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Online supermarket Picnic growing faster than the market

Leadership & Governance

9 October 2017

Although online sales of supermarket chains have been stagnating for some time now, in the first half of 2017 online supermarket and NPM portfolio company Picnic saw its customer numbers double to 65,000.

CEO and co-founder Michiel Muller expects this trend to continue, because he is banking on total annual sales of €100 million in 2017.

Picnic began in the Dutch city of Amersfoort in September 2015, and is primarily active in the central region of the country. Its expansion into the rest of the Netherlands is to be realised through a new distribution centre currently under construction at the Lage Weide business park near Utrecht, which is slated to go operational in March 2018. Picnic already had a distribution centre in nearby Nijkerk, and will need two more in order to achieve national coverage.

Thousands of new jobs

Right now Picnic is serving 24 cities, four times as many as at the end of last year. ‘And we’re adding more every week,’ says co-founder Michiel Muller. This growth is being made possible thanks in part to a €100 million investment in Picnic by NPM Capital.

Picnic’s expansion plans will generate thousands of jobs across the country, says Muller. At present the company employs approximately one thousand people; in three years this number is expected to grow to ten thousand. The new Utrecht distribution centre alone will employ at least five hundred people.

Less food waste

Picnic is a sustainable supermarket, which makes its deliveries with a fleet of small electric vehicles (currently 250). The method of ordering and distribution also helps the company keep food waste lower than conventional supermarkets.

Read more about Picnic in Capital #09 ‘Picnic: grocery shopping new style’