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Old July 22nd, 2009, 07:45 PM   #1
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Iranian Supermarkets

Supermarkets are a relatively recent thing in Iran and they are pretty slow to catch on. Most people are still doing their shopping in small, local minimarkets and in more rural areas, at the market. But Slowly two or three main supermarket companies are starting to emerge and I think its a good idea to document this change in peoples everyday way of life:
Refah Chain:


A Refah in Hamadan

A Refah chiller section

Shahrvand chain:


A Shahrvand in the Beyhaqi neibourhood of Tehran

A Shahrvand freezer section

Does anyone know whats happening with the Carrefour hypermarket that was under construction near the Azadi stadium? Maybe if they establish themselves in Iran they will bring their Dia Supermarkets chain too and reduce prices for consumers. One of the main things slowing down supermarkets in Iran is that they are usually more expensive than the minimarkets.
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Old July 22nd, 2009, 09:30 PM   #2
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Very cool thread.

But supermarkets have been around for the past at least 18 years, I know one in Argentina square in Tehran and the one in Farmaniyeh area.

The one near Azadi square and across from the domestic airport has been open for at least 14 years now
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Old July 22nd, 2009, 09:56 PM   #3
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Yes but they havent really taken a large share of the market. Although the first ones appeared that long ago its still the beginning of supermarkets at the moment for whatever reason. Its a good time to start watching their progress especially if opens and brings in supermarkets. That would shake things up a bit. Have you heard anything about that Carrefour?
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 01:07 AM   #4
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I haven't heard about it since I'm not in Iran but it's possible that they open in Iran. And you are right the big supermarkets are almost new in Iran...I personally like to see more of them
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 02:37 AM   #5
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Yep majority of Iranians prefer shopping at their local grocers rather than going to a supermarket. Price wise I am sure it works out pretty much the same between your local ba'ghal (shopkeeper) varying mark-ups on a person-to-person and day-to-day rate and the set prices of the supermarkets. But I think the local shop has fresher stock because of good stock turnover, and all fruit and veg. are from markets and local green grocers.

Personally I believe that it is better that Iranians continue supporting the small business owner rather than trading up to faceless soul-less corporations, end of the day these companies can draw enough revenue as it is currently. Anyway Shahrvand is the main one I have seen and been to regularly, I believe it is a Rafsanjani business venture.
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 05:01 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herbicide View Post
One of the main things slowing down supermarkets in Iran is that they are usually more expensive than the minimarkets.
Shouldn't it be the other way around?

Anyway, I have mixed emotions about supermarkets in Iran. I think it's a cool and great idea, but I hope it doesn't replace the bazaars of Iran.
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 05:48 PM   #7
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Well I have to say I have mixed feelings about supermarkets too. Especially in Scotland where I really hate Tesco for its rapacious policies towards its suppliers and anti competitive practices against rivals. But the thing is I have a LIDL near me and its so cheap with not bad quality, its the only place for famillies on a tight budget. They cant afford the minimarket prices. Despite plenty of supermarkets in Glasgow there are still plenty of minimarkets which cant be beaten for convenience. I only go to them if I just need one simple thing that doesnt warant a trip to the supermarket further away. But I dont go to them for everything or I would end up paying almost twice as much for my groceries. I think there is a place for both minimarkets and supermarkets. As we know food prices in Iran are getting tough for many famillies and a competitive discounter like Dia%, LIDL or ALDI could really benefit shoppers in the pocket saving them alot of time searching through many different shops for the best deal or a particular product. It would also force Refah and Shahrvand to become more competitive. Iranian supermarkets in a more competitive shape could then expand operations throughout Iran and perhaps even into neighbouring Middle-East, Caucuses, Central and South Asian countries. As far as I recall about bazaars I dont think they would be much affected as they mostly sell non food stuff which isnt where supermarkets usually dominate.
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Old July 25th, 2009, 06:20 PM   #8
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Tehran Can Hold 100 Shahrvand Stores | Tehran Municipality

Managing director of Shahrvand Department Stores announced that 24th branch of Shahrvand will be opened in Naziabad neighborhood in the next two months.
SAMA quoted Ali Ahmadian as saying that the store has been built in cooperation with the private sector.

