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 continued to grow in 2019, thanks to the gradual recovery of the economy and of consumer confidence, as well as the full reactivation and reorganisation of all the former Marinopoulos outlets by Sklavenitis. Significant investments in outlets and logistics should support growth in the upcoming years, although the COVID-19 epidemic may cause disruptions. Several acquisitions of smaller local chains were carried on in by bigger players 2019.
Traditional grocery retailers continued to represent a substantial proportion of grocery sales in Greece, although they are expected to keep suffering the 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. Furthermore, demand for premium-quality food and drink is expected to keep growing in 2020, together with the number of shops offering Greek, organic and/or gourmet products.
Market share
In 2019, the Greek supermarkets chain Sklavenitis dominated the market, thanks to the acquisition and reactivation of a consistent part of the former Marinopoulos network (after the latter’s partnership with the French chain Carrefour came to an end). 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 Alfa-Beta Vassilopoulos (Euromonitor).
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: June 2022

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