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Issue 6 • Bimonthly magazine November 2019 P911235 • General post office Brussels X

Far away and still close by

Cru, 5 years on First-class wines run in the family Comedy on command






Panorama 4 6 11 12 15 20 22


Five questions about Black Friday Brief Open house at our potato farmer Interview: Jo Spiegeleer about 5 years Cru File: Colruyt India In pictures: our renewed office bus More about P&O

Our profession 23 26 28 30 32 34 36 38

Together for safer logistics The driving Field Service closet An insight into the Academy of Liège Visit Brazilian coffee farmers Wine & beer: double enjoyment Spar goes to Scotland First-class wines run in the family An inventory worker's workplace

Digital Gazette


via portal

Dear colleagues, The fascinating world of retail in which Colruyt Group is active is evolving. Every day we read about the ambitious plans and initiatives of various players in the sector. The arrival of the Dutch company Jumbo in Belgium is, of course, the most eye-catching at the moment. It is always good to weigh our words when talking about our competitors. However, I am convinced that we should not be afraid of Jumbo. Over the years, we have welcomed many new retailers to the Belgian market. With Colruyt Group's various store formats, we are the only Belgian retailer to have the perfect response to this. Colruyt Lowest Prices' contribution as a lever is important here. You can have low, attractive, competitive prices, but only one has the 'lowest prices' and that is Colruyt. We know our business. Responding to competitors is one of our core activities. We built that craftsmanship over a period of 35 years. Nobody has the system we have. And our competent, friendly and attentive employees are our biggest strength. Each and everyone of you who is passionate about our customers every day. Loving our customers, that's what it's all about! Colruyt's high score in the GfK summer report and the election of 'Best Retailer in Belgium' - which we have won several years in a row now - are a good sign of appreciation from our customers. In the run-up to the end of the year, I wish you satisfied customers, a great festive period and a very good start to 2020.

Chris Van Wettere General Manager Colruyt Lowest Prices

Between you and me 39 40 42 43 44 46 47 48

The Globe: Shirjan and Qadir from Afghanistan Knife thrower axed Part-time coffee roaster Comedy on command Birth, marriage, cohabitation, pension, death Wall of Fame Flashback: our video studio in 1981 Photo finish

COLOPHON Circulation: Dutch: 22,500 copies • French: 17,000 copies Editor-in-chief: Niels Goossens. Final editing: Jonathan Deleuze and Niels Goossens. Design: Christophe Faut. Photography: Katleen Vandeneede. Publication manager: Nathalie Roisin. Editor: Jo Willemyns, nv Colruyt Group Services S.A., Edingensesteenweg 196, B-1500 Halle. Telephone: +32 (0)2 363 55 45 OR: 742397 Printed on 100% recycled paper. Contact The Gazette via or send a direct to GAZET. On the cover: Navya Devi Ramakuri, employee at Colruyt India Human Resources in Hyderabad. Photo: Ravi Varma.


Panorama • Focus


5 questions about Black Friday 'Black Friday' is on the fourth Friday of November every year, the day after Thanksgiving. During this discount bonanza you can make some incredible bargains, in the high street and online. The phenomenon has come over from America and has broken all records in recent years. Also at Collishop and Dreamland. 1 What is Black Friday? In the United States, families sit around the table on Thursday for Thanksgiving. The next day, many people are off work and the hunt for Christmas gifts can begin. The discounts are huge and literally lead to a bargain frenzy. Crowds of people storm the shops; TVs, computers and toys are all grabbed from the shelves. Since 2006, seven people have been killed and 98 injured. In recent years, most business is done online.

2 Where does the term come from? In the early fifties, Philadelphia police described the Friday after Thanksgiving as 'black' because so many people were on the move that the traffic was completely congested and the pavements were like one black throng. The expression was given its current meaning when in 1975 the New York Times described 'Black Friday' as the busiest shopping day of the year. According to another theory, the term refers to the black figures that shopkeepers record after Black Friday, because they suddenly sell so much and are out of the red.

3 When is Black Friday this year? On November 29th, exactly one week before Sinterklaas. Not the best day in other words. It puts the necessary pressure on us to deliver all ordered items on time to our pick-up points. Many retailers are using terms such as 'Black Week' and 'Black Weekend' to spread the work. On Monday, you can still score deals online, because then the bargain period ends with Cyber Monday. Other 'commercial holidays' are also gaining in popularity, such as Singles Day on 11 November, created by the Chinese webshop Alibaba.

The peak day of the year, with record numbers of visitors in the webshop and a record turnover. Especially the categories of toys, multimedia and games score well. It can be felt in all departments. That's why Dreamland even works with night shifts at the distribution centre that weekend. This year, on Friday, Dreamland is offering 10% on all toys and Black Deals from 29/11 up to and including 2/12.

5 And at Collishop? Here too, Black Friday was the busiest moment of the year in recent editions. In 2018, more than 30,000 customers placed an order, 30% of whom were new customers. In the top categories of kitchen and appliances the turnover doubled compared to 2017. Textiles also do well. This year, Collishop is launching 50 top bargains every day from 25/11, and on Black Friday itself a 'big bang' with amazing deals on hundreds of articles.

Text: Niels Goossens / Photo: Katleen Vandeneede

4 What does this mean for Dreamland?


Panorama • Brief

North Sea Wind: offshore wind turbines for the general public Colruyt Group is supporting North Sea Wind. This is a cooperative company that offers the general public - and therefore all our Belgian employees as well - the opportunity to invest in supporting offshore wind energy projects. As a company, we have been investing in large projects since 2009 which together can provide 604,000 Belgian households with green electricity for a year. North Sea Wind will provide the capital raised through a loan for a principal 7-year term to Parkwind NV which is participating in the construction and operation of various offshore wind farms, including those in the Belgian North Sea.

3 questions to François Van Leeuw, CEO of Parkwind NV

Why should I invest?

"Taking care of the generations after us with your investment in North Sea Wind, you do that concretely. You can also buy shares registered in the name of your children or grandchildren, which are donated to the beneficiaries immediately after the allocation. Hence the slogan: 'Everyone win(d)s'.

How and how much can I invest?

"A so-called 'co-operative B-share' costs EUR 10. You can invest from 250 euros per person (or 25 shares) and the maximum investment per person has been raised to 5,000 euros. There are no entry fees and no exit fees. Investing in shares involves risks, such as losing part or all of the invested capital. Please be sure to first read the prospectus and the supplement carefully atële-info, with particular attention to the risk factors. The approval of the prospectus or the supplement is not to be considered as an endorsement of the B-shares."

Until when is it possible?

"Subscribing to B-shares of North Sea Wind is possible until 23 November 2019 (16:00 CET), subject to early closing. For more information, please go to or"



Colruyt recipe book: ‘Snel aan tafel’ The new Colruyt recipe book ‘Snel aan tafel’ has been on the shelves since 6 November. On the menu: handy casserole dishes, oven dishes, stews and meals that you can easily prepare in advance. This is our 37th recipe book, conceived by the culinary team of Lekker Koken, developed by CCX and produced by Symeta. In all, we have already sold more than 4 million recipe books.

Colruyt helps students to eat healthy snacks Secondary school students who sell each other healthy and cheap 'snacks' such as vegetables, fruit or water in a 'chill' environment, such as a cool tuck shop or trendy bar. This is the concept of the new Snack & Chill programme, which will run in Flanders from February 2020. Last year it was extensively tested in 19 secondary schools. The offer was appreciated: about half of the students bought fruit, 75% of which several times. Colruyt is one of the retailers supporting this programme and provides the registered schools with three types of fruit and vegetables each week at a favourable fixed price.


Grouping sick notes Sick colleagues, it happens. Department heads receive a sick note and send it in an envelope to the payroll department. "At large departments, there can be quite big piles", says Cindy Michiels, department head group Y2 Building 4 at the distribution centre in Dassenveld. "We for example are with thirteen managers. So I thought: why not prepare one envelope every day in the morning, in which everyone puts their sick notes. At the end of the day the envelope is sent. That means one envelope instead of thirteen. One processing by the postal service instead of thirteen. And it's also easier for the payroll department." No sooner said than done, the system is now in use!

€ 33,221 Collibri Foundation's 'Round it up' campaign was another success: between 28 August and 10 September, 65,449 Colruyt, OKay, Bio-Planet, Collect&Go and Dreamland customers rounded up their receipt. Good for a total of 33,221 euros, which Colruyt Group doubled to 66,442 euros. In this way, our customers contribute to the training, support and exchange for more than 5,000 young people in Belgium and abroad.

Brukom Bikes to become 12th Fiets! branch Our bicycle specialist Fiets! has taken over Brukom Bikes in Sint-Pieters-Leeuw. Brukom Bikes has been well known in the Halle area for over 10 years. The whole team will continue to work there. "This opportunity came at the perfect time," says Michel Verhaeren, CEO of Fiets! "We did not yet have a shop near our parent company Colruyt Group. This take-over is therefore a win-win situation for both parties. There is a good chance that the number of Fiets! stores will increase even further in the future." Fiets! was taken over by Colruyt Group at the beginning of this year and currently has 12 branches in Flanders.

Seven consumer organisations, including the Belgian Test Aankoop and the French UFC Que Choisir, have proposed a citizens' initiative to the European Commission to make the Nutri-Score compulsory throughout Europe. This colour and letter code (from A to E) represents the nutritional value of a product. Since September 2018, it is available on some 20,000 food products at Colruyt Group, and you can consult it via the SmartWithFood and MyColruyt apps, or Colruyt and Collect&Go website. Today you can find the Nutri-Score on 50% of Boni Selection's products. By the autumn of 2020, all products in the range will contain a score. You too can help reach the threshold of one million signatures (at least 15,750 of which in Belgium and 55,500 in France) before 8 May 2020. Scan this QR code and sign:

‘Retailer of the Year Award’ for Colruyt and Dreamland During the 'Retailer of the Year Awards 2019-2020' in September, Colruyt was elected best retail chain and best webshop (with Collect&Go) in the Supermarkets category, just as last year. Dreamland also succeeded itself as the winner in the Toys category. The consumer election of retail consultancy Q&A and real estate specialist Qrf City Retail is the largest consumer election in Belgium. This is the annual fourteenth edition in a row. Between June and September, more than 150,000 Belgian consumers assessed more than 280 chain stores and webshops on ten criteria, such as price, customer-friendliness and assortment.

Telex • Dreamland Marche-en-Famenne reopened on 22 October after unexpectedly closing down two years ago due to problems with the roof structure. The lessor had the necessary repair works carried out. • According to sources in Dutch trade journal Distrifood, Jumbo will not offer a lowest price guarantee in Belgium so as not to start a price war with Colruyt. • BNP Paribas Fortis' commercial mailings will roll off Symeta's digital presses for the next three years. Estimated volume: 500,000 to 3,000,000 documents a year. • Colruyt Group Academy puts its entire offer of internal courses for the year 2020 online. You can sign up on • The Flemish Traffic Foundation (VSV) organised ‘The Big Traffic quiz’ in October. DATS 24 supported the initiative, as it did over the past years, this time with three electric steps to the amount of 600 euros. • enVie, the social organisation which makes soups for Boni Selection from vegetable surpluses celebrated its first anniversary in September. • DATS 24' ISO 14001 certificate was renewed for a 3-year period. It is recognition for the sustainable environmental management in our filling stations. • On Sunday 29 September there was a fire at the warehouse of Dreamland Kuurne after a printer short-circuited. The fire brigade mistakenly went to the Colruyt store a little further, but was still able to put out the fire on time.


Panorama • Brief

Welcome, we're open!

