Belgian Foodmaker is dreaming big: the healthy fast food chain unveiled a new store concept with which it wants to test its potential on Europe's major shopping streets. Moreover, CEO Lieven Vanlommel has concluded deals with supermarket chains Delhaize and Monoprix.
High street strategy
The opening of a 500 sqm store in Belgium's busiest shopping street, the Meir in Antwerp, allows the chain to test a High Street strategy, from which the chain wants to draw conclusions that should lead to conquering the most important shopping streets in Europe. "It is risky, given the high rents and our low prices, but we believe we can reach the necessary volumes to make it work. That should enable our European growth strategy focusing on the most important shoping streets in Europe", the CEO says.
Foodmaker wants to double its turnover in 2019, drawing not only on its own stores in shopping streets, but also from shops-in-shop in supermarkets. Belgian Delhaize, which has just announced a new concept 'Fresh Atelier' based on convenience and experience, has agreed to welcoming Foodmakers in 25 supermarkets with that new concept. "This is more than expected, and this collaboration enables us to expand our reach and raise our volumes, which in turn is necessary to make quality products with a positive profit margin." Monoprix will also give the chain room for shops-in-shop in up to twenty French stores, seeing now successful the current pilot stores in a few Belgian supermarkets are.
The new Foodmaker store in Antwerp is based on experience (even featuring events with cooking lessons) and claims to be a quiet oasis in the hasty world around it. The first floor offers lots of green and an exquisite view on the beautiful shopping street that is the Meir, while the ground floor has a to go corner at the entrance and a main salad bar, wrap bar and sandwich bar. There will also be a dessert bar with sugar-free and vegan options. "Existing restaurants on this street offer mostly hamburgers and the like, so we hope to bring something unexpected", Vanlommel says.