The Private Label Issue – Sonae MC
As part of ESM's annual Private Label Issue, we spoke to Ana Amaral, private-label director at Sonae MC, operators of the Continente chain, about how the group is using a variety of sub-brands to tap into emerging niches. This article first appeared in ESM Issue 1 2021.
Portuguese retailer Continente, part of the Sonae MC retail group, has responded proactively to the challenges of the past year. As well as accelerating its online presence – online sales have grown by 80% over the past year – the group achieved the highest market share increase in its history, along with significant improvements in customer preference scores and brand metrics.
One of the driving forces behind the retailer’s growth has been its broadened private-label range, which has seen both new-product launches and packaging reformatting over the past few months, in response to consumer demand. As private-label director Ana Amaral explains, store brands have flourished during the pandemic, as consumers seek out products that offer both trusted quality and value for money.
“Private label has seen an increase in penetration because consumers recognised the value proposition – based on price, quality and variety – long before the pandemic started,” Amaral says. “The perception of private-label versus branded products has been shifting positively towards private label because retailers have placed it at the centre of their strategy.”
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