Despite the recession dampening consumer spending, Coop Italy says it will invest 400 million euros by opening 71 new stores by 2014.
That will include 62 supermarkets and nine hypermarkets, or super-sized supermarkets, Coop said Thursday as it presented its annual report.
The Coop represents a group of Italian consumers' cooperatives which operates the largest supermarket chain in Italy. The company said it expects to close fiscal 2012 with a 1% increase in profits, worth about 13.2 billion euros, over 2011 figures.
"In reality, Coop Italy confirms its leadership in Italy...despite the (economic) crisis," said Vincenzo Tassinari, president of the Management Board of Coop Italy.
The organization's market share now stands at 18.4% as sales rose by 1.1% between January and August even if, said Tassinari, "in recent years, profitability has been reduced."