Netherlands-based wholesaler Sligro Food Group has announced that it has reached agreement on a 'strategic partnership' with Heineken Nederland B.V., which will see the former process, store and deliver beer and cider orders placed by the Dutch hospitality sector.
The partnership is expected to be finalised this autumn, and it has been engineered as a long-term agreement, initially for a period of 15 years.
In a statement, Sligro Food Group said that the move will create 'a one-stop shop for all beverage, food and non-food orders for hospitality-sector customers'. The partnership will mean that Sligro is now Heineken's number-one partner for beer and cider distribution in the Dutch market. Not included in the agreement, however, is the delivery of tank beer, which will continue to be managed by Heineken itself.
In addition, the partnership will also see Heineken sell the wholesale operations of its other food and non-food ranges, including soft drinks, waters, spirits, wines, tea and coffee, to Sligro – a move that will boost the latter's sales by around €150 million.
“It’s fantastic that two leading players in the foodservice market are willing to reach out to one another in this way," said Koen Slippens, Sligro Food Group's chief executive. "This is a significant, strategic step for both organisations, and one in which we are clearly opting for quality and maximum service to our customers.
"This proposed partnership is made all the more exciting for all stakeholders by the incidental benefit of efficiency improvements and upselling opportunities,” Slippens said.
Heineken Nederland currently operates 13 distribution centres across the Netherlands, while Sligro has eight delivery-service outlets and three cash-and-carry outlets, which also supply the Dutch market. With the completion of the transaction this autumn, Sligro will be responsible for the majority of Heineken's logistics operations.
"As a result of this partnership, Heineken Netherlands will be in a position to focus on its core competencies: brewing, packaging, selling and building beer and cider brands, and will give us a market lead," said Pascal Gillet, managing director of Heineken Nederland. "As a family business like us, Sligro is a good partner in this area, too.”
© 2017 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up for ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.