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Migros in Switzerland has reported steady sales growth in 2017,  driven in part by its strong online sales.

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Migros in Switzerland has reported steady sales growth in 2017,  driven in part by its strong online sales.

Sales hit CHF 28bn (€23.9bn)

Overall sales increased by 1% to CHF 28bn (€23.9bn). Domestically, sales grew by 0.9%, increasing to CHF 23.5bn (€20.1bn). However, international sales declined slightly by 0.1% to CHF 1.77bn (€1.5bn). The cooperatives declined slightly to CHF 15.6bn (€13.3bn), driven by an overall sales decrease amongst private label ranges as well as declining sales at Globus, Interio and Office World Group.

Specialist formats and online performed well

Online sales at Migros grew by 5.1%, reaching CHF 1.95bn (€1.7bn). This meant that growth accelerated in 2017, as in 2016 it grew by 3.5%.  Sales at Denner, its discount banner, grew by 3.1% and Tegut, its German supermarket chain grew by 3.7%. Migrol saw sales increase by 9.3% and Migrolino, its convenience banner saw sales grow by 11.3%. The online stores of these specialist formats did particularly well, with sales growing by 25%. Shoppers are increasing the number of channels used to shop, reflected in the strong growth of the online businesses.

Norwegian discounter, REMA 1000, has announced plans to build a new distribution centre (DC) in Stavanger, Norway.

6,000 products

The new DC, which is due for completion in Q1 2018, will supply all stores in southwestern Norway with 6,000 products from ambient, fresh and frozen categories. The facility will be semi-automated, with a total capacity of 55,000 trays and 14,500 pallets.

Picking to store layouts

REMA 1000 has chosen automation specialist Witron Logistics to design, implement and maintain all systems at the semi-automated facility. Witron will use its Car Picking System (CPS) to optimise the routes and flow of cases being picked in the facility, so orders are picked in ways that suit the layouts of individual stores, helping to drive efficiency and reduce costs.

Voice and light picking technology

Manual picking at the DC is supported by voice and light picking technology, and the CPS is able to pick multiple orders simultaneously by one picker, saving time and energy. The dynamic nature of CPS means that parameters, such as sales volumes or seasonal changes, can be recorded and will determine whether an item will be picked from a storage pallet, layer trays or case trays.

To automate or not to automate?

Automation in the grocery supply chain has always been popular in continental Europe (check out these case studies featuring Migros and Eroski) but automated systems don’t tend to feature heavily in the supply chains of UK food and grocery retailers. Tesco’s facilities have become increasingly sophisticated however and the latest facilities in Crawley and Erith feature the latest automated picking technology from Dematic.

Spanish retailer, Mercadona, is to roll out an automated order picking system at its new warehouse in Gaudix, Spain, according to press reports.

Handling fresh produce

Mercadona has decided to install automation its Guadix warehouse which will be in operation at the end of 2013. The system will handle order picking for fresh produce and will be responsible for storing and retrieving of plastic crates, totes and trays. The retailer expects to benefit from increased speed and efficiency as well as higher customer satisfaction.

Island concept

Mercadona has given automation provider, Cimcorp, responsibility for the design and implementation of the system. It will feature an ‘order-processing-island’ concept. This island is designed to be self sufficient and can receipt in, store, pick and load goods onto transport units ready for store delivery. The entire material flow will be controlled by the provider’s warehouse management software.

Prior investment

This latest investment is not the first time Mercadona has opted for an automated solution for its’ warehouse operations. Read IGD’s case study which looks at Mercadona’s strategy, the automation used and the journey products take through its operation at Ciempozuelos, near Madrid.

Swiss retailer, Migros, was also able to increase its store service level through automating its case picking. Read this case study to find out the benefits Migros was able to realise through its automated system.


Co-operative retailer, Migros is the market leading food retailer in Switzerland and operates a relatively unique supply chain – each distribution centre is connected to a rail link. Discover Migros’ other supply chain priorities, network and latest updates in this two-page snapshot.

Driving up service levels and availability to shoppers is a key priority for both manufacturers and retailers. A fundamental factor in doing this is ensuring that the order picking process is both accurate and reliable. There is a growing trend, particularly among retailers, to do this by automating the case picking process. Although requiring significant capital investment, more and more retailers are finding it delivers significant operational and financial benefit. We look at one of the most recently installed operations serving 600 Migros stores in Switzerland.

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