Olen Berlare




Haasrode Tienen Ronse Corbais


Péruwelz La Louvière Fosses-La-Ville


Miserey-Salines Givry

Openings 19/9/19 Colruyt Group Academy. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Liège 23/10/19 Dreamland . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Marche-en-Famenne 25/10/19 DATS 24. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Haasrode 30/10/19 Bio-Planet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Corbais 6/11/19 OKay. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Berlare 13/11/19 Colruyt Prix Qualité . . . . . . . . . . . Miserey-Salines (France)

Reopenings 12/9/19 DATS 24 + CNG . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tienen 27/9/19 DATS 24 (+ CNG). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ronse 20/9/19 OKay (+ Collect&Go). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lennik 26/9/19 Spar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Olen 4/10/19 Spar (new operator). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Erembodegem 11/10/19 OKay. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Fosses-La-Ville 16/10/19 Dreambaby. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kuurne 23/10/19 Colruyt. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Péruwelz 23/10/19 OKay. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Boortmeerbeek 30/10/19 Colruyt Prix Qualité . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Givry (France) 13/11/19 Colruyt. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . La Louvière


Panorama • Brief

GfK summer report: OKay and Colruyt in 1st place OKay and Colruyt came joint first in the general ranking of the GfK summer report. With a score of 8.56 OKay did slightly better than last year (8.28), when it finished in second place behind Colruyt. Colruyt had 8.54 points this year. Makro came 2nd, Delhaize Supermarkets, Lidl and AD Delhaize third. Twice a year, in the summer and in the winter, research bureau GfK interviews some 5,000 Belgian families about their perception of the different supermarkets.

New cooking show Studio 100 and Colruyt In the spring of 2020, Studio 100 and Colruyt will launch a brand new cooking show, for and by children between 8 and 12 years old. This autumn the recordings will take place in the kitchens of Colruyt Group Academy. The recipes will be developed by the Colruyt cooking team. With original recipes, tips, facts and fun ideas, the show aims to encourage children to eat more (seasonal) vegetables. Each episode two children prepare an easy, balanced and cool dish. They are helped by a hostess and in Flanders this will be Marie Verhulst. The programme will be broadcast on Studio 100 TV and via the Studio 100 GO app.

7 new collection points for Newstory

Business Analytics & Insights expanding The importance of data - such as customer data and purchasing behaviour - within retail continues to grow. To ensure the future of our group, we are investing strongly in information, data and performance management. For support, please contact the Business Analytics & Insights (BA&I) division. The BA&I division welcomed about 30 workers from the Business Intelligence department of BP&S. This allows us to join forces and from now on there will be a single point of contact for all support relating to information and insights.

Inhabitants of West and East Flanders will be able to buy and sell second-hand baby and children's stuff even more easily. Our online second-hand platform Newstory opened seven new collection points in Dreamland stores: Ghent, Lede, Veurne, Roeselare, Ostend, Kuurne and Waregem. Dreamland employees keep everything on track with digital support and help from Newstory itself. With the existing meeting points in Bruges, Lochristi and Wilrijk, the number of collection points has risen to ten. Second-hand is trending: in 2019, Newstory's sales figures were 50% higher on average than last year. Newstory continues to organise regional collections in other areas and is looking for extension facilities.

2 new combined heat and power generation installations Our sustainable energy specialist Eoly has commissioned two new combined heat and power plants (CHP). One at distribution centre Ghislenghien and one at Stroppen (Halle). In CHP, electricity is generated using a natural gas engine. The residual heat released by this process is not lost but is used to heat water. Colruyt Group has had such an installation at the Dassenveld distribution centre since 2015. The heat is used to heat up the water from the central heating and the crate washing machine. CHP allows us to produce our own energy in a flexible way, even when there is little wind for our turbines or sun for our solar panels.


Panorama • Brief

XTRA stimulates app use with quiz We want to help all Xtra customers - that includes you - to discover the app's possibilities. That is why we are organising a daily quiz in the app from 1 October to 8 December. Download and use the app, answer the daily quiz question, try your luck every day and win one of the 10 coupons worth € 50. You can redeem them at the Colruyt Group stores and webshops.


DATS 24 opened its 100th charging point in October. From now on, customers of OKay Hoeselt will also be able to charge their vehicles while they do their shopping, a first for OKay. This is a test that will also be held at three other OKay stores: Weelde, Berlare and Hotton. You can also find the charging points at every Bio-Planet and several Colruyt stores. The first DATS 24 quick charger is located at the hydrogen filling station of Dassenveld.

Dreamland launches Click & Collect Dreamland launched a new free service: ‘Click & Collect’. This allows you to pick up an order made in the webshop within three hours in a store of your choice. If the item is in stock, the customer will automatically receive a text message that his/her parcel is ready. Orders after 15.30 will be processed the next morning. The parcels remain available in the shop for three working days.

Fresh baby food at Colruyt At 97 Colruyt stores and Collect&Go pick-up points, you can now find fresh and frozen baby meals. They were developed by two enterprising mothers from their personal experience and lifestyle. Colruyt's market research has shown that parents find the existing range of baby food too onesided. They want to teach their baby to discover new tastes and different textures from an early age. The Pipin Pear chilled organic meals and the Annabel Karmel frozen range contain a varied range: chicken curry, beef stew, fish quiche, etc. The meals contain no preservatives, no additives and the packaging is 100% recyclable. Colruyt's quality department and nutritionists were closely involved in the launch of the baby meals.

New media campaign Bio-Planet Bio-Planet launched a new campaign with the baseline 'There is a planet B'. The aim is to promote our vision of conscious shopping to the general public. If you want to shop in a healthy, respectful and ecological way, you can make a difference together with BioPlanet. The campaign will run until the end of February on TV, social media and in stores.

There is


There is



There is


Meer weten? Bekijk snel de video.

Panorama • Partner

Bart and Ruben Nemegheer of De Aardappelhoeve (The Potato farm): "Potatoes are a simple product, but they need a lot of hard work before they end up on your plate. We like to show what we do, and it's great to feel appreciation on a day like this."

Experience day on the farm

The Potato route was ‘completed’ by about 350 visitors, a third of them children. They followed the whole process, from field to plate, saw hightech machines in action, had fun in workshops and enjoyed fresh chips. "A successful day, thanks to the great turnout, the smooth organisation - with thanks to Colruyt Group Academy and especially the combination of informing, connecting, 'tasting' and enjoying by young and old", concludes Saskia De Block, the Agriculture CoE supervisor.

Text: Chris Tournicourt / Photo: Katleen Vandeneede

On Sunday 29 September it seemed like an Open Company Day at De Aardappelhoeve in Tielt but it was in fact another first. 'The Potato route' invited the first general public to a supplier. For more than twenty years, the West Flemish company has been a loyal partner, which supplies about twenty references of table potatoes to Colruyt, OKay, Spar and Bio-Planet. "An ideal partner for this first experience day", says buyer Rony Neufkens. "The company is innovative and unique, because it grows, processes, packages and transports potatoes. We share the same values and together want to provide better information to consumers and connect with the producer."


Panorama • The interview

Fifth year of market day In a beautiful white farm in Overijse. That is where Cru started in November 2014 as a market for quality products with a pure flavour. After Ghent and Antwerp a fourth location in the Flemish periphery of Brussels is on the radar. Cru has had some growing pains. "Pride and perseverance are the best way to summarise the past five years", says Jo Spiegeleer, business unit manager since 2016. The first five years of Cru, how do you look back?

Jo • "Cru began as a dream of visionaries. A company needs dreamers, who at some point just make a decision and are not afraid to jump, even if nothing is in place yet. After two years, Cru entered the management phase, much needed to guarantee the existence and future growth of Cru. Initially, our costs were higher than our income. In other words, we had to become profitable and save costs to give Cru some breathing space again. In that phase, we all worked seriously on our organisation. Without affecting the quality of our products, our customer service and our segments. It took a lot of perseverance."

Is management difficult?

"Yes, it is. A manager has to be realistic and your job, in a way, is to pierce the visionaries' dream. That's hard, it hurts, because it's about a relationship with people. With the employees, with the partners. Transparent communication is crucial. Everyone has to go for it, otherwise it doesn't work."

What is Cru doing to improve its cost-effectiveness?

"More sales, lower purchase costs, lower cost of transport, less waste, process optimisation, etc. Growing from one market to three meant


we centralised a number of things. Baker Jan and his colleagues now make the dough at Fine Food in Stroppen. From there the dough goes to the different sites, where it is baked. The chefs in Overijse take care of the homemade preparations for the three markets. Lasagne, beef stew, salmon salad, etc. In Ghent our florists make the bouquets for Antwerp and Overijse. This allows us to guarantee the quality, the recipe and the flavour of our products, regardless of the market you are shopping at. Centralising is more efficient and we thus create expansion possibilities for the future."

In other words, the employees grew with Cru?

"Largely, yes. Based on their talent, knowledge and passion for the products, various employees who started at Cru moved on to the supporting services for example. Cedric first worked in the fruit and veg segment at the market. He is now responsible for the logistics and forecasts of this segment. Others became buyers or experience managers, or made the switch to another market. Most Cru employees are multifunctional today, and increasingly the work is crosssegment. Hats off for the experience managers who manage ten segments every day. When our fish expert goes on holiday, he can't simply be replaced by a student worker. We draw up a holiday planning across the markets."

"For a long time our costs were higher than our income. We made many changes to give Cru fresh oxygen."


Panorama • The interview

Has the cooperation with the partners evolved?

"In the beginning we went to the farmers ourselves or they brought their products to the markets. Today, the majority of our products are delivered to our logistics partner, a distribution centre in Mollem, from where the various products leave in one delivery to the three locations. More efficient for us and easier for the partners, which in turn translates into cost savings. Some products are so fresh they are delivered directly to the market, such as Van Tricht cheese and fresh fish. Our assortment involves a certain complexity."

recommends a specific wine to me, I'm already thinking about how I'm going to enjoy it together with my father-inlaw. And we're not really expensive if you consider the quality of the products we sell."

The Cru assortment varies according to the season.

"Because of the uniqueness and freshness of our products, we have to take into account what nature gives us at a certain moment. For our tomato passata you need quality tomatoes and for our applesauce you need extraordinarily good apples. Since I

Text: Valerie Janssens / Photos: Katleen Vandeneede

"My favourite Cru-products are granola, dried sausage, pickles and bread. I've usually already eaten half the loaf by the time I'm home."


What makes Cru's products special?

"Cru's mission is to do the ordinary extraordinarily well. Authentic flavours and few ingredients. Our steak tartar is so fresh, it won't stay good in your fridge for three days. There's no point in Cru selling the same as the other Colruyt Group store formats. We notice that our customers make emotional purchases rather than rational ones. They are looking for products to indulge themselves or someone else. When a Cru employee of the drinks segment

joined Cru, I have a completely different view of the weather and the climate. When I used to walk to my car through the rain, you could find me swearing. Now I wonder what impact the rain has on crops, animals and farmers. I'm closer to the essence of what food really is."

experience the quality of the products by offering them as tasters. And we regularly give our loyal customers a gift to taste at home. A product from the market, such as croquettes or beer. Our customers love this and tell their friends about it. Every week, Cru has 250 newly registered customers, i.e. customers who apply for a Cru card. Some of them also shop at other Colruyt Group store formats, but we also bring in many new customers. My dream is to join Xtra. But as a small organisation, Cru is not ready for that yet. We must first gain experience before we take the next step."

Is Cru ready for the future?

