As Bon Preu and Coviran announce full year results, Mercadona and Grupo Uvesco discuss innovation, we round up news from Spain.
Mercadona: Portugal is perfect place to test format
After a long time discussing the potential internationalisation of its format, Mercadona finally announced it was to enter Portugal in Q2 2016. Discussing the first step outside Spain, its president, Juan Roig, said that the market is a perfect place to start given the similarities between the two markets, versus entering another country like France and Italy. Roig also explained how logistically it made sense to enter Portugal given its ability to meet stores’ deliveries from its existing warehousing.
However, it appears that the Portuguese market entry is likely to be a first step in Mercadona’s expansion. The retailer’s first co-innovation centre outside Spain, which will open in Matosinhos, will help it to learn about shoppers outside its home market for the first time.
Covirán enjoys good growth in 2016
Covirán has announced full year 2016 results saying that its turnover rose 4% to €660m, while sales through Covirán branded stores rose by the same figure to €1.26 bn. The results were aided by a 1% increase in selling space, but driven by new and existing shoppers spending more. By market, Covirán said it generated €1.154 bn in Spain, through 2,550 stores, and €106m in Portugal, from 330 stores. In 2016, Covirán said it and its associates invested €19m to expand its presence, upgrade stores and its technology and in the addition of a new distribution centre.
Looking to the future, the co-operative’s chief executive, Luis Osuna, said that it was focused on achieving gross sales of €1.5 bn in 2020. To help achieve this target Osuna said it was looking to launch online, potentially by the end of 2018, and to enter Morocco in 2019. To enable it to test the potential for its brand in Morocco, Osuna said it would establish two trial stores in either Q4 2016 or Q1 2017. Covirán said it saw more opportunity for its brand in north Africa than it did in other European countries.
Bon Preu FY2016: sales rise by 9.2%
Bon Preu has said sales rose 9.2% to €1.077 bn across its operations in 2016. It said sales growth was across all its operations, both its Bon Preu and Esclat banners, its forecourts and online. The retailer said sales growth was underpinned by its continued investment in its business, with it investing €103m in 2016 to add three Esclat hypermarkets, four Bon Preu supermarkets and the renovation of an Esclat store. At the end of the financial year Bon Preu said it operated 212 stores in Catalonia: 122 Bon Preu supermarkets, 47 Esclat hypermarkets, 40 petrol forecourts and three Iquodrive click and collect points.
Looking ahead to 2017, Bon Preu said it was aiming to generate a turnover of €1.2 bn. The growth target will again be underpinned by new store openings, with the retailer set to increase its investment for the year to €140m.
BM Supermercados enables contactless payments
BM Supermercados, part of Grupo Uvesco, has rolled out contactless payment in all its stores. The retailer said the step will help it to further its digital initiatives. The in-store solution will allow shoppers to pay with bank cards or their mobile phones. BM Supermercados began the digitisation of its offer in 2015, with the launch of its online store, a process that has since seen it now initiate contactless payment and will in future see it introduce wifi in-store and an app.