Italian discounter MD has reported a strong year in terms of turnover and new store openings, despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The retailer ended the first half of the year with a 15.95% turnover growth on the same period in 2019, noting that this positive trend is also likely to be confirmed in the second half.
It also recorded a 10% growth in food sales, compared to an average growth of 4.5% for the discount channel.
Speaking to daily Il Sole 24 Ore, CEO Patrizio Podini said that the group's performance is even more significant in light of the fact that FMCG prices in the period from January to May fell by 0.5% compared to the same period in 2019.
MD has earmarked €250 million for investments in the period 2020-2021, mostly for the opening of 40 new format stores (32 direct and 10 affiliates), each boasting a sales area of between 1,500 and 2,000 square metres.
Despite the lockdown and the health emergency, the retailer opened 25 new stores last year, both directly owned and affiliated, taking its total to over 800.
In addition, the pandemic accelerated the group's digital sales. In the period January-May 2020, online sales of non-food products grew by 70% compared to the same period in 2019, while digital payments reached peaks of 80% to 90% during the lockdown period.
To cope with the pandemic, MD invested over €6 million (in the period to September 2020 for the safety of employees and customers.
MD is the second largest Italian-owned discounter and the third largest in terms of turnover, with a 16% share of the discount segment.
© 2021 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Branislav Pekic. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine