BAKU, Azerbaijan, Jan. 18
By Tamilla Mammadova – Trend:
Over the past two years, Georgian retailer Nikora has been actively developing its product range through its own brand and imports, said David Urushadze, the director of the company, Trend reports via the EastFruit portal.
"We try to offer our customers an exclusive assortment that can be purchased only at Nikora. A wide product line requires a large format so all new stores have, on average, 1.5 times more area. We are moving towards enlargement, but we will not leave small formats. We are also actively developing the discounter format under the Libre brand. Even though the project is still very young, it is very popular with buyers. Almost one-third of all our stores operate in this format and we intend to develop it further. In all formats, except for kiosks, there is a fruit and vegetable section," he said.
According to Usushazde, Georgian modern retail is growing very quickly by an average of 28-30 percent per year gradually replacing traditional retail of small non-brand stores. This trend is relevant not only in large cities but also in regions and villages. Despite the economic crisis, the number of buyers from the chains is growing.
"In the development process, we pay great attention to both fresh fruits and vegetables and ready-to-eat products prepared in a supermarket. The restrictions associated with the pandemic have had an extremely negative impact on the sales of cooked foods as many people started working from home and, accordingly, began to cook their own food. Yet, sales of fresh vegetables and fruits, which were previously bought at the bazaar, increased significantly," he said.
As he noted, on average, the share of the produce department in total sales reaches 8 percent during the year.
"We believe that the growth potential still exists. We think that within two years this figure will reach 12 percent on average across the network. We also continue to develop dynamically and, according to our plans, in 2021, Nikora Trade will increase turnover by 30 percent due to 80 new stores, development of its own logistics infrastructure, and improvement of operational processes," Usushazde added.
The Nikora supermarket chain (Nikora Trade CJSC) is the largest chain in Georgia in terms of the number of grocery stores. The company has been operating on the market since 2000. Over the past 10 years, its number of stores has grown fivefold and currently has 330 outlets both in the capital city Tbilisi as well as in the regions.
The company operates in various formats under the brands Nikora Supermarket, Nikora XL (largest format), and Libre (discounter format). The company owns warehouses in Tbilisi, eastern and western Georgia, and has its own distribution fleet. Nikora Trade is part of the Nikora holding, which is a major player in the Georgian food market. It produces meat, fish, dairy and bakery products, and other food products as well as imports.
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