The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR) headquartered in Cincinnati, OH, is one of the world's largest food retailers, with fiscal 2021 sales of $137.9B.


Incisiv Digital Performance Rank

Overall Rank: Leader
Research & Discovery: Leader
Online Ordering: Challenger
Fulfillment: Leader
Service: Leader


About Kroger

The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR) headquartered in Cincinnati, OH, is one of the world's largest food retailers, with fiscal 2021 sales of $137.9B.

Number of Geographic Locations covered by the Brick & Mortar stores: 35 states & the district of Columbia
Number of Supermarkets & Multi-Department Stores: 2,726
Number of Supermarket Fuel Centers: 1,613
Number of Fine Jewelry Stores: 137
Number of Distribution Centers: 45
Number of Food Production Plants: 33
Number of New Customer Fulfillment Centers opened: 2, in Monroe, OH and Groveland, FL
Future Plans to open Customer Fulfillment Centers in: Dallas, TX; Forest Park, GA (Atlanta); Frederick, MD; Phoenix, AZ; Pleasant Prairie, WI; Romulus, MI (Detroit); and Pacific Northwest and West regions

Source: About Kroger


Financial Year 2021: Key Takeaways

  • In 2021, total corporate sales were $137.9 billion, up from $132.5 billion the previous year
  • In comparison to the same period the previous year, total firm revenues climbed by 0.2 percent
  • In 2021, the gross margin was 22.0 percent of revenues
  • In comparison to the same period the previous year, the FIFO gross margin rate, excluding fuel, fell 43 basis points. This drop is mostly due to higher supply chain costs and strategic price initiatives, which are somewhat offset by sourcing benefits and increased alternative profit margins
  • The 2021 LIFO charge was nearly $197 million, compared to a $7 million credit in 2020. Higher inflation in most categories contributed to the $204 million raise, with food and meat being the biggest drivers
  • The Operating, General, and Administrative rate fell 61 basis points, which excludes fuel and adjustment items, due to lower COVID-related costs and cost-cutting initiatives, partially offset by significant associate investments
  • In 2021, the income tax rate was 18.8 percent, compared to 23.2 percent the previous year. Because of the successful outcome of income tax audit exams spanning multiple years, the current year's tax rate is lower than last year's

Source: Reports & Statements - The Kroger Co.


