The first thing to say is that the METRO Markets project is an ambitious and a highly interesting one – and is also a major opportunity. 2 teams under the auspices of CEO Jan-Philipp Blome – one in Düsseldorf and the other in Kiev – have been developing the B2B online marketplace for METRO since last year. The purpose of the new platform is to promote online retail alongside bricks-and-mortar business at the wholesale stores and the growing Food Service Distribution (FSD) sector – initially throughout Europe and in the long term even internationally.
Its clear focus on own business owners in particular in the HoReCa sector brings stores, FSD business and the B2B marketplace together. A new aspect for METRO is that with this platform, it is opening itself up to potential retailers too. The idea is for numerous vendors to help shape the product range within the marketplace in the future, as other platforms in the B2C sector such as Zalando, ABOUT YOU and Amazon have been doing with great success for some time now.
The core customer group, HoReCa, will benefit not least from a substantially wider product array thanks to METRO’s new B2B platform. A degree of patience is called for, however, as the online marketplace will initially only go live in 1 country this year. This will allow what METRO Markets has developed so far in theory to be tested in practice. The digital marketplace will then be rolled out gradually in other METRO countries once the business model is running smoothly.