Superquinn Alive and Kicking: An Illustration of Innovation in the Irish Grocery Market

Edmund O'Callaghan, Dublin Institute of Technology
Mary Wilcox, Dublin Institute of Technology

Document Type Conference Paper

European Association for Education & Research in Commercial Distribution Conference Proceedings


Superquinn is one of Ireland’s most successful indigenous retailers operating in an intensely competitive grocery market. Despite the arrival of large overseas retailers and an increased level of acquisition and alliance activity, it has survived and thrived. The company attributes its success to its innovation strategy. The practice of innovation now permeates all facets and functions of the Irish grocery sector and consequently is a pre-requisite for maintaining competitive advantage and ensuring business success. This paper illustrates many Superquinn innovations, and relates its strategy to themes within innovation literature. Based on an in-depth interview with its managing director, Feargal Quinn, it provides insights into the philosophy that underpins an innovative retail culture and illustrates the conception and implementation of innovative practice.