The supermarket sector in Greece is expecting to see some bad days in the future. Some supermarket chains predict that a price war will take place in the next few months, creating a difficult situation for the companies, which will most probably be bought out by competitors, or – in the worst case scenario – be forced to shut down completely.
Costas Machairas, executive vice president and director for Southeastern Europe and Indonesia of Delhaize, the parent group of the Greek supermarket chain AB Vassilopoulos said: “We are at the bottom of the recession and the crisis is starting for us.” During a conference in Athens on Tuesday he said that the worst is yet to come for the sector and most supermarkets will be forced to shut down or will be penetrated by foreign giants. Machairas described this situation as a form of “cannibalism,” which he said will probably lead to a fall in product quality.
“I can see a nasty price war coming with parallel imports, fake adverts and sales without value-added tax,” stressed the supermarket spokesman. He also expressed his worry that many companies which appear to be economically healthy at the moment will face serious credit problems by 2016.
Apostolos Apostolakos, general director for development at the Greek supermarket chain Sklavenitis, added: “Consumers are thirsty for better prices which entail a number of risks.”