Countdown to Woolworths

Countdown to Woolworths

Countdown has today announced its long term commitment to delivering New Zealand’s best supermarket experiences for customers and team with an accelerated transformation programme underway.

The transformation includes more value for customers through a refreshed loyalty programme with the launch of Everyday Rewards for New Zealand planned for early 2024. There is also significant investment planned with over $NZ400 million over the next three years allocated to a renewal of the store network, with a focus on older stores across Aotearoa.

Customers will also see more convenient eCommerce shopping options, a deeper connection to grassroots community activities, and further commitment to top quality fruit and vegetables with a state-of-the-art Christchurch Fresh Distribution Centre opening in 2024. This will complement the Auckland Fresh Distribution Centre which opened in 2022.

Woolworths has a long history in New Zealand, opening its first New Zealand store in Wellington in 1929.

From early 2024, Countdown Supermarkets will be rebranded as Woolworths Supermarkets New Zealand, a name well known locally given the brand’s long history in the country.

Managing Director of Countdown and Woolworths Group New Zealand, Spencer Sonn, says the supermarket retailer has been working hard to become a better business and do more to meet customers needs and expectations, and now is the time to accelerate that change.

“Having had the privilege of leading the New Zealand team for over two years now, I know there’s a lot that people love about what we do, and none of that will be going away. But our ambition is to be the best and to do this we know we need to be a better place to shop, better to work for and all-round better for Aotearoa’s tomorrow.

“We are proud to be part of New Zealand communities and with this transformation our customers can expect to see more value, better ways to shop in-store and online, sustained investment in our charity partnerships and for us to lead in sustainability.

“Delivering the best supermarket experiences includes our team too. We’re privileged to employ over 22,000 hard-working New Zealanders and we want to give each and every one of them a fantastic experience, whether it’s a part-time job after school, or a decades-long career with us.

“In the coming months and years, you’re going to see us bringing the best of the Woolworths brand across the Tasman and equally sharing the best of what we have here with the broader Woolworths Group. We’re changing for the better and a name change for our stores is just one part of that.”

Woolworths Group CEO, Brad Banducci says that Woolworths has a long history in New Zealand, opening its first New Zealand store in Wellington in 1929, and now operating 194 Countdown supermarkets across the country. “I’m excited by today’s announcement and what it means for our continued commitment to New Zealand and its ongoing importance to Woolworths Group.

“The next stage of our transformation and the rebranding of our stores to Woolworths Supermarkets New Zealand, means we’re doubling down on our trans-Tasman connection to bring the very best to our Kiwi customers. That includes a refreshed loyalty programme focused on providing more value and a materially improved fresh offer.”

Countdown Supermarkets will rebrand to Woolworths Supermarkets New Zealand in early 2024 with individual store signage changes beginning in the coming months, and the entire network planned for the next couple of years.

Other parts of the supermarket’s transformation programme include investing in making stores safer with more than $NZ45 million of investment planned for adding security measures and upskilling team members. The business has also recently rolled out Sonder, a wellbeing solution across Woolworths Group that provides 24/7 access to care, not only for all of its team, but all of their whānau too.

Customers are invited to provide feedback and ask questions about today’s announcement through the dedicated portal:   

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