Centra, Ireland’s number one convenience brand, has announced that it recorded retail sales of over €1.5 billion in 2014, a 3% increase on the previous year’s performance. Centra also revealed that it will add 380 jobs to the network this year, as 16 new stores are set to open in 2015. Last year, Centra retailers invested €7m in store openings and refurbishment, adding 25,000 sq. ft. to the Centra network.
Centra’s growth was underpinned by increased Own Brand sales, the introduction of its all day fresh food range, innovative products and services and delivering great value across all categories.
Sales of the Centra Own Brand range rose by 14%, reflecting the trend of consumers switching to Own Brand products in recent years.
Fresh food sales also drove growth, with the launch of Centra’s new range of gourmet sandwiches and pizzas experiencing significant sales increases. Gourmet sandwiches sales rose 8%, while pizza sales increased by 17% during the year. This was boosted by innovative promotions such as Centra’s 1 cent tea and coffee promotion on budget day, with coffee sales rising 14% in 2014.
Speaking today at the brand’s National Retailer Conference in Killarney to over 463 retailers in attendance, Martin Kelleher, Managing Director of Centra, said: “2014 was a very successful year for Centra in which we continued to lead the convenience market and achieved milestone sales of €1.5 billion. This is a tremendous achievement for the brand and our retailers, clearly demonstrating that consumers recognise that Centra offers the best value, choice and quality in the market. It also places the Centra brand within the top twenty Irish brands by turnover, which is a huge accomplishment when you consider that this has been achieved by the combined efforts of 463 local businesses across the country.”
“We plan to drive this momentum into 2015 by continuing to differentiate Centra from the competition by introducing new healthier ranges which will make it easier for shoppers to pick up healthy options at any time of the day, investing further in our Own Brand and fresh food ranges, whilst also focusing on rolling out new smart eCommerce technology services to give consumers the best retail experience in the market.”
With 463 stores, Centra employs almost 11,000 people and serves over three million customers per week. Centra purchases from Irish producers, selling over €1.1 billion of Irish goods, with 75% of all products sold in store produced or sourced in Ireland, with an additional €60 million worth of product being sourced by stores locally from over 1,400 small local suppliers.
Centra also invests over €240 million in local communities per annum, which is the equivalent of €4.5 million per week through a combination of payments to local suppliers, acquisition of local business services, wages, charitable donations and local sponsorships.