As Lidl looks back at its expansion in 2017, cooperative Covirán makes an acquisition and El Corte Inglés launches a chatbot, we round up news from Spain.
Lidl invested €110m in 2017
Lidl has said that it invested €110m on the opening of 30 stores in 2017. The stores have been spread all over the country, but included its first in a shopping centre in Spain, in the Islazul mall in Madrid. While some of the money was spent on adding new stores in areas where it previously did not operate, much was invested in extending existing sites or replacing old stores with larger premises nearby. The new stores had an average selling area of 1,400 sq. m, larger than previously, to enable Lidl to expand its offer, especially in fresh, which is estimated to represent more than a third of its total range.
Covirán buys Dusa
According to reports in infoRETAIL, cooperative Covirán has acquired Catalan-based Detallistas Unidos (Dusa). Dusa operates 90 stores in and around Barcelona, with the supply of these now being incorporated into Covirán’s operations. Dusa stores stock around 3,000 SKUs on an on-going basis, although this is flexible and rises at certain times of the year.
El Corte Inglés launches chatbot
Although not for its grocery channels, El Corte Inglés has expanded its digital skill and scale through the launch of a chatbot that provides online gift recommendations. Corti.Bot, which was produced in conjunction with Botslovers, provides shoppers with recommendations 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Corti.Bot is platformed on Facebook Messenger and, according to the retailer, achieved close to 200,000 interactions with users, with an average rate of recommendations of 2,000 products per hour.
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