Worker-owned supermarket Eroski ended the year 2017 with 377 new employees.
Around 77% of the new members were women, which, says the Spanish retailer, is a reflection of its gender equality policy.
The new jobs were generated through the opening of new stores and revamping of older stores.
Around 95% of the new members work in the stores, particularly in the fresh food section, with the remaining employees working within the travel department.
“We are very happy to continue to generate co-operative employment, incorporating employees who decide to become co-operators, with the rights and responsibilities that come with it, being owners of the enterprise they are working for,” said the general social director of Eroski, Iñigo Eizaguirre.
After joining the co-op, the new members have to undergo a training programme which is aimed at informing them about the co-operative business model and help them integrate, as well as learn about their rights and duties. The co-op employs a total of 8,127 member-owners.
During the year 2017 the retailer opened 61 new stores. Its network currently includes 600 new generation stores, 31 hypermarkets and 570 supermarkets. These were designed to reduce their impact on the environment and reduce their energy consumer by 65%, compared to a conventional shop.
The stores, which are branded as Contigo, (With You) also seek to promote a healthy eating culture. They include a range of 21,000 local products while more than half of its suppliers and local producers. The new format stores account for 65% of the group’s total food sales.
The retailer reported a 5.7% increase in profit before tax to €55.7m in 2017, with total sales reaching €4.79 billion.