Russian retailer Magnit has announced the opening of two further 'dark stores' in Moscow, to assist with the processing of online orders.
The stores are located in the Novogireevo and Koptevo districts, in the east and northwest of the city, respectively, and will facilitate express delivery within one hour, for orders placed on Magnit’s own delivery service as well as partners Delivery Club and Yandex.Eda.
“In February, we launched the first two dark stores in Moscow to see what impact this format will have on the e-commerce operational efficiency and sales," commented Florian Jansen, Magnit’s deputy CEO and executive director. "Today we see that the average ticket and service level in the pilot dark stores is higher than the average across the channel.
"We are pleased with the first results, therefore we have opened two more mini dark stores and still plan to bring their total number in Moscow up to 20 by the year end."
Each of the new stores has a surface area of around 430 square metres, and an assortment that includes around 8,000 SKUs. The assortment differs from a regular store – fresh products are given special focus, while this will soon be supplemented with a range of bakery and ready-to-eat products, Magnit said.
The stores also feature a minimal layout, with a video surveillance system used to monitor order picking. Access to the dark stores is granted only to Magnit’s employees as well as agents from the partnering delivery services.
Magnit, which recently announced the takeover of the Dixy chain, currently operates seven online delivery platforms, both independently and in cooperation with partners.
The company delivers around 9,500 orders per day, with the average basket size of an online order valued at RUB 1,400, which is close to four times higher than a typical purchase at one of the group's convenience stores, it said.