"It has been tough, but all the foundations have been laid to become profitable. Now we are going to invest again. We have a fourth market in mind in the Flemish periphery of Brussels, to the west. We would like to open it by the summer of 2021. This location, on the other side of the ring road to Overijse, has been on our radar for a long time. The fact that I live in this area, is just a coincidence (laughs). I am very proud of what we have already realised with Cru and believe in the future."

Do you also have promotions?

"We believe it is important to honour and appreciate the value of our products. That is why you will not find price discounts at Cru. However, we do allow our customers to personally

Curious what Cru Overijse looks like today? Follow the virtual tour on

File: Colruyt India


Colruyt culture with an Indian touch


Sports, games and social work


Cricket for/by the blind


Panorama • File

Colruyt India: the best of both worlds Colruyt Group established its IT department in Hyderabad in 2007. About 450 Indian colleagues support us every day. Why are Indians so good at IT and how does a company from Halle end up in Hyderabad? We asked division manager Hari Subramanian.

Around the globe, India is known for its IT services. What's the reason for this?

Hari - "By a concurrence of circumstances in the early 90s . The Indian economy began to open up to the rest of the world. At the same time, many international companies wanted to move their IT services abroad. Add to this the fact that India has a huge Englishspeaking population with analytical skills, because many have studied engineering. That’s where the click happened. The IT sector steadily developed into one of the main sectors in India that employs about 4 million Indians."

What is the strength of this Indian workforce?

"Their flexibility and adaptability. In the IT sector, you often travel to other countries. You quickly have to adapt to the culture of a country or company. I myself have worked in Australia, the United States and in Europe for example."


Why did Colruyt decide to go to India in 2007?

"Colruyt wanted to completely rewrite all its sales, purchasing and logistics software. Our IT subsidiary at the time, Infoco, was unable to fill about 150 vacancies. To deal with the critical shortage of qualified IT specialists we first worked with two local partners in India. We know Colruyt prefers to keep its knowledge in-house and after a positive feasibility study, the story of Colruyt India started."

Why did we choose Hyderabad as a base?

"Various cities were considered. In the end, we chose Hyderabad, the fifth largest city in India with nearly 12 million inhabitants. The city had a good infrastructure and has a mild, less damp climate. Apart from three hot months it is bearable for Belgian colleagues travelling to India. In 2009, we started building our own office, which was completely finished in 2011. Today,

60% of these employees are employed by Colruyt, some 450 in total. The rest of the building is leased to other companies. But the capacity is there to grow. That building is really a strong statement by Colruyt Group: we are here to stay, in the long run. It helps us to find talented employees."

Where are your roots?

"In Madurai, a city in the south of India. I graduated as a civil engineer and worked at Tata, an IT multinational and one of the biggest companies in India. Even then I was regularly in contact with Colruyt. In 2013, Peter Vanbellingen asked me to manage Colruyt India. I moved my whole family to Hyderabad. Our Belgian connection will always be there, because my son was born at the Sint-Maria hospital in Halle."

Why do our Indian colleagues choose Colruyt?

"They appreciate the positive working atmosphere and open communication. The healthy work-life balance also plays a role: no-one takes his work home. No e-mails, no telephone calls after hours. Our company values and culture are a connecting factor, regardless of whether you work in Belgium, India, France or Hong Kong. A very powerful thing."

What do you think is the main difference between Belgium and India? "Belgian society has a strong focus on oneself as an individual, I've noticed. India has more of a ‘we-culture’. At work, Belgians are more serious, whereas in India we like to keep it more light-hearted - without losing sight of efficiency of course. The Belgian structure and discipline are complementary to our flexibility and openness for change. "Our work culture is like an Indian movie. It should have fun, songs, dance, colour. It all blends in beautifully. Every month we organise colourful events, fun theme days, etc. It’s what keeps us going. I really believe that we have found our sweet spot, a

"We also offer support in trade activities. We are examining whether there is a market for Boni Selection in India, for example."

mix between Colruyt culture and Indian culture. The best of both worlds."

Where is Colruyt India at in terms of sustainability?

"A mentality change is starting to grow in India. We are the first and only company in the neighbourhood that has solar panels on the roof of the building. We use low-energy lighting, recycle our waste water, install green areas, try to avoid plastic, stimulate our employees to use energy, water and paper efficiently etc. So I guess you could say we are pioneers in India as well. But we still have a lot to learn from Colruyt Group and Belgium."

What is Colruyt India's mission? "We distilled specific objectives from the Colruyt Group and BP&S mission statements for Colruyt India. We want to help our company achieve projects within the specified timing, budget and quality standards. Annually, we are involved in some 300 small and large projects."

What is your added value to the group? "Our skilled employees help our company grow. The costs we save here can be reinvested. For example, our Indian colleagues also worked on Xtra and Supply Chain Food, projects

that make a real difference for our customers. And we play an important role in keeping our infrastructure and activities going. We make use of the time difference so that our stores and distribution centres are not disrupted. There is a really efficient cooperation with our colleagues here in Belgium."

What does the future hold?

"We will just continue to increase our employees' craftsmanship to be ready, to meet the new needs of Colruyt Group. We will look into how we can contribute even more to our BP&S1, BA&I2 and R&D&I3 departments. We also try to assist in commercial activities. For example, we are examining with Colex and Colimpo whether we can export Indian products to Belgium. And vice versa: is there a market for Boni Selection in India? We have already conducted extensive surveys to assess the interest of our own employees. To be continued …" 1

Business Processes & Systems Business Analytics & Insights 3 Research, Development & Innovation 2

"The construction of our office in 2009 was a strong statement: we are here to stay, for the long run."


Sports, games and social work At Colruyt India, they're not only cracking at IT. Through various initiatives, they are also committed to the well-being of workers and the people around them. This is expressed in sports, games and social work. Khelruyt: exercise is healthy Khelruyt is Colruyt India's sport committee. Throughout the year, it encourages colleagues to put their best sports foot forward. "When we at Colruyt India look for a name for something, we often ask our employees. One of them came up with 'Khelruyt'. No, that's not how we Indians pronounce our company name. 'Khel' means 'game' in Hindi", says division manager Hari Subramanian. At the office, they play indoor games such as table tennis, chess and carrom, a typically Indian game that is a mix of billiards and shuffleboard. They often organise tournaments with real trophies and certificates, an important aspect of Indian culture. Employees also take part in external games or competitions with other companies. Badminton, volleyball, football, tennis, cycling, marathon, etc., Colruyt India regularly brings home prizes! The main attraction among the outdoor games is the 'Colruyt Premier League Cricket Tournament'.


Another typical Indian sport is 'kabbadi', a combination of wrestling and rugby that has existed for centuries. "Super popular in India and South Asia, we are even world champions. But a little too physical to play among colleagues," laughs Hari.

Fun@work 'A team that plays together, stays together.' That's the slogan of the Fun@ work programme, linked to Khelruyt. Colruyt India strongly believes in team spirit and teamwork. Our employees regularly meet up to play together and enjoy themselves. Briefly escaping the daily routine. Fun@work regularly organises game nights to play games we used to play when we were younger. Hari: "They take you back to your childhood and provide a positive boost of energy. I sincerely believe, no matter how simple, these things really have a big impact on our employees. And at the same time it is a great opportunity to show their talents."

For charity And then there's CISR: ‘Colruyt India Social Responsibility’. Our Indian branch would like to give something back to the environment and society it operates in. A lot of Indian colleagues do charity work at local organisations. They spend a lot of their free time there and follow up on the project from A to Z. "This is so much more than just financial support. Our employees play an active role and make sure the funds are spent usefully", says Hari. Some examples of initiatives: scholarships for young people, medical support for the underprivileged, funds for natural disasters, blood collection drives, etc. Text: Niels Goossens / Photos: Ravi Varma

Panorama • File

Khelruyt is Colruyt India's sports committee. 'Khel' means 'game' in Hindi.

A game of cricket with/for the blind Colruyt India organised a cricket match on Sunday 22 September. But not just any match. They played ‌ a team of blind people and poor-sighted. CABT was the opponent: the Cricket Association for the Blind in Telangana. Telangana is the Indian state the city of Hyderabad is part of. The purpose of this good cause? To give blind and poor-sighted people the opportunity to participate in sport, to get to know new people and to involve them in society. It gives them confidence, teaches them to be independent and to make the most of their difficult situation. The game was held on the cricket ground of The Countdown Studio in Gandipet, a village just outside Hyderabad.

The event attracted a lot of spectators and ended with a yummy piece of cake!

How is it played? The rules are largely the same as with normal cricket. The white cricket ball is bigger and contains a rattle that makes a noise so that the blind players can hear when the ball is near. The wickets in the game are also larger and fluorescent. Players are divided into three groups, from completely blind to poor-sighted, and are given coloured sweatbands (white, blue and red) for easy identification during the game.


Office bus 2.0 Our office bus was given new colours last summer. The new stickers put the Colruyt Group logo and the slogan ‘Hier wordt anders gewerkt’ (We work differently here) more prominently in the spotlight. A deliberate choice to strengthen our employer brand - our reputation as a company. The bus travels about 80 kilometres a day along the E40 and the Brussels Ring and is now even more eye-catching.


Panorama • In pictures


Panorama • P&O corner

Responding to the labour market People & Organisation has created a new strategic position: recruitment manager. But what exactly does he/she do? 3 questions for Danièle Langer, one of the 8 colleagues in the team. In what phase of the recruitment process do you come into the picture?

"Right at the beginning, just before the selection manager. Nowadays, it is no longer enough just to place an advertisement to attract a large number of candidates. Our mission is to profile Colruyt Group on the labour market so that we are the first choice for potential candidates."

How do you work?

"We have defined a total of ten target groups on the labour market and we divided them within our 8-strong team.

I myself am involved in sales profiles: for the stores and for the butchers. I collect as much information as possible about the target group and work out a recruitment strategy for a period of three years".

What is your strategy?

"In terms of content, I focus on Colruyt Group's values, on the needs of my target group and on points for improvement within the recruitment process. I work closely with the stores themselves and with our marketing departments. In this way, everything runs quickly and efficiently."

New regional office in Kortrijk On 14 October we opened a new regional office in Kortrijk. After Denderhoutem and Merelbeke this is the third in a year's time. This shared office is located in an office building at President Kennedypark 6, close to the E17 exit. There are 20 workstations. 20 parking spaces are reserved on the parking for Colruyt Group and there is a big bicycle shed. Questions? You can find more information in the FAQ: doc889.199 or with building manager Dieter D’Haeyer.

Car Free Day Thursday 19 September was Car Free Day. Colruyt Group called on all colleagues to leave the car at home and to come to work on foot, by bike, by public transport or by car-pooling. Many colleagues shared photos of their experience. At the Ghislenghien and Ollignies distribution centres, we distributed more than 500 carpool flyers during the shift change. We also did some 20 test drives with our zero-emission cars and electric bikes. During the Mobility Week, 40 new registrations were made on our carpool platform. This brings the carpool group to about 400 colleagues.

4,624 22

This is the number of colleagues who got flu jabs at work last year. Our current flu campaign is slowly coming to an end. You still have time until the end of November for a free flu jab at the doctor or nurse. The remaining dates and locations are available on Portal via doc521.196.

Our profession• Team spirit

At the service of safety ... Safety, we work on it every day. In the distribution centres of OKay and Bio-Planet in Laekebeek (halls 5 and 6) 14 workers became security ambassadors a few months ago. They are a contact for colleagues, stimulate alertness and share their experience. Six ambassadors talk about their new role.


