Swedish ICA has record online sales and trust it will increase
During the Ica groups Capital Markets Day in Stockholm recently, the board of directors made it clear that ICA is going to invest heavily in e-commerce in the coming years.
Ica announced that they had a record online sale this year, exceeding SEK 1 billion. That is an increase of 49 percent so far in 2017.
“The ICA stores’ e-commerce business is growing at a fast pace. At several locations we are thereby nearing volumes where it is more efficient to operate central e-commerce warehouses. Hence, we will open e-commerce warehouses in the major metropolitan areas, starting with a manual warehouse in Stockholm. The exact point in time for when we start is something we will have to report on later,” says Anders Svensson, CEO of ICA Sweden.
Make daily life easier for customers
“Each and every one of the businesses in The ICA Group – on their own merits – have built leading positions in their respective markets. The focus going forward is to use the Group structure that we have established and the breadth of ICA to make daily life easier for customers, among other things by building ecosystems based on customers’ varying needs,” comments Per Strömberg, CEO in ICA.
3,5 billion in investments
To secure its long-term growth, The ICA Group will continue with a high rate of investment. Capital expenditures in 2018 are estimated to be SEK 3.5 billion. Investments in 2017 are slightly lower, totalling approximately SEK 3 billion by year-end.
Among other things ICA is increasing its investments in IT and continued digitalisation in all companies, in the new ICAx business, and in improved loyalty services. However, ICA is also continuing to invest in its pharmacy and store networks, and in the expansion of Rimi Baltic’s central warehouse.
During 2018 store establishments are expected to remain at roughly the same level as this year. Rimi Baltic plans to open 6 to 8 new stores, Apotek Hjärtat plans to open 9 to 13 new pharmacies, and ICA Sweden plans to open 10 to 14 new stores in 2018.
The innovation hub ICAx will strengthen the group’s ability to use digital technology to improve its customer offerings in and between the Group’s various companies. Within this hub ICA will work with its own digital development projects, strategic partnerships with other companies, and potentially also with acquisitions.
The aim of the initiative is to accelerate development of digital services for ICA’s various companies and strengthen the Group’s digital ecosystem. The goal is that ICAx will deliver three to six new projects per year and leverage internal ideas across the whole group in a structured manner. The goal is that customers will see many new services from ICAx in the future.
ICA Group's Strategic Priorities 2018
The ICA Group Board has established the company's strategic priorities for 2018. The priorities shall facilitate cooperation and exploitation of synergies between different activities within ICA and help create growth.
The ICA Group has five long-term strategic themes that set the direction for the business;
- Customer experience
- Brand and loyalty
- Employee satisfaction
In addition to the longer-term themes, each year, many more short-term common issues are identified as priorities. These priorities focus on ICA Group's most important areas and facilitates cooperation and exploitation of synergies between different activities within ICA Group. Priorities have been adjusted to accommodate future opportunities and challenges.
The ICA Group's strategic priorities for 2018 can be summarized in ten points:
- Secure competitive prices and a fair price perception.
- Implement strong customer offerings for ICA Special, Hemtex and ICA Bank.
- Create leading omnichannel and delivery offers across ICA's operations and platforms.
- Strengthen store networks and concepts focusing on big city and convenience.
- Successfully complete and integrate the acquisition of the Lithuanian grocery chain IKI.
- Strengthen the common loyalty program with a leading, more personalized CRM and new gital services in the ecosystem.
- Increase stability and efficiency throughout the value chain, focusing on logistics and stores competitiveness.
- Increase development pace and efficiency through new working methods and automation.
- Improve working methods for achievement, career and development as well as increasing ability to change.
- Drive "Good morning" focusing on health and climate.