Iceland flag Iceland: Buying and Selling

The distribution network in Iceland

Evolution of the Sector
Distribution is concentrated around the capital, but cargo to other areas can be transported by air, ship or truck.  There are no railroads in Iceland. The biggest port in Iceland for cargo is Sundahofn in Reykjavik where both Eimskip and Samskip, the two largest cargo shipping companies in Iceland, have their HQ and shipping docks. From the docks to the final destination products are either handled through the mail for individuals or wholesalers and their distribution channel.

Very large shops are common in Iceland. Whereas Hypermarkets have gained increasing prominence over the last 20 years in Europe, in Iceland, one company, Hagar, has a 48% market share in the food retail trade (2016 data) with three different types of stores catering to different consumer needs. One peculiarity which is worth noting as well is that in the retail market in Iceland 70% of the volume of all merchandise is imported.
Market share
There are many different types of grocery stores in Iceland

-    Bonus Grocery Stores: Bonus is the cheapest and most affordable supermarket out there.

-    Kronan Grocery Stores: Kronan is a budget grocery store in Iceland and offer a large meat and dairy section as well as fresh foods.

-    Netto Supermarkets: Netto is another one of the budget grocery stores in Iceland and it is quite large. It is larger than many Bonus stores and has lots of locations in the east fjords, west fjords, and north of Iceland.

-    Hagkaup Supermarkets: Hagkaup is is the biggest retail channel in Iceland, opened 24 hours a day.

-    Kjarval Grocery Stores: Kjarval stores are more developed on smaller town. They offer higher prices than the average.

-    Krambúð Grocery Stores: Krambúð focuses on the medium and small towns spread throughout the country. They offer a range of first necessity food products.
Retail Sector Organisations
Federation of trade and services
Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs
Iceland Chamber of Commerce

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Latest Update: April 2024