Our profession • Team spirit

‌ and of the colleagues

Fila Bobanza Nzele

order picker and instructor "The role of safety ambassador fits perfectly with the instructor in me. In training courses, safety is an essential point. We want to make our colleagues aware of risk situations. My biggest problem as an ambassador is communication. How do my colleagues understand my message? The process is sometimes difficult because they don't always understand our role. But we mustn't give up. If someone reacts badly, I try to understand why. Communication is something you have to work on (laughs)."


Isabelle Junker order picker and quality inspector

"I was immediately interested in the role of safety ambassador because I think safety is important. During our work, we always pay a lot of attention to safety, especially the points discussed in the briefing. We also take the initiative ourselves: we spontaneously discuss risk situations with the colleagues involved. Our advice is generally appreciated. Every month we have a meeting with all the ambassadors. We talk about the reactions of colleagues, we exchange ideas ... and our suggestions are always welcome."

Jason Botti order picker

"I am convinced that ambassadors can contribute to better safety for all. I've worked in construction, I've seen some serious accidents. That shouldn't happen. I try to use humour when I make comments. For some people it works reasonably well, for others it does not. But I don't regret my choice. My goal is safety."

Text: Vincent Galuszka / Photo: Katleen Vandeneede

Kevin Robert

order picker, instructor and responsible for student workers "I love people and I like to make sure they are safe. I knew the moment my boss suggested it to me. I get along well with my colleagues and that helps, my comments are always welcome. We have to be careful in an environment such as ours. If we see a problem, we need to take immediate action and make sure it doesn't happen again. Most colleagues can easily accept my comments and thank me for my commitment. This new role fully meets my expectations."

Komla Doe

OcĂŠane Bajeux

"Safety comes naturally to me. I often talked to my colleagues about safety, for example about paying attention to others, looking ahead, respecting distances, etc. When the results of our efforts were presented after a few months, I was really satisfied. After all, our role as ambassador has helped to reduce the number of accidents at work. Thanks to our efforts, safety has become an important part of our daily lives. And colleagues know that they can feel safe at their workplace."

"We have to take care of each other, which is why I wanted to be a safety ambassador. We are seeing progress, the number of work-related accidents is decreasing. Some colleagues correct their behaviour. Unfortunately, not everyone takes us seriously. I notice that my comments have less impact because I am a young woman. But in general, more and more colleagues are open to our health and safety work."

order picker and quality inspector

order picker, quality inspector and instructor


Our profession • Innovation at Field Service

Driving closet takes on urban jungle For our technicians, the busy cities with their underground car parks and narrow streets are a little less daunting these days. Their secret weapon: a smaller van, with the same amount of material in it. Meet our mobile closet.

Transporting air OKay Compact in Brussels, Cru Ghent at the Kouter, Spar Compact in Leuven, etc. Our IT technicians at Field Service are increasingly going into cities. With their vans, they venture into the busy traffic and narrow streets. But underground car parks are often a no-go zone. "With our large models, we simply can't get in", says team co-ordinator Marc Walravens (on the picture, with blue shirt). "They are so high our technicians can stand completely upright in them. Handy, but not in cities. Moreover, this wide corridor also means that we transport a lot of air unnecessarily. A colleague dropped the idea of smaller vans. At first I thought he was crazy. Do you know how much material and work equipment we have to carry around?"

"Our smaller van is cheaper, lighter, more pleasant to drive and it can carry as much material" - technician Christophe

Tailor-made "I only started considering this idea later. Compare it with a kitchen: if you have a lot of cupboards, you'll fill them up in no time. In a small kitchen you can store just as much if you organise everything neatly. Together with our partner Sortimo, we started developing a storage system with long pull-out drawers. Tailor-made for Colruyt Group. I even went to the workshop in Schaarbeek for some adjustments during production."


Christophe Wijns (with grey T-shirt) has been a technician for 22 years. He knows better than anyone which machines and materials have to be taken on the road. "Servers, switches, routers, barcode readers, cables, lights, screws, bolts, interface screens for the parking, etc. It was a puzzle getting everything in, but the result is great and nicely arranged. The van must be 95% full."

Cheaper, lighter, more pleasant A small van has its advantages. Enough to convince department head Matthias Roels. "To start with, it's cheaper to buy and consumption is lower. It also weighs a lot less. This allows us to take heavier material with us and still stay below the maximum of 3.5 tonnes on the weighbridge. Not having to look for a parking space also saves time. And that's important during urgent interventions, such as a checkout breakdown." And does it drive well, Christophe? "Very nice to drive. Especially for long distances. Compact, manoeuvrable, ideal for the city. Less noise, too. A drawback is there is little or no space left when we need to transport something extra. But we're going to try to solve that with 'drop zones', for example local stores where we have some space to temporarily store material." Text: Niels Goossens Photos: Katleen Vandeneede

That's clever! The back door forms an awning, useful for when it rains.

No more high central aisle, but pull-out drawers everywhere.

The small van (on the right) has been extensively tested and approved. The large models (on the left) are now gradually being replaced.


Our profession • Zoom

Welcome to the Cité Ardente Our Colruyt Group Academy in Liège has moved, and how! From a location without kitchens in an airport hotel to a brand-new building in the city centre, right next to the recently opened Bio-Planet.

With a surface area of 800 m², the new Academy is a lot bigger than the previous one. Result: a more extensive offer of inspiring workshops. This autumn for instance, about 200 will be organised. Approximately 100 people can be welcomed at the same time.

19 September was party time: the brand-new Academy was officially opened with a pleasant reception by night. Many curious Liège locals checked it out. Academy Liège is located along the Boulevard Frankignoul, close to the city centre. Easy to reach and plenty of (free) parking. Bio-Planet Liège is a few metres away. It opened its doors earlier this year on 19 June.


Colruyt Group Academy has been in Liège since the beginning of 2014. It rented a location in the hotel Park Inn by Radisson, directly opposite the airport. But there was no kitchen. Whereas cooking workshops are essential in the offer and there was a lot of demand in Liège. In the two fully equipped kitchens, they can now go their culinary way!

Local co-ordinator Fabrice Servais and regional co-ordinator Aurélie Seutin are the face of the Academy. "We're very proud to finally be open," says Aurélie. "I am eagerly looking forward to the delicious dishes of our participants during the cooking workshops and to the laughter of children who come to celebrate their birthdays with friends. For me, it's all about contact with people. I hope my enthusiasm is contagious and everyone will soon feel at home here."

Text: Niels Goossens / Photos: Bram Belet and Katleen Vandeneede


Our profession • Travel story

Visiting Brazilian coffee farmers Brazil, country of samba, carnival, caipirinha ... and coffee! To find out more about the production process of 'cafĂŠ do Brasil', master coffee roaster Kris Durant and buyer Carine De Cock travelled to the world's largest coffee producer last summer. They visited small family farmers as well as big processing companies.

Coffee is grown in the 'coffee belt', the tropical area between the equator and the tropic of Capricorn. Brazil is extremely progressive and different from coffee producing countries in Central America, Asia and Africa. There they harvest by hand, while Brazilian plantations are flatter and harvested (semi) mechanically. They like to experiment with new processing techniques. Agricultural engineers guide farmers in increasing their productivity and quality. "As a buyer, it is useful to see the differences between production countries with my own eyes", says Carine. "Why is one coffee more expensive than another? About three years ago we visited El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala. The next trip might be China, which is going the same way as Vietnam. Ten years ago they didn't produce any coffee there, now they are the second largest producer in the world." Kris: "I was very interested in how the coffee is grown and processed there. Because the final taste in your coffee cup is determined by every step in the process."


"The coffee plantations here look a lot like vineyards, and coffee berries look like grapes. Sometimes I felt like I was in France," says Carine. "The plantations reach as far as you can see. Brazil is 276 times the size of Belgium, you only realize that when you've been there. In the space of a week, we travelled no less than 1,500 kilometres by car. Very intensive and not just a pleasure trip."

"A ripe coffee berry looks like a cherry and contains one or two coffee beans," explains Kris. "Due to global warming, the harvest is starting earlier and earlier. This year, the coffee bush blossomed several times due to irregular rainfall. And that resulted in coffee berries from unripe green to ripe red and - as it should be - dried black."

Top 5 coffee ­producing countries 1. Brazil – 35 % 2. Vietnam – 14 % 3. Indonesia – 7 % 4. Colombia – 6 % 5. Ethiopia – 5 %

"Brazilians are very hospitable", says Kris. "We were even welcomed on one occasion with a flying Belgian flag. But the victory of the Red Devils at the World Cup against the Seleção is still a sensitive issue here (laughs).

Text: Niels Goossens / Photos: submitted by Kris Durant

Colruyt Group is the only retailer in Belgium with its own coffee roasting house. We buy the beans when they are still green, they turn brown when they are roasted. Kris: "For Graindor we buy as many as 35 different varieties, the majority of which come from Brazil. The 'Santos arabica' (named after the port from which all coffee is exported, Ed.) is the basis for all our blends."


Our profession • Tête-à-tête

A symphony of The usually separate worlds of wine and beer meet at the Colruyt of Dendermonde. Salespeople Willem Downy and Ellen Elaut are both certified tasters. One colleague can call himself a zythologist, the other a sommelier. Connoisseurs of beer and wine, make sure you walk a fine line. What drink do you recommend at dinner?

Is Belgium a beer country or a wine country?

Willem • "Beer!"

Willem • "Belgium is a beer country, but not because we have so many beers. We know the art of making a high-level brew. We have a very good yeast culture, we have many beers that are brewed in balance. Not too bitter and not too sweet."

Ellen • "Wine!" Willem • "I appreciate a good wine, but I will always drink beer at the table. No matter what dish." Ellen • "We sometimes tease each other in the store. We'll choose a product to discuss it. Does it go well with beer or wine?" Willem • "With cheese, beer is the best combination." Ellen • "I don't agree." Willem • "Cheese puts a greasy film on the tongue, beer has acids and bitterness to break through those fats." Ellen • "With cheese you can choose a wine with very low tannins. Many people choose a bordeaux, but that's not a good match. It's better to choose white wines. It also depends on the type of cheese." Willem • "With beer you can look for flavours that are both in the dish and in the beer. Or contrasts: salt-sweet or acid-bitter. If you find the right contrast, you get nice taste explosions in your mouth." Ellen • "That's also possible with wine (laughs)."

What's so special about tasting? Ellen • "The scents and colours, the importance of geography and styles, the personal approach of each winemaker. I like that very much. I look at the tears, the viscosity of the wine in the glass. I can tell by the colour whether it's older or younger wine. Colours also indicate a particular grape." Willem • "I also make a visual analysis. The colour is important of course. But when I pour, I also look at the froth. Because the head protects the beer, it holds the aromas. When I smell, I look for floral or spicy scents. I also try to detect faulty parts with my nose. If the beer smells stale, something is wrong." Ellen • "I first smell the primary aromas. Are they fruity or flowery? I then swirl the wine for the secondary and tertiary aromas. They tell me more about the evolution of the wine. Then I taste. There is so much to discover in a glass of wine." Willem • "That also applies to beer. Does the beer taste fruity, hoppy or bitter? Was it in barrels? Do I taste wood or is it a slight touch of vanilla? I use my eyes, my nose, my tongue, the back of my palate, etc."


Ellen • "Belgium is an up and coming wine country. I think we will go a long way. The only problem is that the price is still too high, because of the high labour costs. But the expertise is there. Entre-Deux-Monts is a talented wine company. Château Bon Baron also makes a top wine. We also offer these in our First-class wines webshop." Willem • "I have various favourites. In the category of stout beers, I like Black Albert by De Struise Brouwers, with chocolate, coffee and raisin flavours. Gulden Draak Brewmaster by Brewery Van Steenberge, made in whisky barrels, is also great. And I'm from Wichelen, which means I'm also a fan of a René Blond. It's no coincidence that my daughter's name is Renée."

