Greece flag Greece: Buying and Selling

The distribution network in Greece

Evolution of the Sector
According to Euromonitor, Greeks remain highly interested in price levels and general value offers, yet also opt for proximity, as a secondary way to save money. According to IELKA, the Greek Institute of Retail Consumer Goods, the economic crisis has brought a change in the dietary patterns of the Greeks, who are ordering out less and eating at home more. These shifts in consumer behaviour translated to changes in grocery store layouts, as packaged snacks and cold drinks became more easily available, while stores also increased their ready-to-eat food options. Greek consumers' limited purchasing ability forced them to cut down food spending. Food products in the market are becoming more diversified. Consumers are more open to diverse products, creating opportunities for new and foreign products.

Supermarkets are by far the largest modern grocery retail format in Greece but they are facing increased competition from the growing number of discounter outlets (Euromonitor). The market size of the supermarkets and grocery stores industry has declined 0.1% per year on average in value between 2017 and 2022. The sector’s revenues grew by 1.3% in 2022, reaching EUR 14.2 billion (IBISWorld).

Traditional grocery retailers represent a substantial proportion of grocery sales in Greece, although they are facing competition from modern grocery retailers, which can use their size and scale to offer bigger discounts and better promotional offers. Another trend is favouring more frequent visits to retail outlets with a smaller average spend per visit in local stores, prompting a shift towards convenience stores and smaller supermarkets. However, during the Covid-19 pandemic, more consumers did less frequent, but larger, shopping trips in order to minimise their risk of contagion (Euromonitor).

Furthermore, demand for premium-quality food and drink is expected to keep growing in 2022, together with the number of shops offering Greek, organic and/or gourmet products.

Market share
Sklavenitis and Vassilopoulos remained the leading players during 2021, accounting for close to half of the retail current value sales of all supermarkets (Euromonitor). The top five grocers, in terms of turnover, accounted for around EUR 7.9 billion in total, or approximately 75% of the grocery sector in 2020. The Greek supermarkets chain Sklavenitis continued to dominate the market with a turnover of EUR 3.15 billion and 31% market shares in 2020 (KPMG). Sklavenitis operates with the Sklavenitis and Chalkiadakis brands in supermarkets, and has an estimated half a million Greeks visiting its outlets each day. The second player is Koninklijke Ahold Delhaize NV‘s Alfa-Beta Vassilopoulos, with 19.9% market shares in 2020 (KPMG). Metro SA’s My Market and Diamantis Masoutis SA’s Masoutis had retail value shares of 13.1% and 8.7% respectively in 2020 (KPMG).

Greece has a highly fragmented market when it comes to independent traditional grocery retailers and small chains with a regional presence. Venetis, which increased his number of outlets, continued to lead the fragmented traditional grocery retailers channel in 2019, followed by Max Perry Chocolate.

Retail Sector Organisations
Federation of Greek Food Industry
Hellenic Retail Business Association
Research Institute of Retail Consumer Goods (IELKA)

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Latest Update: November 2022

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