Health and Safety Measures
In all SPAR stores, except SPAR Express outlets, thermographic cameras have been installed at the entrance to perform body temperature checks of customers entering the stores, thereby helping prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Already in an early stage of the coronavirus outbreak, SPAR Oman implemented a series of safety measures instore. In addition to social distancing markings on the floor and posters with COVID-19 conduct signs, shopping trolleys are sanitised after every single use before handed to the customer. All retail colleagues have their body temperature checked upon entering the store and wear protective equipment like face masks and gloves. Suppliers visiting the stores also have to undergo a body temperature check before being allowed into the store and the back-office area.
Opening Hours and Online Shopping
SPAR currently operates 23 stores in Oman and five of these are located in Muttrah, a district in the Muscat province, an area that is in lockdown. All SPAR Supermarkets in the country have kept their usual opening hours although those located in locked-down areas have extended their opening hours to ensure that all customers can do grocery shopping safely. For customers unable or unwilling to leave their house, or possibly need to do grocery shopping for others, SPAR Oman introduced an online shopping platform at an early stage of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Maintaining Product Supply
In the first weeks of the outbreak in March, SPAR Oman, like many other SPAR partners worldwide, experienced panic buying but ensured continuous supply of products. Reassurances that there are sufficient stocks levels, negating the need for panic buying, was an early communication. Ongoing messaging via social media channels keeps customers fully updated about SPAR’s responsiveness in Oman.
Ramadan promotion plans must be approved in advance by the relevant authorities and this has been very difficult due to the lockdown. Those customers who are taking advantage of the longer opening hours to facilitate social distancing have capitalised on the limited promotional offers which were authorised despite the challenging times.
Source: SPAR Oman
About SPAR Oman
The licence for SPAR in Oman was granted in 2014 to Khimji Ramdas, a US$1 billion Distribution Company. Khimji Ramdas has been operational since 1870 and is a leading business conglomerate in Oman. The group has diversiﬁed, now having interests in trading, distribution, retailing, training, restaurants and manufacturing, with an annual turnover of more than $750 million.