We round up news from SPAR International partners in Austria, Gran Canaria and Russia as they invest in their store network and information technology.
Austria: to open 20 new SPAR Express forecourt outlets
In Austria, SPAR has announced it will open 20 new SPAR Express forecourt outlets across the country, over the next 14 months. The retailer has redesigned the layout of the new stores, which places greater emphasis on fresh food. Eco-friendly cooling and lighting systems have also been installed to reduce the stores’ environmental footprint.
The first new format SPAR Express store featuring a fresh market area has been opened in Amstetten in Lower Austria. This makes it the 15th SPAR Express in Lower Austria, and the 51st store in association with forecourt operator, Doppler. The 80 sq. m store offers freshly baked bread and pastries, fruit, vegetables, flowers and coffee-to-go.
SPAR Express forecourt stores have seen their sales performance grow above the Austrian food market. Managing director of Spar Austria for Vienna, Lower Austria, and Northern Burgenland, Alois Huber, commented, “No other forecourt store in Austria offers a supermarket range at these prices as well as 24/7 service. The concept of Spar Express stores is unique and tailored to the needs of our customers. We fill the gap of shopping at supermarket prices outside of regular opening hours.”
Gran Canaria: opens two new stores…
The first new store was opened in the residential area Sansofé in October 2019. The 120 sq. m store has been given a modern and innovative store design with vertical refrigeration chambers and LED lighting. It features a large fresh produce section offering locally source products.
In November 2019, the retailer opened SPAR Polígono Residencial de Arinaga. The 100 sq. m store is in line with the new store concept with energy-efficient refrigeration and lighting systems installed. There is also a focus on local products in the fresh produce and deli sections and a in-store bakery offers freshly baked bread daily.
…and modernises two existing stores
SPAR Botánico, located in the tourist area of Maspalomas, was reopened in October 2019. It has a modern store design and layout and features energy efficient technologies. The 450 sq. m store has a large fresh produce section as well as bakery, deli and meat departments.
SPAR Balos, located in Vecindario in the Southeast of the island, was also reopened. It features a more convenient and spacious store layout with brighter interior. It has been open in the area for almost 15 years and is popular for its local produce and bakery offer.
Russia: focuses on information technology
At its ‘Information Technologies in Retail in 2030’ conference, SPAR Russia hosted a discussion of the main challenges and achievements in information technologies in the retail industry. The event was attended by partners from across the country, members of the Association of Independent Retailers of Russia and representatives of leading industry suppliers.
The two-day conference involved 140 delegates and speakers, who covered a variety of topics including global digitalisation, business analytics, cloud services, big data processing, relevant and effective ERP solutions, digital shelf space management, among others. Individual sessions dedicated to omni-channel marketing and loyalty programmes were also held.
Participants could share knowledge and tools for developing their businesses and find suppliers with expertise in new technologies. Several partners also presented their products, service and solutions to delegates. SPAR said the insights shared will help its partners “stay at the cutting-edge with next generation technologies”.
At the conference, SPAR Russia Partners discussed how the group would continue to invest in its brand by opening more store across the country. It said it will also invest into IT solutions and offer ecommerce in limited cities.