How do you use that knowledge in the store? Willem • "Our customers feel our love for beer. They can tell by the attention I give to the shelf. I have a beer of the month, make posters and give tips for foodpairing. Customers know they can come to me for advice." Ellen • "We are also good at listening to our customers and responding to their questions. That's how Willem and I make the difference. We love each other's profession. If he's not there and I put the beer on the shelves, I'll do it the way he likes it." Willem • "There is no difference between us in terms of passion and product knowledge. Every evening I taste a new beer. I'll put on a blind fold and my wife chooses a beer for me." Ellen • "Kinky." Willem • "I can't stop when I start talking about beer. It drives my friends nuts. My wedding ring is engraved with the words ‘Love is brewed’. For me, everything is about beer." Ellen • "We're the same in that area, but in my case it's all about wine. But after a whole day of tasting, I sometimes prefer a refreshing beer in the evening."

flavours "Beer of the month, posters, tips for foodpairing: customers feel the love of beer in our store" "Belgium is an up and coming Willem Dauwe – zythologist wine country. I think we will go a long way."

Text: Pascal Laureyn / Photo: Katleen Vandeneede

Ellen Elaut - sommelier


Our profession • Retail Partners on study tour

Sparring in the Highlands

Text: Sara De Decker / Photos: Retail Partners Colruyt Group

In September, more than 100 independent Spar entrepreneurs flew to Scotland for a memorable five-day event of haggis, whiskey and bagpipes. To get to know each other better, to exchange experiences and to forge a strong bond. Management assistant and organiser on duty Ann Leuckx tells us how she experienced the trip.


A study trip? "Yes, although it is more than a ‘study tour’. Every three to four years we organise a trip for our Spar entrepreneurs. This year, our theme was sustainability and health. But this time, more than ever, it was all about partnership and connection. Our intention is for the entrepreneurs to get to know each other better and to exchange experiences. Also with the internal people of Retail Partners Colruyt Group. And all this in a relaxed atmosphere, with plenty of time and space to have fun."

"Our independent entrepreneurs save points in various ways during the year. For example, when they purchase certain volumes of products. They can then exchange these points for certain advantages, for example to go on a study trip. This year, 64 stores signed up."

Across the Channel "Why Scotland? Four years ago we went to Spain. It rained cats and dogs, days on end. So this time we wanted to go somewhere where people don't expect beautiful weather (laughs). In Scotland everyone is prepared for rain. But in the end it only rained on the last day."

Soaking up the Scottish atmosphere "For some entrepreneurs, this is their only holiday of the year. My goal: meet their wildest expectations. We wanted to give them unique experiences that they wouldn't normally have if they went away on their own trip. The full Scottish experience. That's why I went prospecting a year in advance. Visiting locations, sitting together with possible partners, choosing hotels. For a group of 150 people this is not so easy. A real puzzle."

"But honestly: everything went great. We took speedboats on Loch Lomond and drove with jeeps through the Highlands. A visit to a whisky distillery, high tea in a beautiful library, an iPad rally through Edinburgh, etc. Surprises were planned every day. You also noticed the togetherness in the group grow. The atmosphere during the Highland Games, for example, was fantastic. The icing on the cake was the posh farewell evening. All men dressed up in full Scottish costume, with kilt. The women all wore a black dress and a tartan sash. The decor was magical too: an old church converted into an incredibly beautiful event hall."

Goosebump moment "We organised our study day and workshop in the Hopetoun House country house. Afterwards, everyone was standing on the main stairs in front, waiting for a group photo, or that's what we told them. But our entrepreneurs didn't know we'd

arranged something extra for them. Suddenly ten bagpipers appeared from behind the corner. Goose bumps. Many people had a tear in their eye, including myself."

Sponsored by "The study trip is partly paid for by sponsors. This year Coca-Cola, Mars and Bacardi. In exchange, two or three of their employees can join us for a few days. They can then make contacts with our entrepreneurs and show their brand in a fun, unique way." "You shouldn't underestimate how useful these trips are. They're an investment, that's right. But when you see what you create with it... that's really unique. Precisely because we work with independent entrepreneurs, who all have their own approach, ideas and vision. It's not easy to get them all on the same page. In terms of connection and group feeling these trips are great."

"Caber toss, hammer throw, tugof-war, etc. During the Highland games, the competitive edge of our entrepreneurs was obvious." - Ann


Our profession • First-class wines

First-class wines run in the family The wine flows abundantly and you bump into dozens of Colruyt Group employees... Where am I? At the Mega tasting session of our First-class wines webshop! It was organised in October in Beveren, Kortrijk, Nivelles and Alsemberg. We stopped at the latter location and gathered four enthusiastic testimonies.

Driving force behind the scenes Wine consultant Koen Grootjans (left) is one of the driving forces behind the Mega tasting sessions. "My fellow consultants and I select the wines together with our buyers, we choose the locations and organise everything behind the scenes. Our customers were able to taste 102 wines from a price range of 7 to 72 euros per bottle. Of course we have all the classics from France, Italy and Spain, but also from emerging wine countries such as Georgia. Our Georgian producer is here too! Belgian wines are also trending and the quality is getting better every year. At the first tasting in Beveren, the 90 bottles we had were sold out in no time at all. We had about 800 visitors and generated a record turnover. An enthusiastic customer even took two full carts of bordeaux wine home with him for a party!"


From glasses to corkscrews At their autumnal booth Lieven Beullens (on the right) and Nico Dewit showed Collishop's assortment of wine accessories. "At a Mega tasting session, you find real wine lovers. An important target audience within this range. At our booth, for example, they could win a wine storage cabinet worth 1,149 euros. Did you know that we have no less than 96 different wine glasses in our range? In addition to corkscrews, wine racks, sets for appetisers, etc. At Collishop, we recently established the 'internal account management' service. Our objective: create more crossfertilisation between the different Colruyt Group brands. This co-operation with Great wines is a great example of this."

Wine workshops in the spotlight Is there a Colruyt Group Academy near the Mega tasting session location? If so, a CGA representative will put our extensive offer of wine workshops in the spotlight. In Alsemberg, Laurent Vannieuwenhuyze, local co-ordinator of Academy Halle, took care of this. "Wine for beginners or advanced, bubbles, cooking with wine, etc. I try to introduce the visitors to our offer in Halle and in Uccle. I give them a list of all the workshops that are planned in the coming months and our general programme booklet with all the other themes. My goal? Attract new participants of course!"

At a strategic location in the middle of the hall we meet fresh promotor Freddy Beckers. "After a few glasses even if they are small tasters - the wine can quickly get to your head. What's better than a piece of cheese to line the stomach? In the past we didn't serve snacks, it's really at our customers' request. At the wine tasting stands you will also find bread to neutralise your taste buds." Here in Alsemberg Freddy is at your service, at other locations you will find other regional promoters. They are assisted by salespeople from neighbouring shops. Including Christophe from Grimbergen and Robin from Dilbeek. "We serve a selection of seven cheeses. We provide more information about each cheese and we also advise them which wine to pair it with. Occasionally we need a cheat sheet (laughs) ." And Freddy, what's your favourite? "Our new Camembert based on buffalo milk. Nice to munch on, or melted on a pizza: heavenly!"

Text: Niels Goossens / Photos: Katleen Vandeneede

Lining the stomach


Our profession • My workplace

A job that can count Counter in the hand, cushion for the knees, bump cap on the head... and count away! At least once a year, the 45 employees of the inventory team count all the articles in every Colruyt Group store. "This creates an accurate picture of the stock", says co-ordinator Carla Flamez. "We count everything in the aisles, on the super, in transit, even the stamps in the social rooms. This creates an accurate picture of the stock in a store. After all, in a year's time, there will be a difference between our inventory on paper and the inventory in practice. This concerns the theft of goods, wrong deliveries, mistakes at the checkout, waste not registered correctly..." With their blue-grey aprons, they are a striking appearance in our stores. "Customers often ask us questions

about products or discounts. Even though we don't know anything about it, we always try to help." "We work from Monday to Thursday, 9 hours a day. Early in the morning, we start counting with our ergonomic hand scanner. Each inventory worker has his own box, including gloves to count the frozen foods and a colourful knee cushion, for the lowest shelves. For the top shelves we use cherry pickers with which we drive through the shop. We have to put on our bump cap for this: a hardened cap that protects our heads from hanging lamps, the theft control passage or other obstacles that you sometimes encounter on the ceiling in old shops" (theft control passage = a hanging platform above the aisles for observation purposes). Text: Niels Goossens / Photos: Katleen Vandeneede


Between you and me • The Globe

New home in our Colruyt store

Our emergency route Shirjan - "It was no longer safe for me in Afghanistan in 2012 so I fled. After a long detour along Iran, Turkey, Greece, Italy and France I arrived 40 days later at a parking lot near Brussels-North. The next day I applied for asylum. And today I am officially Belgian." Qadir • "I followed my brother in 2015. I was only 15 when I arrived here. Fortunately, Shirjan was able to show me around and help me with the language."

Our challenge Shirjan • "We had to start all over again. You end up in a place where you have never been, know nothing or nobody and do not speak the language. The first time I went outside in Brussels, I only dared to walk straight ahead. I was afraid I wasn't going to be able to return to my sleeping place (smiles)." "Language really is a barrier in the beginning. I actually learned Dutch by working. Talking and asking questions is the best and fastest way to learn. In the beginning I often said 'yes', even though I didn't fully understand it. It wasn't until I spoke Dutch pretty well that I started going to evening school. It's really not easy. Dutch is a very difficult language. I thought I would never be able to do it."

work here. I missed the social contact with colleagues and customers in the greenhouse." Qadir • "Last year I started working at Colruyt Haacht. At my brother's recommendation, yes. His manager also put in a good word for me. I love doing it."

Our family Shirjan • "Our mother and sister are still in Afghanistan. At the beginning of this year, I went to visit them. It doesn't always work out. It is not easy to get there. And it's often not safe enough. When I go outside, I never go alone. It's better to stay inside in the evening. Not exactly a holiday feeling."

You can't always worry. I have many dreams. We'll see what time brings."

Belgium, for me is… Shirjan • "One big culture shock (laughs). You have to adapt in every sense. Time is very important here for instance. If you start working at 6.00 a.m., you have be there at 6.00 a.m. on the dot. Rather too early than too late. Eating with a knife and fork was also new. In Afghanistan it is perfectly normal to eat with your fingers. But here people will stare."

Text: Sara De Decker / Photo: Katleen Vandeneede

With more than 80 different nationalities, Colruyt Group is a multicultural mini society. Brothers Shirjan (30) and Qadir Amani (19) are Afghan refugees who came to Belgium, three years apart from each other. And they both found a new home at Colruyt.

Qadir • “We do like the food. At home we usually cook Belgian food. My brother prefers steak béarnaise with chips, I prefer a good spaghetti."

Our dream? Shirjan • "There have been really hard times and occasionally there still are, but we simply have to carry on.

