Non-food discounter Action is facing problems restocking its stores. Due to delays in China and reduced activity in distribution centres, the discounter was not prepared for the rush after lockdown ended in several countries. As a result, shelves still sit empty in some stores.
The retailer confirmed its supply problems at the end of the coronavirus crisis on Dutch radio station BNR. Distribution centres in France , Germany and Poland operated at reduced capacity for weeks, if they were not closed altogether. As a result, they still had a large supply of obsolete items - such as Easter decorations - when shops in Belgium and France, among others, were suddenly allowed to reopen.
The non-food discounter was not prepared for such a rush upon the reopening either: "We were forced to pull the emergency break and then we had to restart at full speed. In Belgium and France huge queues formed in front of our stores", spokesperson Yvette Moll told BNR. The chain also noticed that consumers were still stocking up.
In addition, Action faces delays in delivery from China, albeit mostly for deliveries through intermediaries. In order to avoid empty shelves, the retailer is reviewing its logistics and reorganising its stocks. Sometimes French stores are even restocked from a Dutch warehouse, for example. Although available stocks vary considerably from store to store, shortages can reach up to 15 % of the assortment.