Just like Colruyt, Jumbo is planning to use the lowest prices on the market



The Dutch family group has selected a dozen locations to open its first supermarkets in Belgium.

Jumbo concretises his ambitions in Belgium. Number two on the Dutch distribution market behind Ahold Delhaize

, the supermarket chain based in Veghel (North Brabant) announced yesterday that contracts for its first locations in Belgium have been signed.

"These are a dozen sites that have been selected", simply referred to a spokesperson for Jumbo. But neither the location of these future locations nor the opening date of these stores are specified. The Belgian Jumbo project took shape last March when the Dutch supermarket chain founded its Jumbo Belgium SPRL with its head office in Antwerp.

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A shake-up for the sector, Jumbo takes the next step after the appointment of Peter Isaac last month as Managing Director of Jumbo Belgium. The leader takes over his duties on September 1st responsible for setting up the organization in Belgium within the Jumbo Belgium entity. Professionals in the sector, Peter Isaac spent 14 years of his career at Lidl, particularly in the Board of Directors as COO.

This business card confirms the positioning of Jumbo in the lowest price segment. "Every Day Low Price", according to the formula used by the Brabant group to describe its commercial strategy on its website.

Jumbo has flown away in ten years

The Jumbo group, founded in 1921 by the van Eerd family, is still led by one of his descendants, Frits van Eerd, who has been developing for more than a decade. Turnover rose from 972 million euros in 2006 to 7 billion euros last year. An important change, mainly realized through mergers and acquisitions.

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With the acquisition of the Dutch supermarket chains Super de Boer in 2009 and C1000 in 2012, it could become a competitor of the inevitable Ahold. Insatiable, the Dutch family group that was created 95 years ago was re-illustrated last March acquisition of 79 supermarkets from the EMTE Holding Group.

But it also diversified into catering in 2016 by buying the restaurant chain "La Place" from the department store chain V & D, which went bankrupt. These 92 restaurants reported a turnover of 123.6 million euros in 2017.

The success of 584 Jumbo stores continues unabated. Following a sales increase of 5% in 2017, the first half of the current fiscal year ended with a further increase of 3.9% to 3.9 billion euros, as released yesterday by Jumbo in a statement. All these versions have enabled the Brabant distributor to maintain a market share of 19.5% in the Netherlands, compared with 35% for its rival Ahold Delhaize.

In addition, the Brabant company does not lag behind in the field of online sales. some 200 employees, technicians and computer specialists, were recruited to accelerate the growth of online business income. These, which have already increased by 100% between 2016 and 2017, were again valued by two thirds in the first half of 2018.

Colruyt sees red

This was the case in Belgium of a confirmed actor of distribution after the success of the 37 supermarkets of Albert Heijn, is ominous for the competition. Colruyt

, whose strategy constantly strives for the lowest prices, probably has something to do with white hair.

The rivalry between the two family groups can become a ruthless price war. Colruyt CFO Marc Hoffman recently confirmed that the strategy that promises to use the lowest priceswould remain relevant in the event that Jumbo settles in Belgium.


The arrival of Jumbo on our market is a bigger challenge for Colruyt than that of Albert Heijn a few years ago. Colruyt will most likely feel the effects of this new presence.

Gino Van Ossel

Marketing professor at the Belgian Vlerick Business School

According to him "Ahold Delhaize and Carrefour will not escape stiffer competition, but this will have no effect on the stock prices of these groups of foreign origin for which Belgium remains a small market".

On the contrary, the share price of Colruyt

is sensitive to Dutch news, as was the case in July last year. A 5% decline in inventory was the result of a report from an analyst predicting a decline in profit as a result of the planned opening of the supermarket in 2019 by Jumbo.

In the opinion of observers, Jumbo would throw away several steps ahead of his competitor. For example, the distributor who fights abroad in the Netherlands will benefit from the lower prices that are applied. With regard to the assortment, that of Dutch is much larger than Colruyt who, for price reasons, offers a number of articles that are limited to the consumer. Between the price of products and the variety of items, the customer only has to choose.


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