Eurotorg, Belarus' biggest retailer, has reported a 14.3% increase in net retail sales in the third quarter of its financial year, as it continued its expansion into the convenience and discounter formats.
The group opened 19 new stores in the period and closed one, with all new grocery store openings in the quarter located in leased premises, in line with the group's asset light strategy.
As of 30 September, Eurotorg operates 1,005 grocery stores across 336 localities of Belarus.
Expansion Of Discounter Formats
It opened six new stores under the Hit! soft discounter brand, taking its number of stores under the banner to 315, while opening seven new outlets under the hard discounter Groshyk banner, which now boasts 53 outlets.
Two further outlets in the capital, Minsk, were refurbished under the Euroopt Prime banner, taking the total number of Euroopt Prime stores, which offer an extended range of premium and healthy-eating products, to four.
The group also continued the roll-out of its self-checkout (SCO) services, with more than 650 SCOs rolled out to 170 stores, as of 30 September.
Building on a strong first-half peformance, like-for-like sales increased by 2.5% in the quarter, with many of the shopping habits forged during the COVID-19 crisis remaining – average basket is up 11.1%, while like-for-like traffic is down 7.7%.
'Improving The Customer Experience'
“As well as continuous efforts to support growth, the company is working on improving the customer experience," Eurotorg CEO Andrei Zubkou said of the group's performance.
"We have opened several new stores under the Euroopt Prime banner in Minsk, where there is a demand for this format, and have also updated our loyalty programme. The next step is to extend the use of bonus points to our partners in the joint e-plus loyalty card programme. We believe that this will give a boost to Eurotorg’s ecosystem.”
For the first nine months of the year, net retail sales were up 12.0%, the group said.