Italy: expansion, sales growth

Date : 25 April 2018

As Crai and SPAR Italy announce results for 2017, two of Conad’s cooperatives announce expansion plans and Gruppo Pam acquires stores, we round up news from the country.

Conad cooperatives set out 2018 expansion plans

Two of Conad’s eight regional cooperatives have set out plans to open 58 stores in 2018. Conad Adriatico will invest €20m to open 36 stores, which will add 34,000 sq. m, which comes as part of its €115.37m 2017 – 2020 strategic development programme. Separately, Conad Centro Nord has committed to spending €190m between 2018 and 2020 to open 22 new stores and update a further 14.

Crai generated €6.2 bn in 2017

Crai saw revenues rise 5% in 2017, reaching €6.2 bn versus €5.9 bn in the previous year. New stores underpinned the revenue rise, with Crai adding 272 food-focused stores and 93 drugstores. The cooperative ended 2017 with more than 3,400 stores, with new formats Cuor di Crai, Crai Extra and Pellicano adding just over 100 between them. Looking ahead to 2018 Crai said ecommerce would be a focus, with the aim of enabling online orders to be fulfilled from 250 locations by the end of the year.

DESPAR Italy enjoys 3% rise in turnover

DESPAR Italy, which licenses the SPAR brand to regional partners in the country, saw sales rise 3% to €3.344 bn. This was underpinned by a 4.8% increase in the number of stores under the SPAR brand, while private label ranges were strong. In 2018 DESPAR is expecting to add 280 SKU’s under its own brand, mainly in the premium, health and organic categories, which should help sales of private label products rise by 3.5%. If performance is in line with expectations, private label will account for 19% of sales, versus 18.6% at the end of 2017. Store expansion will also continue. For example, DESPAR said its partner Ergon, which operates in Sicily, has added four stores in recent weeks.

Aspiag sees sales rise 4.5% in 2017

Aspiag, which operates SPAR stores under licence in northern Italy, said sales rose 4.5% in 2017 to €2.16 bn. The retailer added 21 stores and updated 10 more in 2017, investing more than €52m. Its expansion saw it enter new regions, which will continue in the short to medium term with a focus on the Emilia Romagna region. Its investment programme has seen it allocate €149m to opening new stores and improving existing sites.

Gruppo Pam acquires stores for discount banner

Gruppo Pam has bought 61 discount stores from Dico-Tuodi for €48m. Pam has said the stores will be rebranded to its own discount banner In’s Market. Following the rebranding process, which is estimated to take about a month and a half, Pam said it will operate more than 430 stores under In’s Market. In’s generated sales of €637m in its most recently reported year, from Pam’s total of €2.4 bn.