WIHURI METRO-TUKKU – Insight, strategy, business design, interior design, branding
From a wholesale generalist to a restaurateur’s work partner
The business target
How to transform a 120-year-old wholesale operator to meet the requirements of today’s market and unprecedented competitive situation?
Wihuri Metro-tukku is a nationwide daily goods wholeseller that has a strong local presence and a history dating back to 120 years. Due to significant changes in the market and the current competitive landscape, the company had to undergo a strategy update to rediscover its position in the market and determine the key factors for its future growth.
Together with Wihuri Metro-tukku, we created a new customer-centric strategy along with a wide range of concepts to make the strategy real. The partnership has tapped on many of the expertise areas at Kuudes: from customer insight to strategic positioning, creating concepts and improving customer experience – while keeping the core team same throughout the four years of collaboration.
The renewed strategy focuses on helping restaurants succeed with the help of Wihuri Metro-tukku’s unique expertise and experience from the past 120 years. Kuudes has been a strategic partner for Wihuri Metro-tukku since the collaboration started in 2019.
of personnel felt that the chosen strategy is the right one
restaurateurs were involved in the strategy formulating process
strategy workshops held with Wihuri Metro-tukku’s personnel
new brands for the renewed product & service portfolio
Wihuri Metro-tukku had already started their strategy work, but needed help in ensuring they find a desired position that fits the company and is based on customer insight.
Through their insight-driven work, Kuudes was able to design Wihuri Metro-tukku the core of their renewed customer-centric strategy: Wihuri Metro-tukku serves people – restaurateurs and restaurant owners – and should thus become a restaurant owner’s #1 partner. With such human-centric approach at the core of their strategy, Wihuri Metro-tukku embarked on a transition to become a future-proof wholeseller. The restaurateurs value humanity, personal service and everyday support and sparring – without compromising on diligent professionalism.
The insight work provided key trends and transitions such as digitalization, plant-based diets, locality as well as the increase in quality expectations. While Wihuri Metro-tukku had the expertise and experience in the restaurant business and its demands, the new positioning crystallized and brought the value of professional partnership to the best restaurateurs all around Finland. As a co-worker for restaurant owners, Wihuri Metro-tukku offers personal service grounded in everyday needs and requirements with customer-driven concepts and a product portfolio. Wihuri Metro-tukku supports and develops the restaurant business together with the restaurateurs.
Own product & service portfolio
After crystallizing the strategy, we started to plan the changes required to make the strategy real by creating six brands for Wihuri’s private label portfolio
Wihuri Metro-tukku’s own branded products and portfolio were at the core of their new approach, as the products are what make the restaurant owner’s day easy and smooth: leveraging the curated selection of products that are designed and produced to match the requirements of a restaurant business.
The problem was that there were a lot of products, but Wihuri Metro-tukku didn’t have a clear enough selection strategy, pricing strategy, or a strategy that would guide purchasing or marketing. Wihuri Metro-tukku had own brands as well as importing, such as wines. Kuudes helped Wihuri Metro-tukku to understand how the restaurant owners could get the most value out of their products and distinguish Wihuri Metro-tukku as the wholeseller that knows restaurant business the best. We carefully evaluated and validated various models and strategies for the portfolio together with Wihuri Metro-tukku’s team. Once the portfolio strategy was finalized, we created brand identities for all Wihuri Metro-tukku’s own brands.
Concepts for wholesale and restaurant business
With Wihuri Metro-tukku’s strong local presence across Finland, we needed to define the ways in which the renewed strategy would be seen at the 15 wholesale stores from Helsinki to Rovaniemi, in addition to the logistics center in Vantaa. We needed to redesign the role of the local wholeseller network, and define the business potential, desired customer experience as well as the impact for the nationwide Wihuri Metro-tukku brand.
After interviewing restaurateurs across the country, we planned scenarios based on the insight we gathered. In collaboration with Wihuri Metro-tukku, we created a roadmap for first developing the local stores, then expanding to various wholesale stores. Each store concept would follow shared value creation elements to ensure Wihuri Metro-tukku’s position as a partner for the restaurant businesses.
In 2023, Wihuri Metro-tukku opened a new flagship wholesale store designed by Kuudes.
The store is located in the Konepaja district of Helsinki, within a historic and spacious train assembly hall. The store caters to the city’s best restaurateurs with a versatile and wide selection and a central location. For regular city dwellers, the flagship store includes a cozy food culture center with pop-up restaurants and food-focused events.
Photos from the Konepaja flagship store by Ilona Toivonen.
Metro-tukku’s restaurant store is delicious and inspiring, an expert of its own kind that serves the needs of restaurant owners locally.
Wihuri Metro-tukku serves locally with a team that combines experience in the restaurant industry, expansive product knowledge and an understanding of the business and needs of restaurant businesses in their own region.
Wihuri Metro-tukku has the market’s most interesting and relevant portfolio of tailored products, as well as a comprehensive selection of basic, local and special products.
Wihuri Metro-tukku’s own portfolio of tailored products and services are at the core of their renewed strategy of being a work partner for restaurant owners.
“We were lucky to get Kuudes to drive this strategic transformation with us. They brought in their strong experience in building strategic positions that both fit the chosen customer segment as well as capture perfectly the true essence of our company – with over 90% of our employees agreeing on the chosen direction.
The expertise at Kuudes covers everything from insight-driven strategy work to the tiny detail of customer experience and making it real in the product and interior design. We at Wihuri Metro-tukku are excited about our current focus and how it has been translated into our sub-brands, packaging, wholesale store concepts and interiors as well as the upcoming flagship store in Konepaja.”
Director of Assortment & Marketing, Wihuri Metro-tukku