Belgian retailer Colruyt Group is increasing the capital of its premium chain CRU by twenty million euros. Its four fresh markets are loss-making, but the retailer continues to believe in its potential.
CRU, the premium chain of “experience markets” that is committed to high-quality fresh, local and artisan products, made a loss of 5.2 million euros on sales of 24 million last financial year. It will receive an additional twenty million euros in fresh capital, which is “proof of our strong belief in CRU,” Colruyt spokeswoman Silja Decock told business newspaper De Tijd.
The chain, which has branches in Antwerp, Ghent, Overijse and – since last year – Dilbeek, can still become successful if given more time, according to Colruyt. The retailer is betting on more efficient operations, including by optimising staffing levels and cutting back on operating hours in some departments. Expansion should spread fixed costs over more branches. In an interview with RetailDetail last year, business unit manager Jo Spiegeleer said he saw potential for ten to twelve outlets. According to him, CRU is not far from profitability at the level of operations and production.