The official added that, thus far, 10 branches of Shahrvand have been built in cooperation with the private sector including those in Naziabad, North Majidiyeh, Tehran No, Jomhouri Eslami, and Lavizan, which are owned by the private sector.
Ahmadian said 23 Shahrvand stores have been opened in Tehran, but the city is big enough for 100 Shahrvand stores.
Managing director of Shahrvand Department Stores also stated that on average, five new stores have been launched in the past 2-3 years.
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Old July 27th, 2009, 01:01 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shugs View Post
Yep majority of Iranians prefer shopping at their local grocers rather than going to a supermarket. Price wise I am sure it works out pretty much the same between your local ba'ghal (shopkeeper) varying mark-ups on a person-to-person and day-to-day rate and the set prices of the supermarkets. But I think the local shop has fresher stock because of good stock turnover, and all fruit and veg. are from markets and local green grocers.

Personally I believe that it is better that Iranians continue supporting the small business owner rather than trading up to faceless soul-less corporations, end of the day these companies can draw enough revenue as it is currently. Anyway Shahrvand is the main one I have seen and been to regularly, I believe it is a Rafsanjani business venture.
Right on. I think they should have more of these but not overdue it
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Old July 27th, 2009, 01:53 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herbicide View Post
Well I have to say I have mixed feelings about supermarkets too. Especially in Scotland where I really hate Tesco for its rapacious policies towards its suppliers and anti competitive practices against rivals. But the thing is I have a LIDL near me and its so cheap with not bad quality, its the only place for famillies on a tight budget. They cant afford the minimarket prices. Despite plenty of supermarkets in Glasgow there are still plenty of minimarkets which cant be beaten for convenience. I only go to them if I just need one simple thing that doesnt warant a trip to the supermarket further away. But I dont go to them for everything or I would end up paying almost twice as much for my groceries. I think there is a place for both minimarkets and supermarkets. As we know food prices in Iran are getting tough for many famillies and a competitive discounter like Dia%, LIDL or ALDI could really benefit shoppers in the pocket saving them alot of time searching through many different shops for the best deal or a particular product. It would also force Refah and Shahrvand to become more competitive. Iranian supermarkets in a more competitive shape could then expand operations throughout Iran and perhaps even into neighbouring Middle-East, Caucuses, Central and South Asian countries. As far as I recall about bazaars I dont think they would be much affected as they mostly sell non food stuff which isnt where supermarkets usually dominate.
Agh I hate Tesco, penny theivin' bastards, lidl is great but I don't think the concept will work in Iran for quite a while yet.
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Old July 27th, 2009, 02:00 AM   #11
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LOL, Tesco is alright man. They sell good stuff compared to the chains we have over here!
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Old July 27th, 2009, 02:31 AM   #12
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You dont have LIDL/ALDI where you are? Im not going back to the British brands, apart from maybe CO-OP, now ive tried German ones. They are such a rip-off!
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Old August 17th, 2009, 11:08 PM   #13
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There were reports of a carefour being discretely built.

Is there such a construction going on?

Are there any other major supermarkets, or is Shahravand the main player?
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Old August 18th, 2009, 12:58 AM   #14
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Apparently there is another smaller one called Etka , which bizarrely is staffed mostly by young men doing their national service and provides supermarkets for servicemen and their families. So you can do your national service in a supermarket. Its something like in the UK.
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Old August 18th, 2009, 01:06 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kamstein View Post
There were reports of a carefour being discretely built.

Is there such a construction going on?
Yep we have a thread on it: http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=449301

Welcome to the forums
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Old August 18th, 2009, 03:07 AM   #16
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thank you.

I've been observing the Iran forum for a few years, and know pretty much all the threads. (the sky patogh one not so much)

In fact, that carefour thread link was the basis of my info, and I wanted to see if there was any update as the last article posted on it refers to its construction.
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Old August 18th, 2009, 05:29 PM   #17
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Welcome.

The Carrefour development has gone quiet for a while. Im wondering if it has been quietly cancelled or is on hold because I cannot find any recent mention of it anywhere.
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Old August 21st, 2009, 05:45 AM   #18
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Some more photos of Shahrvand I found somewhere in my Tehran photo thread


















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Old August 21st, 2009, 06:26 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shugs View Post
Personally I believe that it is better that Iranians continue supporting the small business owner rather than trading up to faceless soul-less corporations, end of the day these companies can draw enough revenue as it is currently. Anyway Shahrvand is the main one I have seen and been to regularly, I believe it is a Rafsanjani business venture.
Same here, it is important to have a strong local economy.
Here in the states super markets have much too much control, but we still have farmers markets.
Now, getting more exotic goods will likely require a super market in Iran.
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Old August 22nd, 2009, 03:51 AM   #20
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The green buildings in the middle are main Shahrvand supermarkets in Central Tehran... I think this was the first real supermarket in Tehran that opened nearly 16 years ago in Arjantin Sq./ Central Tehran

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