its baby private label range.

Jumbo to renovate and rebrand Agrimarkt Stores

Jumbo has announced it will renovate and rebrand the six Agrimarkt stores it purchased earlier in 2019. The stores will be closed after the 31 October 2019 and will receive a “fresh, contemporary Jumbo look”, while preserving the “local character” of the stores as much as possible.

As part of the rebranding, Jumbo said it will convert three stores to the Jumbo supermarket format and one store to the Jumbo Foodmarkt outlet. The other two stores are located near to existing Jumbo stores and so will be sold to Lidl.

Sligro reports 2.3% sales growth for Q3 2019

Meanwhile, Sligro has posted its Q3 2019 results, reporting a sales increase by 2.3% to €605m (US$674m). However, the group reported a decrease in sales in the Netherlands by 3.2%, on an organic basis. This, it said, was partially offset by a 4.7% increase in sales across Belgium.

Sligro said the results were affected by the ongoing transition process, which it expects to impact sales in 2020. The retailer said it also expects profits to be impacted by ongoing “large, strategic projects”.

Ekoplaza to take over Marqt

In other news, sustainable supermarket Marqt has been taken over by competitor Ekoplaza. Since its launch in 2008, Marqt has not made a profit. In July 2019, the retailer announced that its two largest stores, in Amsterdam and The Hague, would close and be reopened as Albert Heijn stores.

As part of the takeover, Ekoplaza said it will close almost half of the Marqt stores to a “healthy basis of around ten to twelve profitable stores”. However, Marqt and Ekoplaza stores will both continue to operate in their current forms. Marqt will focus on smaller stores and online delivery.

A majority of shareholders have entered into an agreement with Ekoplaza’s parent company, Udea. A “formal ratification” of the deal has been requested for the remaining shareholders to sign.

Superunie expands its baby private label range

Elsewhere in the country, Superunie has expanded its Bonbébé range to include non-food products, including diapers, wipes and care products. The group has also added its Bumblies products to the Bonbébé range. The line currently consists of juice, fruit snacks and meal pots, among others.

Superunie is also improving the quality of products and making the packaging more sustainable. The diapers packaging is thinner, and the care product bottles are now made from recycled plastic. These changes have contributed to a reduction of approximately 5,000 kg of plastic annually and 70% less CO2 emissions.

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