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Expensive and inexpensive – win in the food market

Axfood is growing faster than the market and invests heavily in advanced technology to the new layer. It is evidenced in the matjättens report for the fourth quarter, which is in line with the analytikerkårens expectations. But while the discounter Willys runs strong forward going, it's not as good for Hemköp. Now, several of the stores to be renovated in order to become more attractive for the customers.

– Hemköp is a strong concept, however, needs to be developed for us to be even more relevant for our customers. We do this by offering more ready-to-eat måltidslösningar at the same time as we work a lot with sustainability and vegoprodukter, says Klas Balkow.

analysts at Danske Bank, believes that Hemköp's development is surprisingly weak. This may be a reflection of the market at large. While the discounters and the premium segment is strongly it is tougher in the mid-price segment, " he says.

" I think the market continues to be developed in two directions. It is becoming increasingly difficult to lie in the middle. It is an ongoing development, " says Daniel Schmidt.

He believes that there are few grocery stores in the premiumsegementet in Sweden, but the mention of Paradise, the Urban Deli, and even the Hemköp store in Åhléns city, some examples of attempts at this.

– However, they are not a large enough percentage of the population in order to be able to say that there is an established premium segment. Instead, one must look at the individual units, where the Ica is a tough competitor, " he says.

Their online sales section has probably got a better start than the Hemköp online sales section, continues Daniel Schmidt.

presented by the Swedish Food retail trade, show that sales in the sector increased by three per cent in 2018. Even if the e-commerce in food has grown more slowly than other industries, the latest figures show an increase of 26.7% in 2018. Even though Axfood does not report the development of the trade online either for Hemköp or Willys think Daniel Schmidt to storkonkurrenten is better.

"the Ica is growing faster than the market as a whole, and because they are the market leader in online, there is reason to believe that the rest of the established players growing in the same pace as the market, or slower," he says.

Link to the graphics

shows that at least 1.5 billion is to be spent on automating the group's new warehouse in Stockholm. Daniel Schmidt expects that the investments required to monitor customers ' buying habits can be a challenge for the big chains in the industry in the future.

– It is spent fully on e-commerce and it means that we are entering a period of high investments. It is difficult to see that it would not affect the returns of the companies, " he says.

Antonia Ax:son Johnson, head of the family business Axel Johnson, who owns half of Axfood, does not stand up for re-election to the board of directors. Instead, the daughter of Caroline Berg take over the helm of the Axfood's board of directors and take over as the new chair of Axel Johnson. The decision was undramatic, according to Klas Balkow.

Antonia has reached the age of 75 years and want to do other things. She has been instrumental in the development we are in now. Caroline, who has taken over from Antonia as the president of Axel Johnson, has been on our board of directors since 2014 has a strong leadership. Antonia is an amazing person and has performed the handover, in a very good way. There is no drama in this, " he says.

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