Understanding our operating environment
SPAR Switzerland is a relatively small player in the Swiss market and currently holds a 2.4% market share. The grocery market is dominated by Migros and Coop, which control close to 72%.
In addition, SPAR Switzerland faces a uniquely European dynamic: strong Swiss macroeconomics (the strength of the franc and stagnant inflation) and high Swiss consumer earnings result in many potential customers shopping across the border where they have greater buying power and where goods can be bought at significantly reduced prices and, in addition, free of value-added tax. The latest estimates are that cross-border food spend amounts to CHF9 billion annually.
SPAR Switzerland is committed to developing a deeper understanding of cross-border patterns to develop an effective response to this trend. In addition, we are engaging with SPAR ASPIAG to improve sourcing, quality, availability and cost in our system, by incorporating volumes from all of the countries they own, and developing a produce hub in Barcelona. SPAR Switzerland also focuses on local sourcing through Swiss suppliers of meat, fresh produce and dairy products to differentiate our offering from mainstream supermarket brands. An independent survey indicated that out of all the retailers in Switzerland, we support the highest number of independent dairies. Our stated intent is to develop the SPAR brand DNA to represent the most admired convenience food offering in the German-speaking part of Switzerland.