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Ireland’s Sunday Business Post reports that Spar, which operates more than 400 stores there, is unveiling a new private brand line called “S-Budget” that will be made up of some 50 SKUs described as being 40 percent cheaper than national brands.

According to the story, “Half of these will be sourced through the company’s bilateral agreement with Spar Austria, and the other half from local Irish producers. The new range will be introduced in the company’s 53 Eurospar outlets, and around 50 Spar supermarkets around the country.”

Ireland, after years of prosperity and growth, has been reeling from economic reverses in recent months, and discounters such as Aldi have been able to take advantage of the situation to build sales and market share. The Post notes that Spar International managing director Gordon Campbell recently said that ‘‘the recent shift in market share to the discounters may continue in the near future.”

The Spar move follows the Superquinn move to unveil an “Essentials” line of budget-priced products, though Spar execs say that the “S-Budget” line has been in the planning stages for some time.

“We believe the SBudget range, along with Spar private label expansion and promotions, will encourage people to spend more of their weekly shopping budget with us," says Spar Ireland managing director Willie O’Byrne. ‘‘Spar was a fantastic Celtic tiger player and grew well then; as the economy went into recession, we have adopted a different strategy to deal with this.”
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