Digital Timeline

  • In Q1, Our Brands introduced 253 new items, and Kroger announced the expansion of its collaboration with 80 Acres Farms to 316 locations, allowing more Midwest shoppers to shop in-store and online 
  • Kroger also began a digital farmers market experiment in Q1 of this year, creating an e-commerce marketplace that connects local farmers and businesses with shoppers looking for fresh and flavorful items
  • In the first quarter of this year, Kroger established its first two Ocado-powered Kroger Delivery locations in Monroe, Ohio, and Groveland, Florida. Kroger boosted capacity for Pickup by 15%, focusing on increasing high-demand time slots, to 2,233 Pickup sites and 2,488 Delivery locations, representing 98 percent of Kroger households
  • In addition, Kroger announced a Kroger Drone Delivery test with Drone Express in Q1, emphasizing the significance of flexibility and immediacy to customers
  • The two-year stack of digital sales increased by 114% in Q2. Our Brands debuted 142 new dishes and announced a partnership with Kitchen United, a ghost kitchen partner, to establish a new service that allows users to order meals on-demand from prominent restaurants
  • In the second quarter, Kroger announced a partnership with KNAPP to upgrade and expand the Great Lakes Distribution Center, resulting in increased efficiency for regional store replenishment and faster delivery of fresh food to customers
  • Kroger had grown to 2,239 Pickup and 2,546 Delivery locations by the second quarter, representing 98 percent of Kroger households. Kroger also expanded its Google Maps experiment to improve the grocery pickup experience for associates and customers
  • The two-year stack of digital sales increased by 103 percent in Q3. 216 new items were released by Our Brands. Kroger partnered with Instacart to introduce Kroger Delivery Now, a 30-minute delivery service made possible by a first-of-its-kind virtual convenience store shopping experience
  • Kroger launched Boost by Kroger Plus, an annual membership program that offers customers free delivery, in Q3. Kroger also announced plans for five additional customer fulfillment centers powered by the Ocado Group, including expansions in California and Florida, as well as a first-time entry into the Northeast
  • In Q3, Kroger announced a national e-commerce experience via and a small-scale physical store pilot to increase home and baby goods offerings with Bed Bath & Beyond and Buybuy Baby
  • In Q4, the two-year digital sales stack climbed by 105 percent. Our Brands has introduced 72 new goods. Kroger launched the Kroger Floral experiment in Houston and Dallas in collaboration with DoorDash, allowing customers to get fresh flowers in as short as one hour
  • Kroger established a Customer Fulfillment Center powered by Ocado in Forest Park, Georgia, as well as a cross-dock spoke facility in the Indianapolis region, in the fourth quarter. It also announced the opening of Customer Fulfillment Centers in the Cleveland area, as well as in North Carolina, new geography. In addition, Kroger announced the opening of a cross-dock spoke plant in Oklahoma City, a new market for the firm
  • In Q4, Kroger launched Starbucks Mobile Order & Pay in more than 150 stores, allowing customers to order ahead and pick up in-store via the Starbucks mobile app. Through the introduction of Nuro's third-generation autonomous delivery vehicle, it increased its relationship with Nuro to continue changing the customer experience
  • Digital sales increased by 92 percent in the first quarter. As a result of the epidemic, Kroger offered no-contact delivery, low-contact pickup, and ship-to-home orders. Kroger also started taking SNAP/EBT benefits for Kroger's low-contact Pickup service nationwide, as well as a Pickup-only location in Cincinnati. Kroger has also been expanding contactless payment options like Kroger Pay
  • Digital sales increased by 127 percent in the second quarter. Kroger's exceptional performance in the face of the pandemic can be ascribed to its robust internet presence
  • Digital sales increased by 108 percent in the third quarter. Our Brands debuted the newest things in history, including 50 new Simple Truth Plant Based collection items. Kroger has increased its Pickup and Delivery sites to 2,213 and 2,468 respectively, representing over 98 percent of Kroger households. In addition, Kroger announced the opening of a new Kroger-Ocado customer fulfillment center in Romulus, Michigan
  • IIn the fourth quarter, digital sales increased by 118 percent. “Our Brands” had its strongest year ever, with revenues exceeding $26.2 billion. Simple Truth's annual sales surpassed $3 billion for the first time, and the Plant-Based line received 53 new goods
  • Kroger increased its Pickup sites to 2,223 and Delivery locations to 2,472 in Q4, serving 98 percent of Kroger households. In addition, the company has expanded its cooperation with Ocado, with plans to build a new Customer Fulfillment Center in the Southwest United States
  • Our Brands sales increased 3.3 percent year over year in the first quarter, led by double-digit growth in Simple Truth. 219 new Our Brands items were also introduced by Kroger. Kroger now has 1,685 pickup and 2,126 delivery sites, representing more than 93 percent of Kroger households. In Monroe, Ohio, Kroger broke construction on the first Kroger-Ocado center and named the site of the second customer fulfillment center
  • Sales of Our Brands increased by 3.1 percent year over year in the second quarter. 203 new Our Brands items were also introduced by Kroger. Kroger increased its Pickup locations to 1,780 and Delivery locations to 2,225, reaching more than 95 percent of Kroger households, and announced the location of a new Kroger-Ocado customer fulfillment center in Georgia
  • Our Brands sales increased by 3.4 percent year over year in the third quarter. Kroger introduced 231 new Our Brands products, including the Simple Truth Plant Based collection, which includes fresh meatless burger patties and other items that appeal to a rising number of customers looking for meat and dairy alternatives
  • Kroger expanded to 1,915 Pickup sites and 2,326 Delivery locations in Q3, representing over 96 percent of Kroger households, and introduced a fully seamless Ship service. In addition, Kroger announced the opening of a new Kroger-Ocado customer fulfillment center in Wisconsin
  • Our Brands had its biggest year ever in Q4, with sales exceeding $23.1 billion. In 2019, Kroger launched 39 new Our Brands Plant-Based items. Kroger also announced the opening of a new Kroger-Ocado customer fulfillment facility in Maryland, with 1,989 pickup sites and 2,385 delivery locations, representing 97 percent of Kroger households
  • Kroger increased digital sales by 66 percent in the first quarter. Furthermore, Kroger established a partnership with Ocado, an online grocery store, to provide anything, anytime, anywhere to American families 
  • In the first and second quarters of 2018, Kroger expanded its relationship with Instacart to span 75 new markets across the United States 
  • Kroger's digital sales increased by more than 50% in the second quarter. Kroger began changing the grocery shopping experience by launching Kroger Ship in four US locations
  • In order to improve Customer Value, Kroger initiated an autonomous vehicle test with Nuro and increased its Instacart offering in Q2. Furthermore, Kroger expanded Our Brands abroad, making Simple Truth® items available on Alibaba's Tmall Global platform in China
  • With 130k downloads in two months and a goal of 1 million downloads in a year, Kroger released OptUP, an innovative data-driven app that helps customers make more educated, healthier buying decisions
  • In the second quarter, Kroger's seamless coverage area rose to 80 percent of households, thanks to curbside pickup and home delivery from the store
  • With Kroger expanding Kroger Ship to all divisions, digital sales increased by more than 60% in Q3 and digital households increased by double digits. Kroger also had a record-breaking third quarter. Unit and sales increase for our brands 
  • In Q4, Kroger launched Kroger Pay and the Kroger REWARDS debit card, bringing the Simple Truth® brand to half a million additional households in a single quarter. In conjunction with Nuro, Kroger announced two additional Ocado shed locations in Florida and the Mid-Atlantic, as well as the world's first-ever unmanned grocery delivery service
  • Kroger's digital sales increased by 126% in Q2 due to ClickList
  • Kroger's digital revenue increased by roughly 109 percent in Q3 due to ClickList 
  • Kroger's digital sales increased by over 90% in the fourth quarter
  • Kroger began offering ClickList and ExpressLaneonline ordering options in 25 areas in the first quarter of this year. ClickList is a tailored service where you can order online and pick up in-store
  • ClickList was the driving force behind a 126 percent increase in digital revenue in Q2
  • Kroger started offering ExpressLane online ordering services and ClickList in over 550 stores in Q3 of this year
  • Kroger added over 420 ClickList sites in Q4 for a total of 640 online ordering service locations 

Source: Quarterly Results - The Kroger Co.

Digital sales, which principally include Pickup, Delivery, Ship, and pharmaceutical e-commerce transactions, increased by 116% in 2020, 29% in 2019, and 58% in 2018.

Source: Reports & Statements - The Kroger Co.