This week, Dia announced plans to invest EUR100m (US$134.9m) in opening 400 discount supermarkets in Spain next year. Here, we take a look at the discount retailing in the Spanish market with the help of Euromonitor’s Retailing in Spain report.

  • Discounters recorded the best performance among retail grocery formats in Spain, growing by almost 3% in total value terms in 2009 to reach just over EUR6bn. In 2009 sales of discounters benefited from the economic crisis, which led to record unemployment and debt levels. 
  • With the intense re-structuring process the environment has seen since 2007, the number of discount outlet [openings] in 2009 increased by approaching 1%. Most of the alterations included a change in name, in an effort to forge a closer link with Spanish consumers in 2007 and 2008. This was the case for the discounter brand Dia %, which transformed into MaxiDia and Dia Market following the strategy also used by Champion, which is now known as Carrefour Express. 
  • Soft discounters continued to dominate the Spanish discount segment, led by Dia, with a value share of 63% in 2009. Soft discount chains such as Dia are increasingly supplementing their product assortment by offering a limited range of branded products to attract consumers who continue to prefer brand-name products in certain categories, such as soft drinks, milk or oils and fats. 
  • By contrast, hard discounters have traditionally sold private-label products exclusively, offering very limited product ranges and focusing on achieving a rapid product turnover. Aldi is the hard discounter with the largest presence in Spain. 
  • Discounters are expected to record a better performance than hypermarkets and supermarkets with sales rising 16% in constant value terms from 2009 to 2014. The cheap prices that discounter chains offer will be key in explaining their healthy performance. The number of outlets is expected to grow by 9% over the same period.