Grocery retail booms in Istanbul amid pandemic
The demand for grocery stores in Istanbul has skyrocketed amid the COVID-19 pandemic, as the number of people investing in opening grocery stores in the country’s largest metropolis, Istanbul, has increased by 20 percent.
“People who lose their jobs or cannot find one opened a grocery store,” İsmail Keskin, the head of Istanbul Chamber of Grocers (İSTBAKO), told Demirören News Agency.
“I was working in the tourism sector until the pandemic. I was jobless and opened a grocery shop six months ago close to my house,” said Oktay Şahin, a new grocer, agreeing with the İSTBAKO’s head.
According to experts, the reason for the high demand is that “establishing this business does not require much money.”
People who were in lockdown for months also preferred grocers rather than the supermarkets as they could open accounts at grocers rather than buying daily needs with cash or credit cards.
“Kağıthane, Esenyurt, Bağcılar and Güngören are some of the featured districts where grocery stores were mostly opened,” Keskin said.
Noting that the number of grocers has exceeded 20,000 in the metropolis, Keskin said, “The number of our members has increased from 5,500 to 7,500 amid pandemic.”
He is also assertive to propose the commercial authorities choose grocers as “the business of the year,” as it is the only field of profession that has this much demand.
Mustafa Aslanoğlu is another new grocer like Şahin who recommends people to open a grocery store.
“Maybe you do not earn 1,000 Turkish Liras [$111] daily. But you get 100 liras [$11] at the end of the day. I never witnessed anybody closing the store for not enough sales,” Aslanoğlu said.
“People need nourishment. So this business does not have any risk,” Şahin noted.
Hayati Kahraman, who is a grocer for nearly half a century summarized the earning at the grocery business, saying, “A grocery store would neither kill you nor crawl you.”
Another data about the pandemic was released from the Federation of the Turkish Automotive Maintenance Societies (TOBFED).
According to the statistics, a vehicle owner in Istanbul spends approximately 3,652 liras [$408] amid the pandemic for maintaining good hygiene levels in their vehicles.
Every 77 out of 100 owners had their vehicles cleaned regularly, 55 of them had disinfection of air-conditioning systems.
The survey also showed that an owner had his or her vehicle cleaned some 6.5 times on average a year amid the pandemic.