Coles (ASX:COL) upgrades innovation budget by $1.4 billion

Company News

by Michael Luu

Grocery retail giant Coles (ASX:COL) is stepping up its innovation game, upsizing its digitisation budget by $1.4 billion in a bid to reclaim missed growth opportunities during the pandemic-induced panic buying.

The new funding will bump up Coles’ total expenditure on technological advancement to $2.5 billion for enhance Coles’ automation and digital sales capabilities in the next two years.

The $22.7 billion supermarket operator has announced its technology investment strategy to upgrade the chain’s e-commerce platforms, data analytics and self-serve checkout system.

Furthermore, Australia’s second-largest grocer has entered into partnerships with tech developers such as Ocado and Witron to construct automated storage facilities.

Coles failed to fully capitalise on the binge-buying frenzy when pandemic-driven anxiety led consumers to excessively stock up on supplies. The company’s market share depleted during the period, due to a lack of retail outlets such as stores and online trading.

The ASX-listed supermarket chain recognises the booming business opportunities of the Australian consumer market and considers the increased spending on modernization as “pressing the accelerator” to achieve “the right returns”.

Shares in Coles (ASX:COL) are trading 5 per cent lower at $16.19


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