Our job Shirjan • "I first worked in a tomato greenhouse. On 7 July 2015, I started at Colruyt Keerbergen. Yes, I still remember the exact date. I am glad I


Between you and me • Remarkable colleagues

Knife thrower axed


Tom Huau throws anything that has a sharp end. Preferably knives and axes. Five years after his bronze medal at the Knife throwing World cup he finally relented and said yes to an article in The Gazette. Because you can now book 'Throwing Tom' for parties, workshops and team building activities. Where does your interest in knife and axe throwing come from? Tom • “As a child I was fascinated by knights and Vikings. I think it was because of an overdose of LEGO, museums and French castles on holiday. The sabres next to our stove, my karate lessons and the movie 'Under Siege' with Steven Seagal might also have something to do with it. At home I used to throw my father's wood chisels and screwdrivers. I also regularly took my mother's kitchen knives and put them back damaged. At the age of 14, I was given my first throwing knife during a holiday in Portugal. My youngest son has also been bitten by the microbe. I think he is the first fork thrower in Belgium (laughs).”

"I animate the audience at all kinds of occasions, as a knife thrower and as a magician" How exactly does knife throwing work? "There are different disciplines, but essentially you throw a knife at a target. From three metres, five metres, seven metres, etc. In distance throwing that's even from a distance of 27 metres. In speed throws, you throw as many knives as possible within 30 seconds. My record is 17, the world record is ... 57!"

You won bronze at the 2014 World Cup in France. How did you end up there? "My wife was tired of me showing off about how well I had thrown again. She thought I should compete against real professionals. About 200 people

participated in that World Cup. I won bronze in my discipline, just behind two Russian professional soldiers. And if you know that knife throwing is part of their training there ... (laughs)."

Since that World Cup 5 years ago I've been nagging you to write an article. Why did you agree to it in the end? "Honestly? I registered the domain name a while ago. I can now be booked for team building events, parties, workshops, etc. as a knife thrower and as a magician. For example, I supervised the children's magic workshops at Colruyt Group Academy for three years."

What does a show look like? "Form, content and location are jointly agreed. But I never throw at people. Maybe that's because of my background in health & safety, as a fire prevention engineer at T&I (laughs). For the rest, I throw everything that has a sharp point and is heavy enough. Nails, a pair of tongs, a barbecue fork, etc. As a knife thrower, I want to animate viewers, preferably in interaction with them."

If your hobby is knife throwing people notice you. "I definitely don't do it for the attention, but you do feel that knife throwing has a certain attraction. After the World Cup I featured in Het Nieuwsblad, on Ring TV, in Iedereen Beroemd … The camera man also wanted to try his hand at axe throwing and enjoyed it so much they were almost too late for their next report (laughs)! Last year I also did a show at Tomorrowland, a fantastic experience." Text: Niels Goossens Photo: Katleen Vandeneede


Between you and me • Remarkable colleagues

Coffee roaster roasted Chris Moreels, theft prevention worker, roasts strong single origin coffee in a garden shed in Kruisem. He calls his artisan cup of coffee Buizerd & Saars (Buzzards and 'Saars') after the majestic birds of prey in his Flemish Ardennes and the great-sounding dialect word for a warm blanket. 800 aromas in 1 bean Chris • "Coffee is my hobby that got out of hand. What started six years ago with a basic course in coffee has turned into a coffee roaster in my garden shed today. In addition to my four basic coffees, I roast beans tailored to my customers' needs. For example, for a restaurant, tailored to the menu. Did you know that a coffee bean contains around 800 aromas, depending on how you roast it?"

My coffee moment "I have an espresso machine at home. I use it mostly in the morning. When I have more time, I make a French press. And in


the evening I sometimes pour my coffee in the old-fashioned way. Or vice versa. It depends on how much time I have. But I always make my coffee the way it should be. The right water, the exact amount of coffee, the perfect pressure. No milk or extra flavourings for me. I will only take sugar in the very first espresso of the day."

10 minutes of warmth and enjoyment "The best coffee is drunk at home. Just make some time to enjoy a good cup of coffee for ten minutes. When people used to visit my parents' house, my

mum immediately put on a potse kaffe (pot of coffee). With a biscuit. Coffee is togetherness. Today everything is so rushed. And to relax, people take their cars, drive to the city and drink a bad coffee in a crowded tearoom. And yet it's so easy."

Dreams of coffee "My big dream: turn coffee into my fulltime job. My wife is now following a course to become a chocolatier. We want to combine these two things in a real coffee house. A place where you can drink different coffees from all over the world, made in different ways. With a nice chocolate to go with it. Because coffee and chocolate are a perfect match. I can already see it: a coffee house in 1930s style. With a reading corner and a seating area where people can relax. Read the papers, have a chat, taste coffee, etc. A meeting place for everyone." Text: Sara De Decker Photo: eXponent

Comedy on command Improv comedy? That's being funny without a scenario, à la minute, instantly or better yet, à la seconde! This relatively young discipline is what Tijs Hanssens, communications manager at T&I, enjoys. Tijs (bottom of photograph) is chairman of non-profit organisation The Lunatics, which has about 60 performers and as many performances a year; it's Flanders' biggest improv comedy club. He got a taste for it six years ago after a series of workshops. Today, Tijs himself gives workshops and tailor-made courses. And you will also find him on stage regularly, also at the Salamie Improv and Lichtsnelheid spin-offs.

A joke every 30" Tijs • "In improv comedy, the audience provides a suggestion. This can be a location, an object, an era, etc. Together with the other players you build the scene, whether or not in a certain format. You have to be able to be funny every 30 seconds or so. In the same way as for athletes, it's a matter of continuing to train and staying in shape."

Can anyone do it? "In company I always enjoyed being witty and to the point, but I only knew that improv comedy suited me when I had tried it. You can learn to improvise, it's a matter of technique, just like driving a car. Some people have sharper wit than others, but if you practise you will progress at your level. To be funny, that's something else, you have it or you don't. Everyone has a certain sense of humour, but that doesn't mean everyone is able to captivate an audience."

Not a kick but a click "Improv comedy is 100% in the moment, focusing and listening, watching and responding. It's extremely exciting that, together with others, you can build something from scratch, without knowing where you're going to end up, or whether it will catch on. This can only be achieved

if there is trust between the players. Trust that you can score, and that they will catch you when you are stuck. That click with players and audience is a wonderful feeling every time."

What works? "That special combination of being quick and funny. Watch a loose video fragment of an improv scene and you might not understand why an audience thinks something is funny. Often it's not the joke itself, but the anticipation of the relationship between the players, of the dynamics of the evening."

Improv comedy enriches your life "Since I've been playing, I've met a lot of great people. Apart from that, you learn a lot about yourself and life in a playful way. You practise with your own emotions and other people's, through typical thought and response patterns. You rehearse, as it were, for 'real' life, which in practice often makes it a lot easier". Text: Chris Tournicourt / Photo: Erik Duinslaeger

"We've performed in Utrecht, London and New York. That unique click with players and audience, that's what you do it for."


Between you and me

Births Bio-Planet 18/06/2019 13/08/2019 14/08/2019 22/08/2019

Emil to Maxim Vanloock Leyla to Florence Flounce Isabel to Robin De Groof Lena to Ahmed Mohamed Omar 01/09/2019 Alyssa to Steven Van Schil 19/09/2019 Kaya to Shana Cristiaens

BP&S 06/08/2019 12/08/2019 29/08/2019 30/08/2019 05/09/2019 10/09/2019 23/09/2019

Mats to Koen Lannoy Sam to Edouard Légat Lasse to Koen Vanderlinden Lara to Joris Beckers Anna to Evelyn Meysman Alexander to Sara Janssens Oona to Joni Rogiers

CCX 15/09/2019 Souhayb to Fouad Messaoudi

22/07/2019 29/07/2019 30/07/2019 31/07/2019 01/08/2019 02/08/2019 04/08/2019 04/08/2019 05/08/2019 06/08/2019 06/08/2019 07/08/2019 07/08/2019 08/08/2019 09/08/2019 10/08/2019 12/08/2019 12/08/2019 13/08/2019

Collect&Go 01/04/2019 Lilia to Abdelwahed Bokhari Forca 01/08/2019 Caithlynn to Kim Temmerman 01/09/2019 Teya to Orphée Liwoke 06/09/2019 Mil to Christophe Van den Bremt 19/09/2019 Aminata to Aboubacar Keita

Collishop 04/09/2019 Ryu Michel to Sonia Haddan 10/09/2019 Cézar to Raf De Cooman

Colruyt Group Fine Food 05/06/2019 Nasser to Nabil Maaz 12/07/2019 Kenny and Kevin to Francis Mvumbi Mabiala 18/07/2019 Finn to Nico Van Bellinghen 22/07/2019 Nannou to Willy Kamtan Kwinje 29/07/2019 Naïm to Mohamed-Amine Rhaffar 31/07/2019 Augustin to Renaud Foucart 01/08/2019 Zacharie Crai to Christian Andronache 07/08/2019 Djawad to Abou Igbo 13/08/2019 Karalambos to Georges Tjiovas 27/08/2019 Oona to Gabriel Engels 30/08/2019 Hasse to Koen Wens 12/09/2019 Nada to Jamal Abraïmi 18/09/2019 Wendy to Alain N'guettia Kouabena 19/09/2019 Eva to Bruno Flamand 23/09/2019 Guerwin Guilain to Rudy Bukasa

Colruyt Group Services 03/08/2019 05/08/2019 13/08/2019 30/08/2019 02/09/2019

Louise to Katrien Neveux Ella to Sofie Verbieren Matz to Annelies Beeckman Ash to Jasmine Leyssens Rune to Ben Huybrechts

Colruyt Lowest Prices 04/06/2019 10/06/2019 26/06/2019 30/06/2019 01/07/2019 16/07/2019


Jake to Stephanie Gekiere Thibo to Jonas De Muynck Noah to Frédéric Crépin Diego to Ludovic Oliosi Thelio to Antony Hadjistratis Basile to Amélie Oostland and Olivier de Bruycker

13/08/2019 13/08/2019

M  aurice to Lauren Neyt S  eyyid to Cengiz Topal K  enneth to Hanna de Mooij O  wen to Marie Wagemans S  acha to Francky Wyns T om to Kelly Sorce A  iden to Sandra Antwi C  larisse to Gaël Oprey M  ieke to Dani Thibos G  abriela to Donka Ivanova T hor to Liesbet Morren and Joan Huyberechts G  abrielle to Mireille Maertens R  uben to Georges Mulubwa F  inne to Aaricia Van Hoof L eander and Lilou to Stefanie Hellinx A  aron to Virginie Streydio A  ydan to Michel Delmotte M  iel to Gertjan Schepers C  harles to Aurélie Vancompernolle J ax to Florine Huyghe L eyla to David Struys

14/08/2019 A  rnaud and Alice to David Robert 14/08/2019 F  ons to Dorien De Kock 15/08/2019 L aurena to Davey Coens 16/08/2019 S  ouleyman to Faissal Kasmi 19/08/2019 R  une to Wim Schellekens 19/08/2019 T héa to Cedric Desodt 21/08/2019 A  nnaëh to Jordan Vandaele 21/08/2019 C  amille and Marylou to Thibault Deblaer 21/08/2019 C  édric to Gitte Kerstens 21/08/2019 E  lisa to Arne Hayaert 21/08/2019 E  lize to Laurien Huttener 22/08/2019 M  ilan to Tessa Vandevelde 24/08/2019 A  nnabel to Lieve Bauwens 25/08/2019 C  harlie to Annelien Van Thillo 25/08/2019 D  usan to Sarah De Jaegher 26/08/2019 T hiago to Sabri Sousane 27/08/2019 A  ron to Abdelhamid El Akal 27/08/2019 F  erre to Tiffany Plas 27/08/2019 R  obin to Tessa Willaert 28/08/2019 G  haylen to Chaima Houimli 29/08/2019 A  mbre to Fabrice Cochez 29/08/2019 L avey to Kelly De Wachter 29/08/2019 R  obin to Laurent Berns 31/08/2019 E  llie to Orlando Charles 03/09/2019 W  olf to Céline Gryson 04/09/2019 T yani to Patricia Pirrera 05/09/2019 E  lieze to Stefan Vanrillaer 05/09/2019 L ias to Valerie Martens 07/09/2019 I ssam to Sanaa Tarrah 09/09/2019 M  aël to Mike Debeukelaer 12/09/2019 L ine to Charlotte Bloemers 17/09/2019 E  lhadj Moryba to Mariame Dore 17/09/2019 E  nora to Robin Vanassche 17/09/2019 M  argaux to Kimberley Van der Steen 17/09/2019 N  ateo to Jessica Roeland 17/09/2019 T ess to Katrien Vandemergel 18/09/2019 F  leur to Shauni Ledent 21/09/2019 A  nna to Arne Noelmans 21/09/2019 J ules to Matthias Sonck 21/09/2019 M  axim to Benoit Goossens 22/09/2019 L ucie to Corneel Geers 23/09/2019 L ionel to Lizymar Ochoa 23/09/2019 I ris to Melissa De Ridder 24/09/2019 D  éylano to Yllana Raes 24/09/2019 O  livia to Mathieu Militello

