The joint turnover for all groups using the Spar brand worldwide, was 31.9 billion euro in 2014, slightly below its 2013 number at 32.2 billion euro. Looking at the like-for-like turnover, the brand performed 1.2 % better.
10 new market areas
Spar has enlarged its geographical span even more in 2014 and added ten new market areas, including five countries and five new areas in Russia and China (where it was already present elsewhere). In total, Spar is now active in forty countries on four different continents.
Some 250 different organizations use the Spar formulas, geared towards both developed and emerging markets. The group's largest countries are Austria, South Africa and the United Kingdom, with turnover at 5.9 billion euro, 4.3 billion euro and 3.2 billion euro respectively. In Austria, turnover growth of 1.9 % was considerably lower than the 4.3 % increase from last year. South African growth reached 7.8 % in the local currency. The biggest growth areas were Russia and China, where it grew 33 and 25 % respectively, also calculated in local currency.
"We have added another five countries in Asia (Indonesia and India), Africa (Angola and Malawi) and Eastern Europe (Georgia) to the Spar network", departing managing director Gordon Campbell said. "Our growth strategy in new and emerging markets, while consolidating our position in the developed core markets, has paid off."
Spar Netherlands shrinks, minimal growth for Belgium
Just like in 2013, Belgium and the Netherlands had vastly different performances in 2014: Dutch Spar turnover dropped a lot again, down 3 % to 432 million euro. The country where Spar originates now ranks 17th in the overall Spar chart.
The Belgian branch performed much better, with turnover almost double that of the Netherlands (887 million euro), which gives it the 12th position. Belgian turnover growth did not even reach 1 % in 2014 however, a lot lower than the 4.6 % both Belgian Spar organizations managed in 2013.
Managing director Campbell leaves
Managing director Campbell was in charge of Spar International for 22 years and helped spur the enormous geographical reach Spar currently has. At the end of the year, he will take a step back, giving way to Tobias Wasmuth, currently Spar China's managing director and Spar International's head of marketing & retail.
"Over the last two decades, Gordon has made an extraordinary contribution to SPAR International and is a pioneer in the world of global retail. His commitment and leadership has seen SPAR undergo exceptional growth and expansion", Spar International's chairman, Leo Crawford, said in a press release.