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COOP opens first supermarket

Hungary's COOP, which has operated small grocery stores around the country for 10 years, will rather build supermarkets in the future, president-CEO Pál Bartus announced at the opening a 600 square meter store in the town of Kistokaj, northeast Hungary on Wednesday. COOP operates 3,000 stores in 1,730 towns and villages, Bartus said. The stores had combined revenue of Ft 355 billion last year, giving COOP a 13% share of the market, he said. Sales of COOP's more than 600 different house brands generated sales of Ft 27 billion. Northern Hungary is especially important for COOP, considering stores there generate 30.5% of total revenue, Bartus said. COOP employs 31,000 people at its stores and spent Ft 3 billion to modernize its stores last year.