The cooperative REWE Group is an international trade and tourism group. REWE (Revisionsverband der Westkaufgenossenschaften) was established in 1927 by 17 purchasing cooperatives. Today REWE-ZENTRALFINANZ eG (RZF) together with its subsidiaries forms REWE Group. REWE Group is proud of its cooperative roots. The Supervisory Board, shareholders, retailers and the Management Board of REWE Group view the long-term cooperative structure as a guarantee of independence and self-determination. In 2007, this commitment was reaffirmed in the Travemünde Declaration. The headquarters of REWE Group have been located in Cologne ever since the company was established. As of 31 December 2019, the parent company and 415 subsidiaries (previous year: 412) are included in the Combined Financial Statements (see also the Group Management Report for the 2019 Financial Year, page 3). The number of stores of REWE retailers in Germany was over 1,800 in 2019.
REWE Group is active in various business segments:
The sales lines include the supermarkets and consumer stores operated by the brands REWE, REWE CENTER, BILLA, MERKUR and ADEG; the discounter PENNY; the BIPA drugstores; and the toom DIY stores. These are supplemented by convenience stores (REWE To Go) and the e-commerce activities of REWE Lieferservice as well as ZooRoyal, Weinfreunde and Kölner Weinkeller. The new business segment of convenience encompasses the wholesale activities of the group in the field of food and non-food products to go with the Lekkerland Group.
The company’s own production operations Glocken Bäckerei and the quality butcher Wilhelm Brandenburg also supply premium store-brand products.
Travel and tourism forms the Group’s second core business. Its activities are performed under the umbrella of DER Touristik Group. Companies here include the tour operators DERTOUR, Jahn Reisen, ITS, Meiers Weltreisen, ADAC Reisen, Kuoni, Helvetic Tours, Apollo and Exim Tours, and over 2,800 travel agencies (including DER Reisebüro, DERPART and cooperation partners), the hotel brands lti, Sentido, Club Calimera, Cooee, PrimaSol and Playitas Resort, and the direct operator clevertours.com (for a detailed description of the individual business segments, also see the Group Management Report for the 2019 Financial Year, pages 4–5).
In 2019, REWE Group operated stores in 22 European countries and employed 363,633 people (previous year: 360,315). Total external revenue generated in 2019 increased to 62.7 billion euros (previous year: 61.2 billion euros). In its home market of Germany, REWE Group employed 260,179 people (previous year: 259,496). The number of employees abroad increased to 103,454 (previous year: 100,819).
REWE Group is the market leader in the food retail sector in Austria, where it operates BILLA supermarkets, MERKUR consumer markets and PENNY discount stores. The portfolio is rounded out by BIPA drugstores, which sell many items found in chemist shops except for medications, and the stores operated by independent ADEG retailers. With the BILLA supermarket format, Retail International is also represented in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Russia, Slovakia and Ukraine. In Croatia, the BIPA brand also operates drugstores. PENNY International is represented in Italy, Austria, Hungary, Romania and the Czech Republic. The revenue of International Full-Range Stores rose to 10.2 billion euros (previous year: 9.4 billion euros) and the revenue of International Discount Stores rose to 5.1 billion euros (previous year: 4.8 billion euros).
Today, Travel and Tourism has its own group structure under the umbrella of REWE Group. For this purpose, the six German organisers were combined in DER Touristik Deutschland GmbH and DER Touristik Group GmbH was founded as an international holding. Consolidated revenue in the Travel and Tourism business segment rose by 1.6 per cent to 5 billion euros in 2019.
The network of Group-owned destination agencies is growing steadily and being further expanded at up-and-coming destinations. For example, the agencies in Mauritius and Cambodia were started in 2019. As a result, DER Touristik Group has operations with its own agencies in 27 countries and employs around 1,700 people. Around 4 million guests are served each year.
In 2019, DER Touristik Group focused on growth in the Eastern European travel market: in October it acquired the Romanian company Travel Brands SRL with the country’s leading travel agency sales operation, a tour operator and a business travel unit with destination agency. DER Touristik Group had already announced its intention to acquire Fischer Group in 2019. After review by the Czech anti-trust commission, the acquisition was unconditionally approved and completed in spring 2020. This continues DER Touristik Group’s internationalisation strategy, and the group therefore now operates in 16 European countries. The aim of the wide variety of brands and activities is to be a reliable partner to customers along their trip.