The Fourlis Group, one of the master licensees of Intersport, has rolled out an electronic shelf labelling (ESL) solution that allows for instant price changes at some of its stores in Greece and other countries, permitting better price management and saving a lot of time. Based in Greece, Fourlis is the master licensee for Intersport and The Athlete’s Foot in Greece, Romania, Bulgaria, Cyprus and Turkey.

The ESL system, which has been supplied by Pricer, also features a QR code that allows the customer to find more information about the product and to order it if a particular size or model is not available in the store. The store personnel has real-time visibility over the related inventory situation.

The ESL system is now operational in ten stores based on the advanced Intersport 2.0 concept in Greece, Cyprus, Romania and Bulgaria. It will be integrated into new stores and renovations in the future. The prices are adjusted every morning before the opening of the store.

Separately, Fourlis said it will continue to invest in the expansion of its store network as well as the development of e-commerce and logistics. To this end, a logistics subsidiary of the group will invest €11 million in a new highly automated distribution center for sporting goods at Oinofyta. Due to become fully operational in January 2022, it is expected to provide maximum flexibility in the processing of instant store fulfillment and online orders in all the countries in its territory.

Fourlis currently operates a total of 136 Intersport and TAF stores, including 53 Intersport stores in Greece, 34 in Romania, 17 in Turkey, nine in Bulgaria and six in Cyprus. It also manages 14 TAF stores in Greece and three in Turkey.

E-commerce achieved high growth rates for Intersport and TAF in 2020, especially in Greece. Nevertheless, the coronavirus pandemic led the two banners to suffer a 19.2 percent drop in domestic sales last year. Sales in the other countries fell at an even stronger rate of 26.6 percent.

Overall, their revenues declined by 22.6 percent to €127.0 million in the five countries, leading to a decline in Ebitda to €14.3 million from €28.2 million in the prior year. Adding depreciation and amortization, the results showed an operating loss (Ebit) of €6.1 million, versus a profit of €11.2 million in the previous year, and a pre-tax loss of €13.6 million.

Adding its master franchise for Ikea and other operations, Fourlis reported Ebitda of €43.1 million and a net loss of €19.9 million for last year on total revenues of €370.6 million, compared with a net profit of €19.5 million on revenues of €466.3 million in 2019.