25/09/2019 25/09/2019 25/09/2019 26/09/2019 27/09/2019 01/10/2019 02/10/2019 03/10/2019

A  lizéa to Nathalie Schul B  rian to Stefanie Claes J ulian to Steven De Rycke C  yrille to Elisa Vandenneucker E  lena to Claudio Fallica E  mir to Mehmed Yumit Feim P  rimerose to Maxim Meers L owie to Lien Van Durme

Dreambaby 04/08/2019 19/08/2019 29/08/2019 20/09/2019 23/09/2019 01/10/2019

G  eorges to Shana Gruyaert M  aëlle to Mieke Lippens L uka to Stijn Debremaeker S  iebe to Maaike Laenens L ucie to Anouck Dekeyser M  ila to Leen Van Droogenbroeck

Dreamland 08/08/2019 19/08/2019 20/09/2019 24/09/2019

L iam to Steven De Win H  anne to Marijke Van Thillo S  iebe to Maaike Laenens I ris to Corentin Bouvry

Finance 04/09/2019 E  lvira to Joris Ceuppens

Logistics 27/06/2019 D  elivio to Sebastien Jouret 11/07/2019 R  edouan to Mohamed Bouassab Ahlal 23/07/2019 A  yden to Mohamed Diallo 26/07/2019 C  amilia Eden to Tika Zegbe Songohozo 03/08/2019 T hélio to Mikaël De Brakeleer 08/08/2019 T héo to Quentin Suys 10/08/2019 V  annethmek to Vannak Prum 13/08/2019 L ou to Florian Delhaye 14/08/2019 E  lykia to Heritier Dibelay Junior Mukendi 17/08/2019 M  aïté to Cedrick Olivier Ngueukam Ngake 19/08/2019 A  udrey to Foster Boakye Pinamang 21/08/2019 A  yten to Murat Haci Karliga 23/08/2019 P  rince-Kurtis to Parfait Kouba 24/08/2019 H  ans-Mathis to Christelle Sandrine Ngueguim Tiomo 30/08/2019 C  amila to Jamal El Kaddouri 31/08/2019 V  alentin to Paul Dégardin 02/09/2019 L alla-Khadija to Imadeddine Esslimani 04/09/2019 R  yu to Mickaël Simon 04/09/2019 Y  asmine to Mustapha Bounja 05/09/2019 A  rthur to Boris Feune Foudie Simo 05/09/2019 A  ustin to Angelique Van Passenhove 09/09/2019 V  ictoria to Riccardo Zarbo 11/09/2019 T imileyin to Rodrick Nana Wandji 12/09/2019 G  abriel to Jordan Wilket 16/09/2019 A  ndy Daniel to Daniel Njeudji Nana 16/09/2019 R  oméo to Rémi Dumont 17/09/2019 A  nas to Mohamed El Hasnaoui 17/09/2019 I mran to Yasin Altintas 18/09/2019 A  naé to Gregory Giudice 18/09/2019 J ules to Jimmy Vander Eeckt 19/09/2019 A  iden to Aurélien Detoit 23/09/2019 L ilya to Saiffeddine Kalboussi 24/09/2019 E  léna to Vincent André 24/09/2019 I thiel to Osakanu Mukumadi

28/09/2019 30/09/2019 03/10/2019 07/10/2019

S  ofia to David Marchetti L ila to Antony Gomez Mesa T hea to Jeremy De Bleecker N  ino to Giordano Incorvaia

P&O 29/08/2019 10/09/2019 13/09/2019 26/09/2019

L uka to Liese Goossens N  iel to Caroline Vanhees R  enée to Charissa Neggers V  ictor to Tessa Vanderspeeten

NewStory 21/09/2019 I sa to Laurens De Wolf

OKay 29/07/2019 N  oor to Céline Michiels 01/08/2019 J ayden to Evelyne Put and Isabelle Vanlook 03/08/2019 F  enna and Thaïs to Stephanie Vermeulen 05/08/2019 L ily to Vincent Steppe 12/08/2019 C  alixte to Michaël Redotté 13/08/2019 I mran to Fadoua El Mokadem 14/08/2019 H  anne to Ellen Jacobs 19/08/2019 N  ils and Nina to Jolien De Ruyck 22/08/2019 L ouen to Claudia Machielsen and Jessica Lintermans 23/08/2019 A  pryl to Lorraine Steinier 30/08/2019 J udith to Jérémie André 04/09/2019 C  ylia to Pascal Gilles 12/09/2019 S  acha to Mickael Huys 13/09/2019 F  lo to Sandrien Van Heghe 18/09/2019 L iv to Jana Gevaert 19/09/2019 E  mma to Amandine Charon 25/09/2019 A  lizea to Jean-Sébastien Goffart 30/09/2019 A  mani to Kevin Tielemans 07/10/2019 J azzlynn to Evelien Dujardin

Retail Partners Colruyt Group 22/07/2019 F  leur to Thomas Verhulst 02/08/2019 E  lias to Sarah Van Bets and Tom Van Damme 05/08/2019 P  raistian to Christian Luboya 14/08/2019 A  dam to Yahia Mammeri 28/08/2019 L eni to Peter Lemmens 12/09/2019 L ine to Jens Van Landeghem 14/09/2019 J uliette to Bram Depester

Solucious 09/08/2019 04/09/2019 17/09/2019 17/09/2019 18/09/2019

M  ilow to Anthony Dumont T yani to Bastien Toubeau M  ats to Michaël Schroyens N  ateo to Michael Schleiper E  unice to Patrick Lomolongo Tshokote 25/09/2019 L ou to Mirko De Vleeschouwer

T&I 29/07/2019 01/08/2019 02/08/2019 03/08/2019 22/08/2019 27/08/2019 29/08/2019 02/09/2019 04/09/2019 08/09/2019 16/09/2019 17/09/2019 06/10/2019

E  mile to Florent Sieuw M  anou to Kasper De Backer J oshua to Michael Delva M  anu to Dirk Pauwels C  harlotte to Chloë Veldeman A  ttila to Remy Kaszas A  lexander to Filip Peeters N  olan to Alexandre Debreux F  eline to Friso Mosselmans S  wa to Kenneth De Clercq C  harlotte to Ingrid Everarts B  illie to Saartje De Boever V  ic to Jonas Drieghe

Marriage and Cohabitation Bio-Planet


14/09/2019 C  helsea Peeters and Glenn Tecqmenne 01/10/2019 K  oen Degraeuwe and Laura Zutterman

01/09/2019 K  evin De Muynck and Eline Goris 16/09/2019 D  aniël D'haen and Ellen van Amerongen

22/06/2019 N  anouschka Haeck and Anthony De Wilde 27/07/2019 E  lke Vanderveken and Ignace Dierckx 10/08/2019 N  icolas Tassignon and Jessica Laurent 01/09/2019 L isa Vanderstichele and Koen Van Biervliet



14/08/2019 A  nnelies Van den Neucker and Glenn Van Nuffel 07/09/2019 L ise Pauwels and Pallieter Muyldermans

27/09/2019 L aura Peeters and Maxim Michel Ludovic Chauvin


Logistics Colruyt Group Fine Food 28/05/2019 D  irk Kerckhofs and Sandrina Vankerk 17/08/2019 M  axim Jonet and Elise Tudisca

Colruyt Group Services

Paul Vancaeyseele has been retired for over a year, but is busy with his grandson Achiel. "Here he is in the trolley for the first time. No words needed …"

Retirement May Daniel Bral September Betty Bombeke Désirée De Meyer Joseph Degalaen Geert Demeester Micheline Henno Marleen Lemmens Filip Samaille Dirk Spiessens Georges Van Bever Frank Van Tilborgh October Serge Apomolia-Mokuba Jose De Caluwe Luc De Gieter Eric Decock Guido Delcour Ivo Dierckx Johan Janssens Dirk Van Put Michel Wilkin

09/08/2019 E  lke Deboelpaep and Glenn Maesschalck 01/09/2019 M  arika Van Vooren and Yuri Walravens 07/09/2019 G  unther Olenaed and Sophie Reyntens

Colruyt Lowest Prices 04/02/2019 G  lenn Van Herewegen and Kim Moons 29/06/2019 T om Vermorgen and René Engbarth 10/08/2019 X  avier Haye and Alexina Lise Marie Delhaye 10/08/2019 T homas Andries and Eline Claes 17/08/2019 T immy Schaillée and Karlijn Debruyne 24/08/2019 J ean-Marie Willocx and Carine De Cooman 27/08/2019 S  ébastien Mathieu and Regine Luyten 27/08/2019 P  atrick Cassiman and Catherine Faniel 28/08/2019 A  lessio Campione and Adelaïde Nita 01/09/2019 M  atthias De Croock and Bianca Everaert 01/09/2019 S  andra Lanckriet and Philippe Ronge 01/09/2019 N  ick De Weerdt and Tiara Lybaerts 01/09/2019 A  nne-Sophie Cappelle and Jens Harnisfeger 07/09/2019 G  ael De Ridder and Melanie Herbin 07/09/2019 D  akota Wiggett and Jeffrey Roos 07/09/2019 V  icky Lahousse and Johan Mathieu 14/09/2019 K  aren Versweyveld and Kristof De Backer 14/09/2019 J onathan Kenis and Lotte Van Deuren 16/09/2019 M  arleen Damme and Nancy De Backer 18/09/2019 K  evin Marin and Shirley Bourgeois 21/09/2019 T amara Meskens and Yves François Arsene Kuppens 26/09/2019 K  elly Claeys and Robin De Nys 28/09/2019 K  izi Muylaert and Vincent De Rop 01/10/2019 J ille Brys and Stephan Zutterman

26/07/2019 O  sakanu Mukumadi and Amisi Mwayuma 27/07/2019 E  douard Lermigneaux and Laetitia Nicaise 03/08/2019 S  teve Janssens and Angelique Siemes 08/08/2019 C  hristophe Vandenbranden and Valerie De Passe 09/08/2019 K  ristel Pauwels and Dirk Van der Elst 12/08/2019 A  nneleen Sinnesael Van Eesbeek and Tania Vangestel 23/08/2019 H  elena Martins Vaz and Alexandre Oliveira Azevedo Helder 28/08/2019 A  my Cisse and Miguel Daniel Dopla 01/09/2019 P  hilmain William Leuppi Kontchipe and Villette Tchongang Djonkou 10/09/2019 A  ngélique Christine Siemes and Steve Janssens 16/09/2019 M  ichael Tono Mylonas and Julie Ricour 21/09/2019 E  ddy Parmentier and Laurence Fromant 27/09/2019 O  don Modeste Ngindu Katshiame and Chantal Pukuta-Sungu

