Eurotorg, Belarus' largest retailer, has posted a 10.6% increase in net retail sales in the fourth quarter of its financial year.
The chain, which operates 927 stores in various formats across the country, saw full-year net retail sales increase 8.7% YoY to BYN 4,804 million.
Eurotorg CEO Andrei Zubkou said he was confident that the retailer "successfully dealt with all of the challenges that confronted us. We ensured business continuity and focused on developing the services that are most crucial to our customers."
Eurotorg followed the general trend across Europe of growth in proximity retailing, with convenience stores accounting for 52.2% of the firm's total net retail sales in 2020, up 3.0% year-on-year.
It also benefited greatly from increased demand for online delivery, with its e-commerce business generating 3.8 million orders and revenue of BYN 286.6 million in 2020, an increase of 31.0% year-on-year.
On the retailer's new stores, Zubkou added, "The fourth quarter was for us the most active in terms of store openings, with 32 new grocery stores added during the period."
Overall in 2020, the company added 73 new grocery stores, 63 of which were convenience format, and closed 16 stores. As a result, net openings in 2020 totalled 57. The average selling space of newly opened stores was 268 square metres.
The group also expanded its discounter formats, reaching 291 soft discounters under the Hit! banner, and adding several stores under its hard discount banner, Groshyk.
The retailer's asset-light expansion strategy dictated that 31 of the 32 new stores added in Q4 of 2020 were opened on leased premises, rather than company-owned real-estate.
Zubkou hopes that the positive trends will continue for the company, saying that "customers appreciate and keep choosing our stores and e-commerce service. We will do our best to continue Eurotorg’s robust performance in 2021."
© 2021 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Conor Farrelly. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.