When Ahold and Delhaize joined forces in the summer of 2016, they became one of the world’s largest retail groups with more than 20 strong local brands. Following the merger, they have developed their strategy around the proposition ‘Better Together’. The aim: to capture the benefits of international scale to build great local brands.
Ahold Delhaize: Better together.
Ahold Delhaize is an omnichannel retail conglomerate, most famous for its leading supermarkets and e-commerce businesses in 11 countries. European brands include Albert Heijn, Delhaize, Etos, Gall & Gall, bol.com, Albert, Maxi, Tempo, AB, ENA and Mega Image. Well-known American brands are Food Lion, Shop&Shop, Hannaford, Giant, Martin’s, Peapod and bfresh. Together, they serve more than 50 million customers every week. The starting point for the Better Together strategy is the shared purpose: “Together, we build great local brands, bringing fresh inspiration every day.” To achieve this, the retail conglomerate is optimizing synergies and its financial framework. The target is to deliver 500 million euro in net synergies in 2019 through better sourcing and operational excellence. This will contribute to funding innovation and investments in future growth.
“We are better together because we learn from each other, because we bring together so many great local brands in one family and because we’re working together to become better every day.” – Dick Boer, CEO
Not for Resale Sourcing
A major area of synergy potential is the sourcing of not-for-resale (NFR) goods and services. Think IT, utilities, logistics, marketing, shopfitting, checkout systems – everything the retailer purchases, that’s not intended to be sold to customers. The European budget for NFR Sourcing is around 3 billion euro, which is currently managed by local NFR teams. It is estimated that NFR Sourcing optimizations will account for a third of the synergy targets for 2019. In order to meet those targets, Bart van der Veldt has been appointed as Manager European NfR Sourcing Development & Intelligence, and he is currently forming a team at group level. This new team will develop and implement a European strategy for what to buy, when to buy and who to buy it from to optimize security, quality and cost of supply. In the initial set-up, the team will consist of one Project Manager and three Sourcing & Intelligence Managers responsible for a cluster of categories. Upon success, the team is likely to expand further.
“Recently, we have achieved a huge success in the area of marketing, a cross-border optimization project on folders. By analyzing the different business models (eg. separate suppliers for paper and printing vs. integrated supplier) in the various countries, we were able to compare rates and define the total cost of production. Next, we calculated what we could gain by standardizing the specs of folders. We had a strong business case, so the decision was made to align specifications and split the sourcing of both the print and paper process.” – Bart van der Veldt, Manager European NFR Sourcing Development & Intelligence
About the role of Manager NFR Sourcing & Intelligence
This is a key role in achieving the ambition Ahold Delhaize to bring the NFR function to the next level. In what way? By contributing to the international NFR strategy and developing methodologies, processes and tools to improve and support the global NFR sourcing function. Each Sourcing & Intelligence Manager will focus on a cluster of 3 or 4 sourcing categories. This focus allows him/her to develop in-depth knowledge of sourcing practices, signal market trends and identify (cross-border) opportunities. Using this expertise, the Manager will steer, coordinate, monitor, develop and support the local NFR teams across Europe with their daily practices. As the Manager is the linking pin between all local teams for the same categories, there is a strong element of community management to this role as well. Although the distribution of the categories is still under review, likely clusters will be:
- IT & Telecom, Supplies & Packaging, Utilities
- Facilities & Maintenance, Construction, Equipment
- Corporate Services, HR, Logistics, Marketing & Merchandising services
- Strong conceptual and strategic mind
- Influencer and communicator
- Determined and persistent
- A linking pin bringing people together
- Master/MBA in business economics or related study
- Familiar with sourcing processes
- Experience within a consulting firm is an advantage
- Excellent analytical skills
- Stakeholder management
- Fluent in English, preferably Dutch
- Professional presentation skills