Auchan: five developments from the retailer in CEE

Date : 28 January 2021

Jon Wright

Head of Insight - RA EMEA

As Auchan sets out its plans for 2021 in Russia and embeds its multichannel strategy in Poland and Romania, we round up five developments from the retailer across central and Eastern Europe.

Auchan to focus on modernisation in Russia

According to reports in Finmarket, Auchan is not planning to open any stores in Russia in 2021. Instead, the retailer will focus on its current projects of modernising existing stores and improving operational efficiency. As part of this, it will look to evolve its assortment to increase the share of locally produced goods in its fresh offer, strengthen its range of healthy lifestyle products and improve its private lable offer too. The aim is to be able to launch a ‘completely new customer experience’ by 2022.

The investment in its offer will key to trying to stop or limit the continued fall in sales Auchan has been facing in Russia in recent years. The pandemic is likely to have affected Auchan negatively, with shoppers choosing to buy locally and, therefore, not travelling to its hypermarkets for food, while switching to online for non-grocery ranges.

Auchan teams up with food delivery platform foodpanda in Romania…

Auchan Retail Romania, the local unit of France's Auchan Retail, has signed an agreement with food service delivery platform foodpanda. Shoppers will be able to order products from Auchan stores through foodpanda’s online platform. Orders are then delivered to shoppers’ home by foodpanda’s operatives.

Under the partnership, the type of products that are available to order from the platform include dairy, meat, fish, fruits and vegetables, beverages amongst other categories. The service will be available initially in Brasov and Iasi, and is due to be expanded nationwide within the first half of 2021. Foodpanda Romania is part of Germany-based Delivery Hero Group which operates in more than 40 markets. In Romania, foodpanda is currently working with more than 6,000 restaurants in 38 cities.

…And begins upgrading Petrom forecourt stores…

Auchan and Petrom have continued opening forecourt stores following the previous announcement that Auchan would be increasing the expansion of MyAuchan convenience stores on Petrom’s forecourts. Between 2021 and 2024 the companies have said they will invest more than €50m to refurbish about 400 Petrom branded forecourt stores throughout the country. Auchan and Petrom said they are aiming to remodel about 100 forecourts annually over the next four years.

…While also adding Drive solution at 31 hypermarkets

Auchan has added Drive solutions at 31 of its 33 hypermarkets in the country. The service has been trialled at one of the retailer’s hypermarkets in Romania, with it now being rolled out to further stores following a positive response from shoppers. Shoppers place their orders online and will be able to pick them up after two hours. For collection they will park in a specially designated area in the car park, with orders placed directly into their cars in three minutes of arrival.

Auchan grows presence following initiative with BP in Poland

Auchan said it ended 2020 with three Easy Auchan stores in operation on BP forecourts in Poland. The new stores enable Auchan to trade on Sunday, with the sites open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Commenting on the new format, Auchan Poland’s chief executive, Gerard Gallet, said: “Cooperation with bp is a significant moment in the development of our network. The convenience segment is a promising sales channel in which we want to be present with our comprehensive offer.

Want to understand COVID-19's impact on sales in the region?

Subscribers can access our revised CEE channel forecasts 2020-22, which show the impact of COVID-19 on the region’s major countries and how this affects our channels' outlook.