Purchase alliance Core (consisting of Belgian Colruyt, Swiss Coop and Italian Conad) is to join forces with Alidis (German Edeka, Spanish Eroski and French Groupement des Mousquetaires) to form Europe's biggest purchase alliance.
Core-members join Alidis
The three Core members join the three already existing members of Alidis ("Alliance Internationale de Distributeurs") in an alliance whose annual turnover reaches 140 billion Euro, making Alidis the most important alliance of independent retailers in Europe. Of course, in such a high-profile merger, an important condition is Europe's competition authorities agreeing to the plans.
Frans Colruyt, CEO of the eponymous Belgian retail chain, expects the merger to result in an even better pricing policy, both for international brands as for private label. He also hopes the step will induce more innovation and variation on the producers' side, as they will now be catering for a market of no less than eight countries: Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Spain and Switzerland.
In itself, the merger plan is not a surprise: international alliances have been on the move since the dissolution of Coopernic (the three Core members plus Rewe and E.Leclerc) in 2013, because of the latter's definite choice to only focus on discounting.