By George Lampiris
Greek supermarkets have been in a state of flux lately, where in addition to the intense mobility that appears at the level of investigating possible acquisitions and mergers, they are also called upon to manage the factor called energy costs.
At this time, energy costs are four times higher for all supermarket chains, but also for all companies operating in the market, whether they are in the manufacturing sector or in the retail sector.
One of the main cost factors is electricity for organized retail
It should be noted that for supermarkets the electricity bill is the main inelastic cost factor, due to the refrigerants they maintain in all their stores and warehouses, currently significantly affecting the profit lines of these companies.
As a top executive of a supermarket chain, with Greek interests with a perfectly healthy balance sheet, a turnover of around 500 million euros and without a loan burden with a network of stores numbering around 180 points nationwide, while the electricity bill for the whole of 2021 rose at 6 million euros, for this year it is estimated that it will reach 26 million euros in the whole year, at least with the data so far.
Waiting for government energy subsidy initiatives
The same person even stated that out of all the stores, 11 of them have their own production of electricity from photovoltaics, a production which is offset by the cost of electricity paid by the specific chain to PPC.
Asked what moves his company will make and whether it intends to invest further in alternative energy sources for its own production, he points out that the company is currently on hold, waiting for government announcements to subsidize energy costs due to the special circumstances prevail in connection with the war in Ukraine.
200% increase in costs for supermarkets with a turnover of 1.3 billion and 280 stores – Further increase by 20% after the war in Ukraine
An executive of another supermarket group also of Greek interests with a turnover of around 1.3 billion euros, which operates with a network of 280 stores in both retail and wholesale with Cash & Carry points, states that the total electricity bill increased by 200% in during 2021. More specifically, the chain started with a 100% increase in energy costs and by the end of the year the costs increased by up to 200%. He adds that in recent days and during the war in Ukraine, there has been an additional increase in electricity costs to levels above 20%. “While we believed that in the second half of 2022 there would be a de-escalation of costs, as this had become known to us, in the end this does not seem to be the case.”