Woolies’ surprising $8.5 billion gamble
A BRAND new chain of stores created by Woolworths and Caltex is set to shake up Australia's $8.5 billion convenience industry.
Earlier today, the country's first Caltex Woolworths Metro store was officially launched in North Ryde in Sydney's northwest.
The store - which will be open 24 hours a day - is just one of 250 outlets due to be rolled out across the country in the coming years.
So what is the fuss all about?
According to the supermarket giant, the new chain will set a benchmark of convenience for Aussies who want to fill up at the bowser and also grab something fresh for breakfast, lunch or dinner, or snap up some fresh food and groceries.
In a nutshell, it will offer the convenience of small Woolworths Metros within a Caltex service station.
The stores, which have been designed and co-created by Woolworths and Caltex and will be owned and operated by Caltex, will offer a "one-stop shop" for consumers with a curated and extensive product range.
Jo Taylor, Caltex's executive general manager, convenience retail, said the company was "excited about redefining the convenience experience".
"We know Australians lead busy lives and are looking for great quality fresh food for a meal on the go or to make preparing a meal at home a little bit easier," she said.
"Our new store will set the new standard of service, product quality and range that customers will begin to expect when they shop in the petrol and convenience sector."
Woolworths general manager, wholesale Ian McDonald said customers' need for "fresh, food-for-now and food-for-later" continued to grow along with expectations of "quality and convenience".
"Caltex Woolworths Metro is an exciting next phase of our partnership with Australia's leading fuel network," he said.
"We're delighted to help bring together some of the best elements of both businesses for the benefit of our mutual customers."
Shoppers at the new stores will be able to pick up a range of fresh sandwiches, hot food like chicken, pies and pastries, barista-made coffee and fresh fruit and vegetables.
There will also be a range of items from Woolworths' Own Brand range and "easier and fast payment options", including self-check-outs in-store and the availability of Caltex's FuelPay app on the forecourt.
Some stores will also partner with quick service eateries like Boost Juice, and customers will have the chance to earn Woolworths Everyday Rewards points and a 4c-per-litre-off redemption offer.
A second Caltex Woolworths Metro will launch in Kingsford in NSW later this month, with a third site to follow in Melbourne in early 2020.