REWE (pronounced "ray-ver") is one of Europe's biggest grocery retailers, with 9,500 owned outlets in Germany and other markets across the region including Austria and several Central & Eastern European countries, and another 6,000 or so affiliated cooperative partner stores supplied by the group's wholesale operations. The group is Germany's second largest food retailer after Edeka with around 15% local share, but is also involved in several other retail sectors. The main REWE supermarket chain is partnered by discount giant Penny - a keen rival to Aldi and Lidl in Germany and other markets - as well as other full-range supermarket banners including Billa in several Central & Eastern European countries including Austria and Bulgaria, and Merkur and Adeg in Austria. Toom is a separate DIY and home improvement chain, and the group operates Bipa pharmacies in Austria and Croatia. It also has a major presence in the travel & tourism market through package holiday operators including DER Touristik and ITS and agencies including Kuoni and Atlas Reisen. Systemwide sales including affiliates were €62.7bn in 2019. Group revenues were €55.4bn, with net income of €507m. Supermarket retail operations accounted for almost 86% of revenues. Lionel Souque succeeded Alain Caparros as CEO in 2017. The group was formed in 1927 from the merger of 17 separate grocery cooperatives across Germany. Additional co-ops joined the group over the following years and after 1990 REWE began to expand into international markets, mainly through acquisitions such as Austria's Billa supermarket chain.
Capsule checked 16th July 2020
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Adbrands Daily Update 7th Nov 2019: "Forever Young". Sometimes keeping it simple is really the best strategy. At a time when many retailers are investing substantial sums in lavish Christmas spots that have a vague air of desperation about them - M&S's seasonal food ad, also out today, is a perfect example - German discount supermarket Penny has stripped right back to basics. Re-emphasising its position as a force to be reckoned with, agency Serviceplan delivers a simple but wholly charming spot that creates a warm halo around the Penny brand without trying to sell a single product. Beautiful scenery combines with a little visual sleight of hand: the soundtrack makes you assume these are kids. "Christmas is for children," says the tag line. "But also for us all."
Adbrands Social Media 7th Jan 2019: "Organic For Everyone". Here's a lovely start to 2019 from Serviceplan for German discounter Penny, which envisions an ordinary urban environment overgrown with an abundance of nature. It's a ravishing concept, illustrated by a succession of beautifully extravagant images. Our particular favourite is one of the quirkiest: the guy plucking rooftop-grown carrots through the ceiling of his flat. One side-note: we don't imagine indie musician Edward Barton ever imagined that the ethereal poem 'It's Fine Day' recorded a cappella by his girlfriend Jane in 1982 would be used in a German supermarket ad almost 40 years later. We hope he retained rights; he could probably do with the cash.
Adbrands Weekly Update 19th Jul 2018: Ads of the Week "Good For You. And For Your Region". When it comes to supermarket advertising, the simple approach often works best. Here's a fine spot from WPP-owned Thjnk for REWE, one of Germany's biggest grocery chains: 'Good For You. And Your Region'. Lovely photography is enhanced by some very clever digital effects to blend the different shots into one another. That sweater-to-forest wipe is especially good. The idea is to give a special push to Germany's regional producers; that's an approach that has long been productive for France's Leclerc, and has recently been adopted by Morrisons of the UK as well.
Adbrands Weekly Update 9th Nov 2017: Ads of the Week "The Long Path". Trust the Germans to come up with a completely different approach to Christmas ads. Serviceplan's excellent new film for discount retailer Penny will have you gripped, we guarantee. Despite its moody tone and the lack of tinsel, it has a powerful and compelling message to make about the forthcoming holiday season. And you may be surprised by the wholly unexpected laugh out loud punchline.
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