ESM caught up with Shopping Basket chief executive Santiago del Solar at the recent EuroShop exhibition in Düsseldorf.
Celebrating its 15th anniversary this year, Barcelona-based Shopping Basket is a leading designer, manufacturer and producer of handbaskets, rolling baskets and shopping carts for the grocery industry.
With a presence in more than 50 countries across Europe, the Americas, Asia and Africa, the company prides itself on its attention to quality and durability, as well as its commitment to working closely with its clients to determine the exact needs of modern retailers.
“We believe in answering our clients’ needs quickly and being responsive to their requests,” Santiago del Solar, Shopping Basket’s CEO, tells ESM. “We are proud that all of our new products have been developed in collaboration with our clients.”
We spoke to del Solar and his team at the recent EuroShop exhibition in Düsseldorf, where the company was showcasing three innovations, in particular – Match, the largest horizontal rolling basket in its range, with an 86-litre capacity; UP.80, its best-selling, lightweight urban cart, for proximity stores; and ReBasket, a novel innovation for click-and-collect service providers – as well as its broad range of baskets and trolleys.
“The ReBasket is a replacement for the regular plastic bag, which is often used in click-and-collect,” says del Solar. “It’s a ‘circular’ product, in that, once it is used, it can be returned and used again and again. It helps to change the customer mindset.”
Pride In Plastic
Much of Shopping Basket’s portfolio is developed from plastic, which may not seem like the most eco-friendly choice, but, in fact, the opposite is true.
“Plastic can be used and re-used numerous times, and can be moulded at a temperature of just over 100 degrees,” says del Solar. “We regularly have conversations with our clients as to whether they would like to use virgin plastic in their baskets or recycled plastic. We need to offer a balance, with solutions that fit the changing needs of the market.”
While Shopping Basket is aiming to develop a fully circular operating model – wherein old baskets would be returned and remoulded into new equipment – this may be a few years away, he admits.
“Circularity is our goal, and with more funds to support environmental initiatives coming in Europe, there will be an opportunity to invest in the infrastructure needed to achieve this,” del Solar says. “It’s not easy, but it’s something we would like to work on alongside public authorities.”
A Changing Industry
As well as working alongside retailers, Shopping Basket holds regular internal meetings to determine what retailers are going to look for in the future, as well as meeting their demands in the present.
“We already have a wide range of products that can meet most client needs,” del Solar explains. “We have brainstorming sessions on a weekly basis to discuss the demands of retailers around the world, and where we need to invest our next euro.”
ReBasket, which was developed to meet the demands of retailers during the COVID-19 pandemic, is an example of how the company is seeking to take the next step.
“Today, the world is changing, not just every two or three years – it’s changing every three months,” says del Solar. “That means we need to be proactive, rather than reactive. Through good contact with our clients, and being able to anticipate what they need, we will be in a position to succeed.”
For more information, visit www.sbshoppingbasket.com.