Once upon a time…
A Portuguese trading company, Jeronimo Martins, decided to enter the Polish market and acquired a cash&carry chain from Elektromis. It was April 1, 1995.
Under the Eurocash umbrella, the cash&carries were restructured, modernized, and their number increased. And then, in 2000 crisis set in, and spread through 2002. Jeronimo Martins focused their efforts on developing the Biedronka discount stores, while the cash&carry was left on a side-track. No expansion, no success, only losses and a demotivated team.
It could not go on like that. On April 1, 2003 Luis Amaral with a group of his ex-colleagues carried out a management buy-out of Eurocash from JM. They were swimming against the tide. Their strategy, developed by the team, consisted in gaining the number one position in wholesale, whereas other players were betting on large format retail!
From the very beginning the Eurocash team consistently and stubbornly, against the convictions of all around, was upholding their belief that traditional trade had (and has) a future in Poland, and the company’s task was (and is) to assist small shops in their fight against the giants.
Slowly, gradually, the strategy began to bring visible results. Already in year 2004 the company was in the black, and in February 2005 Eurocash SA was floated at the Warsaw Stock Exchange. From then on, things went fast:
The successive companies which joined the Eurocash Group were no random choice. Most of them were leaders in their market segment. We were acquiring only the best ones and only those who fit our business puzzle.
Effects of that strategy? We started with a modest 1,5% FMCG market share, today we serve nearly 25% of the market. And it is not over yet! We are ready for more.
- 2006Acquisition: Delikatesy CentrumAcquisition: KDWT
- 2007Acquisition: Pay Up Polska
- 2008Acquisition: McLane
- 2009Acquisition: Batna
- 2010Acquisition: PolcaterAcquisition: Premium Distributors
- 2011Acquisition: Grupa Dystrybucyjna Tradis