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|Products||Grocers' shops, convenience shops, discount shops, hypermarkets and more|
|Revenue||€97billion (2017) |
Spar, trademarked as SPAR, is an international group of independently owned and operated retailers and wholesalers who work together in partnership under the Spar brand and franchise brand with approximately 12,500 shops in 42 countries worldwide. It was founded in 1932 by Adriaan van Well. Through its affiliate organisations, Spar operates in most European countries, parts of Africa, Asia and Oceania. Its headquarters are in Amsterdam.
The name was originally DE SPAR, an acronym of the Dutch phrase Door Eendrachtig Samenwerken Profiteren Allen Regelmatig[note 1] (English: through united co-operation everyone regularly profits). The acronym was chosen in order to resonate with the verb "spar" or "spaar" which means "save [money]" in some languages, among them Dutch, German, and Scandinavian languages. As the organisation expanded across Europe, the name was abbreviated by dropping the "DE" prefix. There are some international naming variants:
- In Italy, the name is still Despar, though in keeping with the international branding, the "Spar" section of the logo is highlighted, and the larger shops are still called Eurospar and Interspar. In Austria, Despar is Spar's Italian food shop brand.
- In Japan, some shops operated under the name Hotspar, although the shop logo colouring remained unchanged. Closed end 2016.
- In China, the name is 家家悦 (pinyin: jiā jiā yuè; literally: "every family is pleased"), though the international branding is kept unchanged, with the Chinese name typically printed above.
Spar was founded in 1932 in the South Holland town of Zegwaart (now Zoetermeer). In 1953 an International Spar office opened in Amsterdam to control and further develop the organisation throughout Europe and other continents. Most Spar shops are in Europe, but they can also be found in a few countries outside of Europe, such as Oman, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Swaziland, Australia, Mauritius, China, India, Japan (closed 2016), United Arab Emirates, Vanuatu, Greenland (closed 2016) and Angola.
A Spar shop may be owned independently, by a franchisee, or be part of a chain, depending on the model applied in any given country. The owners of the parent company vary from country to country and may include the shop owners themselves. The name and the current logo was most recently revised in 1968 by Raymond Loewy and has remained unchanged ever since.
Spar opened in the Republic of Vanuatu on 1 December 2009, ending Au Bon Marché's grocery monopoly.
In July 2014 Spar Group South Africa opened its first supermarket in Angola. In August 2014 the group acquired 80% of the BWG Group, which had outlets in Ireland and southwest England.
The first SPAR shop in Oman was inaugurated in January 2015 in Muscat. Spar Oman plans to open more shops in the coming months as part of its expansion plans in Oman. Spar opened its first store in Qatar in 2017, with the second store opening in 2018. A further two stores are planned for 2018. 
In 2017 Ceylon Biscuits Limited in Sri Lanka acquired a license to operate Spar brand in Sri Lanka as Spar Lanka. This is a joint venture of Ceylon Biscuits Limited and SPAR Group Ltd South Africa.. They opened the first store in Thalawathugoda, Colombo. The future plan is to open 50 outlets in the country by 2023.
In most, but not all countries, SPAR operates shops of different types and sub-brands. SPAR Express, SPAR Neighbourhood, EUROSPAR and INTERSPAR. 
The Eurospar name is used in Europe and Superspar in South Africa. These are mid-sized supermarkets. They are designed to fit in a niche between convenience shops and traditional supermarkets.
- Spar Express
- Spar Drive-Thru
There was a drive-through Spar on the Cliftonville Road in Belfast, Northern Ireland. This has now been converted to a Centra shop, and retained the drive-through for a while afterhand, but now no longer has one.
- Spar Gourmet
Some small Spar shops in Austria are called Spar Gourmet, since the Austrian Spar Group took over the supermarket chains Julius Meinl in 2000. The standard range is extended to local and global delicacies.
International statistics (2014)
|Country||Sales (in millions)||No. of shop||Sales area (m²)||Sales per area||Average shop
|Angola||€6.6||1||1,200||€5,465/m²||1,200||2014||The SPAR Group Ltd.|
|Austria||€5,910.-||1,539||1,089,677||€5,424/m²||708||1954||Spar Austria Group|
|Belgium||€887.2||281||141,799||€6,257/m²||505||1947||Colruyt and Lambrechts|
|Botswana||€117.5||28||28,793||€4,083/m²||1,028||2004||The SPAR Group Ltd.|
|Croatia||€317.9||50||87,384||€3,638/m²||1,748||2004||Spar Austria Group|
|Hungary||€1,584.0||493||408,368||€3,805/m²||828||1992||SPAR Austria Group|
|Indonesia||18||2015||Ramayana Lestari Sentosa|
|Italy||€3,119.4||1,385||790,969||€3,944/m²||571||1959||SPAR Austria Group|
|Mozambique||€40.3||3||6,451||€6,243/m²||2,150||2012||The SPAR Group Ltd.|
|Namibia||€132.1||28||30,517||€4,327/m²||1,090||2004||The SPAR Group Ltd.|
|Netherlands||€431.6||244||98,506||€4,382/m²||404||1932||SPAR Holding B.V.|
|Oman||€ 6.319||3||2015||Khimji Ramdas|
|Qatar||2||2018||Al Wataniya International Holding|
|Saudi Arabia||2016||SPAR Saudi Arabia|
|Slovenia||€729.6||100||146,873||€4,967/m²||1,596||1992||SPAR Austria Group|
|South Africa||€4,255.-||821||933,886||€4,556/m²||1,137||1963||The SPAR Group Ltd.|
|Switzerland||€498.9||181||74,228||€6,721/m²||410||1989||SPAR Handels AG|
|United Arab Emirates||€54.5||4||6,200||€8,788/m²||1,550||2011||SPAR United Arab Emirates|
|United Kingdom||€3,193.2||2,352||350,240||€9,117/m²||149||1956||SPAR UK|
- Dutch pronunciation: [doːr eːnˈdrɑxtɪx ˈsaːmə(n)ʋɛrkə(n) proːfiˈteːrə(n) ˈɑlə(n) reːɣəlˈmaːtəx]
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- "Cool Nordic". YouTube. 14 February 2013. Retrieved 25 February 2015.
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- [dead link]
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- "SPAR Sri Lanka". Retrieved 2018-05-31.
- "* Spar continues expansion with entry into Sri Lanka". Retrieved 2018-05-31.
- Eric Pfanner (12 November 2004). "An international grocery giant is emerging from the shadows". The New York Times. Retrieved 25 February 2015.
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- "Shop formats". Spar South Africa. Retrieved 26 February 2017.
- "Inquiry into Town Centre Regeneration". Northern Ireland Assembly Archive Site. 20 October 2009. Retrieved 1 October 2013.
- "Chronologie: Von Konsum bis Rewe". Derstandard.at. 24 February 2008. Retrieved 1 October 2013.
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- "ASPIAG Countries". ASPIAG Austria SPAR International. Retrieved 9 April 2016.