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Today, Mercadona - a 100% Spanish-owned, family-run chain of supermarkets - launched a New Efficient Store Model that will enhance and optimise the shopping experience for its “Bosses”, which is what the company calls its clients internally. To this end, the company plans to invest 180 million euros in refurbishing and renovating 125 stores throughout the country in 2017. The first two supermarkets to include this New Store Model are located in Puerto de Sagunto (Valencia) and in the municipality of Peligros (Granada).
65 suppliers have partaken in the construction of a more efficient, New Store Model, revitalising the atmosphere store design, which was started in 2000, and improving the distribution, decoration and arrangement of the different sections. The company has presented a fully renovated design in terms of new colours and materials, applied both to the outside access to the supermarket and the distribution of the different sections. It has decided on open spaces that favour natural lighting and warm colours separating the different sections, while using eco-efficient installations.
The New Store Model introduces novelties throughout all sections, all of which are designed to benefit the “Bosses”, the employees, the suppliers and society. For instance, a new double-glazed glass entrance that avoids gusts of air, specific shelves for fresh milk and refrigerated juices, a central gondola for specialised cosmetics and a new fish exhibit for shellfish, among others.
The new design seeks offering a better service to facilitate shopping, by expanding the fruit and vegetable aisles, introducing a new shopping cart model and two basket models that are much lighter and more ergonomic.
With the objective of facilitating the workforce’s daily tasks, the new model includes a number of different measures to improve ergonomics and eliminate over-exertion. Mercadona has collaborated with Valencia’s Institute of Biomechanics in the design of the new till units. In addition, the company has redesigned the common areas in order that the employees may be more comfortable at break time, and it has further included a better-equipped canteen and larger, more comfortable lockers.
Where the environment is concerned, measures have been taken to reduce energy consumption by 40%, including improving thermal and acoustic insulation, optimising materials and thickening walls and ceilings, as well as introducing new freezer cabinets that are more efficient and respectful towards the environment. The new model further boasts a new automated LED lighting system that adapts to the different areas and times of the day, all in aid of a much more efficient power management.
Similarly, the New Store Model integrates a number of electronic devices and collaborative tools with which to share information from any of the store’s sections, facilitating the autonomy of each supermarket, and speeding up the processes throughout the chain. In total in 2016, 45 million euros have been allocated to R&D+i for IT improvements, and more than 130 specialist technicians have collaborated in the development process. A further 5 million euros will be invested in refurbishments in 2017. Among the new devices are the line of tills, the scales and the use of electronic tablet devices in substitution of paper to carry out administrative tasks. All of this allows for optimising the processes and monitoring the store’s management in real time, which facilitates decision-making and contributes towards improved agility, especially where the management of fresh products is concerned.
Mercadona has also redesigned its corporate web page (www.mercadona.es), updating the previous design and improving usage and communication between the users. The new web page, which is simpler, more intuitive and adapted to mobile devices, has come at an investment of 1 million euros, and more than 30 specialised technicians have collaborated in its development.