NewStory 30/09/2019 K  imberly Schiettecatte and Sam Meesters

OKay 27/07/2019 P  ascal Nasuti and Vanessa Bomblet 09/08/2019 S  amantha Poulaert and Cédric Albert Yvon Pyr dit Ruys 27/08/2019 L oredana Lamarra and Aurelia Migaris 06/09/2019 T ineke Vermonden and Kevin Vertongen

Retail Partners Colruyt Group 01/05/2019 K  offi Koouakou and Hélène Kouassi Akissi 26/09/2019 N  orbu Tsering and Tsomo Pema

Solucious 01/10/2019 D  orian Sarens and Lysianne Bansard

T&I DATS 24 24/08/2019 N  ico Claes and Anaïs Carlier

Dreambaby 29/06/2019 N  adine Delaby and Claude Drijepondt 14/08/2019 J enne De Boeck and Sven Van De Gucht 24/08/2019 G  il Malbert and Hélène Adriaenssen

22/06/2019 T im Van de Walle and Josefien Maes 27/09/2019 C  hantal Pukuta Sungu and Odon Modeste Ngindu Katshiame 27/09/2019 J eroen Van Den Haute and Melissa Verheye 28/09/2019 B  ert De Meersman and Elke Quidé

Deaths 14/08/2019 Cyril Haber 20/08/2019 Kjenta Goderis 22/08/2019 Yvan De Durpel 22/08/2019 Alain Liénard 31/08/2019 Kabamba Kabamba 11/09/2019 Walter Hannon 30/09/2019 Myriam Mary


Between you and me • Wall of Fame

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@SaraDekeuleneer This is one of the reasons why I like to read the @colruyt folder. It informs and gives tips.

An Deridder to Dreamland Belgium It's daddy Stijn's birthday today! Fun picture taken at Dreamland Ninove!

yannickmennes To the #colruyt in style with a #volvoamazon #1964 Emeric Buelens to Dreambaby We recently bought a nappy changing table at Dreambaby Drogenbos, unfortunately it had a manufacturing defect. The workers immediately arranged a quick exchange and even proposed to help install the new table on the spot to make sure everything worked. What a team! #whatateam #service #satisfied customer #merci

mium beer, I recently bought your pre s. I really better known as Cara Pil My stomach ld. go uid enjoyed your liq e I took a sip. was in ecstasy every tim record this Fortunately I was able to sterity! beautiful moment for po


Received a grea t gift this weeke nd, a handy breakfas t bowl. Thanks OKay, this will co me in very hand y!

Between you and me • Flashback

The first video studio at Wilgenveld, around 1981. "At the time, we weren't working digitally yet, but with magnetic tape, which means the editing had to be right the first time."

Rolls of film and video cassettes "As a photography student, I was asked if I wanted to take product photos for Colruyt, in an old cinema in Halle. After a few months of evening work, I joined the brand-new Colruyt marketing team. This is when we created the Colruyt brochure. Photography was still analogue. When we bought our first digital camera in 1993 for 2.5 million Belgian francs, it saved us so much time we earned it back in no time. That's what you call work simplification." Hugo Van Pottelbergh: "After 39 years of service, I recently retired. And yes, I still photograph and film, but often just with a small camera."

Video, the channel of the future "Jo Colruyt convinced me to start up video as well as photography, even though I didn't know anything about

it. Also a big investment. In the eighties we started with a video news for our employees, the predecessor of L!nk. Colruyt was a real pioneer in this, at that time only the BRT was working with video. In the central buildings, by the way, you could watch all the video realisations, thanks to the cable that Jo himself had laid in the Edingensesteenweg in Halle!"

a year, due to great demand, we bundled all the recipes on VHS video cassettes. They sold really well, a success story. It wasn't until years later that we published the first Colruyt recipe book, Smakelijk 1. During the rest of my career I was also given the space and trust to achieve more. I am very grateful for that." Text: Valerie Janssens Photo: Katleen Vandeneede

"I also helped to launch the video recipes, which were being run in the Colruyt shops for the customers. We were a small team and did everything ourselves: getting ingredients in the store, cooking dishes, taking care of the styling, filming, etc. Once

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Between you and me • Photo finish

Du vin, du pain …

The fact that the French are good at making wine is no secret. And they like to drink it themselves too! This became clear during the wine tasting of Colruyt Prix Qualité in Épinac (department of Saône-et-Loire). Manager Sébastien Annot and his team welcomed 94 local company directors, traders and agents. "We let them sample about 40 white and red wines, and our house champagne Marquis De Villon. The charcuterie and cheese added to the enjoyment of the evening. And it was successful, because we sold a lot of bottles and took lots of orders!"

Solemn farewell to ‘Mrs ten-forty 02/360’

On 5 September, Colruyt Group's decades old number 02/360.10.40 ceased to exist. The number was known mostly thanks to the Red Telephone, but was also used by suppliers, journalists, personnel, etc. which was not very efficient. Externals can reach us via 02/363.55.45 from now on. "It really felt like the end of an era. To make sure that the news was picked up by as many colleagues as possible, we wanted to do something fun around it", say Arianne Sanders and Jan Derom of In Contact. "We wrote a fictitious letter in which we symbolically buried ‘Mrs ten-forty 02/360’ and we put up the poster all over Wilgenveld in her memory!"


Tetris challenge

What do you find in the van of "the DATS men"? Thanks to the Tetris challenge, we know. This hype conquered social media in recent weeks. Emergency services from all over the world unload everything from their car and display it like Tetris cubes. Including the driver. We can do that too, thought DATS 24 and station manager Patrick Claus.

1,500 shopping lists Blind spot classes for youngsters in Poperinge

For the third year in a row students from Groot-Poperinge and surrounding area were invited to the Colruyt Poperinge car park for blind spot classes. In all, 13 schools and about 500 children showed up. Our shop is in the centre, which means many of them pass through here at busy times or when our trucks come to unload", says salesperson Frankie Bouton (second from the right). "One of our drivers taught them about the dangers in traffic. The local police zone was also there with a bike course and promille glasses."

Yves Verleysen and his sons Cas and Cyr had a special hobby these past three years. They collected as many as 1,500 discarded shopping lists! To celebrate the 5th anniversary of their Colruyt store in Tielt, they made a large 2 m² collage that was exhibited in the store. "Our family is very environment-conscious and we found it quite funny to read what people were writing down. You have neat lists, sloppy lists and typed lists in all colours and formats. We even found lists in Chinese, Polish and Spanish."

Vertical farming amazes Antwerp youth

At the end of September, Colruyt Group attended Let's get digital, an event organised by radio station MNM, where our youngsters are made enthusiastic about the technology of the future. Hundreds of youngsters went to the MAS (Museum aan de Stroom) in Antwerp. "Our booth about vertical farming was very successful, both young and old were interested", says Senne Huysmans, assistant communication co-ordinator bij T&I.

We are happy course participants!

Happy bunch wouldn't you say? Last summer, these workers from different parts of Colruyt Group took the 'communication core skills' course. "They were three interesting days", says Bo Timmerman (bottom left), team member at OKay Ardooie. "Such a course is always a bit uncomfortable at first, but we soon got to know each other better!"


Between you and me • Photo finish

I'm going on a trip and I'm taking with me…

… OKay balloons! A few months ago, a customer of OKay Vichte left for Tanzania on an internship. In her suitcase: a pack of blue and orange balloons, courtesy of store manager Tim Piens. "She recently came back with this photograph printed on canvas to thank us. You know… things like this make me very happy!"

Family visit at RPCG

On Sunday 6 October, the doors opened in Mechelen to the employees of Retail Partners Colruyt Group and their families. About 2,000 people went on a tour of the distribution centre. Young and old enjoyed the food trucks and all kinds of animations after the tour (VR goggles, truck with blind spot mirror, bouncy castles, balloon clown, face painting, marching band etc.). The Family day was organised as a thank you for the good results of the past year and to celebrate the change of name and move to Mechelen, five years ago already!

Trainees having a party

A new load of analysts is born! "We are the second ‘batch’ that graduated following the one-year traineeship at BP&S", says Josefien De Dapper. "We organised a party on 11 October. Our way of thanking everyone who helped us."


Indian buffet @Wilgenveld

Aloo gobi, pulao, masala channa, etc. Do these Indian dishes sound Chinese to you? In September you were able to sample them during the Indian theme day at the Wilgenveld canteen. "We wanted to do our Indian colleagues a favour and help them integrate here in Belgium", says Tania Sienaert, Catering co-ordinator. "Together with our caterer we made a typically Indian menu, made from Boni products. And everyone enjoyed the food!"

There's no Gazette without you Do you have a good idea for an article in The Gazette? Be sure to let one of our correspondents know. Who knows, maybe you will see your proposal in The Gazette's next edition.

Colruyt Group BP&S Henk Ruttens CCX Wendy De Greef

RPCG running Dwars door Mechelen

For the third year in a row, Retail Partners Colruyt Group took part in the ‘Dwars door Mechelen’ running event. All runners were dressed in RPCG colours and on the Grote Markt they were treated to drinks and snacks in a tent. As a sponsor, we also made our presence felt along the course with banners, beach flags and skydancers. Out of the 40 participating colleagues Wesley Verschueren was the first to cross the finish line. Congratulations!

Colruyt Group Fine Food Evelien Bellemans Corporate Nathalie Roisin Finance Riet Janssens In Contact Jan Derom

Logistics & Transport Toon Vandesande P&O Tess Desmecht Retail Partners Colruyt Group Paul Cannaerts and Astrid Desmet T&I Tijs Hanssens Eoly Maarten Van Houdenhove

Business activities Bio-Planet Jelle Huwé Collect&Go Stephanie Sunaert


Head butcher Kurt Frooninckx (in the middle on the photograph) of Colruyt Wetteren has a passion for delicious food, drinks… and fire! It earned him a podium place at the Belgian BBQ Championship in Sint-Niklaas, in which 54 teams participated. "Together with some friends and my wife Femke De Kerpel (on the right on the podium, orientation manager at P&O) I came third in the ‘culinary’ category. We also won the public award because we sold the most snacks to the public. We served an oven roll with pork belly marinated in Duvel beer and a BBQ ice cream with charcoal crumble. In September the BBQ World Cup takes place in Torhout. Time to compete with some international teams!"

Colruyt France Marine Streit Cru Sandra Michiels

Collishop Lieven Beullens

DATS 24 Maarten Van Houdenhove

Codifrance Isabelle Gessat

Dreambaby Bianca Verhaeghe

Colruyt Group Academy Elke Vandamme

Dreamland Barbara Depril

Colruyt Lowest Prices Peter Heye, Yves Rondelez and Anja Vonck

OKay Tom Pellis Solucious Phebe De Blieck

Do you have any nice pictures of you and your colleagues? Or are you the proud owner of pictures from days gone by? Send us a mail ( or a direct (GAZET).



Photo: Marie Lambrecht

At the end of September the first edition of CaraRock was organised: a rock rally for and by Colruyt Group employees. Five bands, with members from all over the company, put their best musical foot forward. The organising team put in dozens of hours of their spare time and is already looking forward to next year. Jill Couvreur, singer of Roxygen and team member at OKay Houthulst, dressed appropriately in skirt and Cara T-shirt!

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GAZET6 2019 EN  

GAZET6 2019 EN