23 May 2018 09:30

Metro simplifies issuing of customer cards to boost traffic

MOSCOW. May 23 (Interfax) - German self-service wholesaler Metro Cash & Carry, which has seen a slump in revenue on the Russian market, has simplified the procedure for obtaining customer cards in Russia by reducing the number of documents needed from seven to two,

In the first month after the change, the number of applications processed online daily jumped by about 40% and the number of cards issued at Metro stores rose by an average of 30%, the company said.

The Metro chain is aimed at working with businesses, and its target customers are small stores, and HoReCa businesses. However, sales are split about equally between "professional" and retail customers, the head of Metro's Russian division, Jere Calmes said earlier.

Metro's revenue in Russia fell by 14.9% year-on-year to 1.534 billion euros in the first half of the 2017-2018 financial year (October to March). Revenue in rubles slumped 9.6% and like-for-like sales dropped by 8.8%, the company reported in May.

"As you know, our recent financial results demand big, serious changes from the company. One of these changes was the recent change of pricing policy at all Metro shopping centers and the return to wholesale prices on the shelf for all customers. The second step in regard to our customers was made quite recently. This is the simplification of the procedure for obtaining customer cards," a spokesman for Metro's Russian division told reporters.

"Combined with the new prices, this is also intended to give us more traffic, more competitiveness in future and straighten out our indicators. This is just the first step on the way to a new big strategy," she said.

Metro introduced a new three-level pricing policy at its Russian stores in April that offers bigger discounts for larger purchases.