After a thorough period of renovation, the SPAR store in Olen, in the province of Antwerp has re-opened its doors. The 750m² convenience store has been fitted with the latest generation store design concept and is owned and operated by independent retailer, Cihan Gungor. At the opening reception, customers were welcomed with a serving of Belgian fries and beef stew.
Cihan comes from a family of retailers and previously ran a SPAR store in Eindhout together with his father. “I grew up in my family’s shop and know the SPAR principles through and through.” Cihan runs the business with his store manager Wendy, who has been with the family since 2009. “Wendy is as much the face of the business as I am. Together, we have the knowledge and experience needed to run the store.”
SPAR Olen now has a fresh and modern look-and-feel. The key departments are the fresh food sections, which have been designed in the style of a market. “Our fresh food departments are at the front of the store, making shopping easier for our regular customers and passers-by who are often in a hurry,” said Cihan. Customers can draw inspiration from the digital screens instore, which display recipes, meal suggestions and product information.
In the week after re-opening, SPAR Olen’s sales had doubled. It’s expected that the long-term growth will be up by about 30%.
The village of Wervik is close to the French border and right in the centre of the town, the brand-new SPAR store of 789m² is bringing a new standard of grocery retail to locals.
The shop is run by independent SPAR retailers Delphine Devadder and Bruno Vervaecke. “Our primary aim,” said Bruno, “is to provide the best possible service to all residents of Wervik.”
Bruno has many years of experience as an independent retailer having previously operated two SPAR stores in Ostend and Halle, while Delphine has followed an extensive two-year training course with Colruyt Group, helping her steer the new store in the right direction.
SPAR Wervik’s fresh departments have a real market feel and upon entering the store, customers are welcomed by the inviting scent of freshly baked bread and pastries. At the delicatessen counter, a wide choice of home-made dishes can be found as well as a varied selection of cheese and cold cuts. A highly skilled butcher is also onsite, serving customers their favourite cuts of meat.
Colruyt Group recently introduced a new electronic price labelling system, which is being trialled in SPAR Wervik. Thanks to the new digital labels, paper usage has been significantly reduced and store employees no longer have to change price tags manually – freeing up time to focus on core tasks in the shop. In time, the new system will be made available to more SPAR stores in Belgium.
Source: SPAR Belgium partner Colruyt
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About SPAR Belgium
SPAR was introduced to Belgium in 1947, representing the first step in the international development of SPAR. SPAR licences have been granted to SPAR Retail (part of the Colruyt Group) and SPAR Lambrechts NV.
SPAR Retail accounts for over 80% of total SPAR sales generated through a combination of company owned and independently operated stores. SPAR Lambrechts is the second partner supporting independent retailers. SPAR Retail operates two formats: SPAR and EUROSPAR, while Lambrechts focuses on serving customers with the SPAR and SPAR Express formats.