UK: The Co-op plans to open 100 new food stores this year and refurbish a further 200 stores in a £200m investment programme.
Around one-third of the new stores are planned for London and the South East. Last month, the Co-op announced that it had agreed terms for a new £45m 661,000ft2 distribution depot in Bedfordshire. It is expected to open in 2022.
New London stores are set to include: Berwick Street, Soho; Chiswick; Greenwich; Ilford; Queens Park and, the Co-op is also “on track” to open new food-to-go format stores at Baker Street Station and in a railway arch at the Minories. Over 40 new or improved Co-op stores will launch in Scotland in 2019 – including sites in Alford, Aberdeenshire; Banchory, Edinburgh; Falkirk; Forres; Galston and Glasgow. In Wales, the Co-op has plans for at least 10 new stores with openings in: Cardiff, Carmarthen, Hendreforgan, Machen, Pen Y Groes, Prestatyn and St Athan.
“Shifts in consumer shopping trends has seen ease, speed and convenience continuing to rise in importance for time-pressed shoppers. The right location and range tailored to fulfil the shopping needs of a community is a cornerstone of our approach, and there has been an evolution in how we choose new locations and, innovate our offer,” said Stuart Hookins, Co-op’s director of portfolio and development.