The Co-op opens new food store in Manchester

MANCHESTER, UK, 2015-11-27 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Co-op has opened its latest food store in Manchester today (Thursday, 19 November) following a £560,000 investment in Birley Fields, Hulme. The food store launch forms part of a more than £7.5M investment programme this year by The Co-op to transform and grow its convenience business in Greater Manchester, and follows the re-launch of its store in West Didsbury last week which was opened by Corrie’s Tina O’Brien following a near £300,000 makeover.

The investment in the new store – located by the student halls of residence on the MMU’s Birley Fields campus – has created 22 new jobs with vacancies remaining for in store retail roles.  The new store will open between 8am – 10pm, seven days a week, it has an in-store bakery, a focus on fresh, healthy foods and essentials and includes a Costa coffee express dispenser. Guests of honour at the store’s launch were children from nearby St Philip’s primary school who cut the ribbon and declared the new Co-op open for the community.

The store also launched its Community Pioneer role, where a member of the food store team also works to foster involvement in community activities, from local fundraising initiatives to helping to understand and develop solutions to meet community needs including support for the British Red Cross, The Co-op’s new charity partnership which will help to tackle social isolation and loneliness in communities.

Rebecca Howard, Manager of the new Hulme, Birley Fields, Co-op food store, said: “We are delighted to have made such a significant investment in Hulme to open our latest food store – the store looks fantastic and, it really is an exciting time for the whole team. The Co-op is investing to transform and grow its convenience business, enhancing the in-store experience while lowering the price of everyday essentials. We are confident that the new store will be a real asset to the community, enabling shoppers to pick up delicious food conveniently and, as a community retailer and a co-operative, it will play its part in local life too.”

There will be offers and promotions in and around the store to mark its launch. Students – who hold a NUS extra card – receive a 10% discount off their groceries in store. And, The Co-op has also announced a £125M investment in lowering the price of everyday essentials – a move which has seen it prune the price of over 100 lines of fresh fruit and vegetables including revolving offers on popular produce, called “fresh three”.

SOURCE: Co-operative Group Limited

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Re-opening of the Co-Op store on Birley Fields Campus. Hulme, Manchester. 19th November 2015.

Re-opening of the Co-Op store on
Birley Fields Campus.
Hulme, Manchester.
19th November 2015.

The Co-op opens new convenience store in Central London; its 110th store in a year

MANCHESTER, England, 2015-11-19 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Co-op this week opened its 110th new convenience store in 12 months when it launched a new store in central London.

The new shop in Shepherds Bush is part of an ambitious store development program that will see a further 120 stores opened in 2016.

David Roberts, Director of Estates Services, said: “The Co-operative Food has a clear and exciting vision which is to establish itself as the number one convenience store operator, providing a strong customer offer in communities across the UK.  As part of this strategy our acquisitions and refit programme is fundamental to its success.

“In the last 12 months we have carried out over 110 new store launches and over 250 store refits, investing millions in the estate. It’s comfortably the biggest store opening programme the business has undertaken.  We have a particular focus on London and the South East, which is an area that presents numerous exciting opportunities for expansion – and our plans address this.

“Whilst other retailers are scaling back their expansion plans or exiting the convenience sector, the Co-op continues to open new stores.”

Rob Bignold, Head of Acquisitions and New Store Development at the Co-op, said, “These are exciting times for our Acquisitions Team as we continue with our ambitious plans to expand our store estate. As a community retailer we are uniquely placed to engage with local people throughout the planning process.

“With an even bigger target for store openings in 2016, we are actively seeking freehold or leasehold sites, including existing businesses, right across the UK. We are flexible in our requirements and offer quick decisions to agents, developers and owners.“

The Co-op is responding to the consumer changes which is seeing more people shopping little and often, conveniently – shoppers buying for tonight, or for the next two or three, days, rather than shopping for the week or month.

Many people, living busy lives, decide what to eat just a few hours in advance, spontaneous shopping and a shift in social and lifestyle agendas has led to a growing number of people planning meals less and turning to shopping little and often.

The convenience market is currently worth £37.7bn and is projected to grow by 17 per cent to be worth £44.1bn in 2020, increasing its share of the total market from 21.2 per cent in 2015 to 22 per cent in 2020.

SOURCE: Co-operative Group Limited