Manfredo Tabor Store Manager Award Finalist

Category D: (International), Finalist

Manfredo Tabor

SPAR Gourmet 'am Fleischmarkt'
Wien, Austria

At age 24, Manfredo Tabor has already marked a decade of service to the grocery industry and become a role model. Students at the SPAR Academy in Vienna – a privately-owned school for SPAR apprentices – follow him as an example of a visionary leader and Academy alumnus who is taking food retailing into the future.

There’s a lot to learn from Manfredo. The store he manages in Vienna– the first SPAR Gourmet store when it opened the same year he was born – was rebuilt in 2022 and has become a flagship location. More than 1,800 shoppers visit the store each day, which is even more impressive considering that it is located in a competitive market. Under his direction, the store experienced a 30.1% growth in sales during the first year after the remodel.

Several factors contributed to the exceptional performance of the store, including a focus on fresh foods and ready-to-eat offerings. Shoppers appreciate the uniqueness and quality of items, such as Florentine-style focaccia which was inspired by a trip to Florence, Italy, and juices that are pressed in-store. Customers also enjoy talking with professional wine sommeliers and skilled butchers who are on staff. This emphasis has paid off, as sales across fresh departments, including deli, meat, fish, snacks, bread and pastries and cheese, grew nearly 40% year over year.

Manfredo takes pride in creating satisfying in-store experiences. In addition to expanding assortments for food lovers, he regularly organizes gourmet evenings with primarily local suppliers, featuring tasting stations and entertainment.

This manager is as focused on his team as he is on keeping customers happy, providing employees with formal benefits like loyalty bonuses and discounts and also encouraging work-life balance and health and wellness. Not surprisingly as a leader in his 20s, he has become a mentor to younger staff. In the area of talent management, too, his efforts are fruitful: his store has a 30% lower turnover rate than other SPAR Gourmet locations, while its training uptake has topped 91%.

In addition to receiving positive feedback from shoppers and associates alike through surveys, Manfredo has received other accolades. Several well-known influencers have touted his store, praising the variety of gourmet products, store design and employee friendliness. The Spar Gourmet ‘am Fleischmark” was also named the best meat and delicatessen department in the country in 2023 by the Austrian Meat Award Association.

He sees value in other kinds of accomplishments, too, including strides in sustainability and social causes. Teaming with the company Too-Good-To-Go, Manfredo takes steps to reduce food waste by giving shoppers the chance to buy items at a deep discount that would otherwise go to waste. He also works with a nonprofit group that offers home delivery via bicycle to long-term unemployed people to help them return to work life.