Despar Italia ended 2017 with a 3% growth in turnover to €3.38 billion, continuing the positive trend from the past two years.
The results place the retailer among the top 10 players in Italy’s grocery retail sector. The country is the third biggest international market for Spar.
One of the factors that contributed to the positive performance, according to the retailer, was the opening of 56 new stores last year, taking the total to 1,215 outlets, representing a 4.8% growth year on year.
Despar Italia invested €80 million in 2017, a figure that includes new stores, warehouses, logistics infrastructure and the restyling of existing supermarkets.
New And Restyled Products
Overall, the share of private-label products is increasing, accounting for 18.6% of sales and expected to exceed 19% in 2018.
Last year, 324 new products were launched, mainly in the organic, vegan, and free-from segments, as well as regional specialities, while 202 products were restyled. An additional 280 items will be introduced in 2018, mainly in the premium, healthy and organic segments.
According to director general Lucio Fochesato, more than 200 products were updated to align with customer requests, while palm oil was eliminated from 175 products.
Despar Italia is increasingly focusing on medium-sized stores, under 2,500 square metres, chairman Paul Klotz told a national convention, according to daily Il Sole 24 Ore. The aim, he added, was to enhance the loyal relationship with customers and local small and medium-sized producers. He also announced that the retailer will open around 50 new stores in 2018, investing €50 million.
Despar Italia is a consortium consisting of six associated companies (Aspiag Service, Ergon, Fiorino, Maiora, L’Alco Grandi Magazzini and SCS) operating stores in 12 Italian regions under the Despar, Eurospar and Interspar banners.
The operators of the Despar business in northern Italy, Aspiag Service, reported a 4.5% growth in turnover to €2.16 billion in 2017.
© 2018 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