Thursday, November 28, 2013

News: Waitrose opens Rotherham store

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Waitrose, the food shops of the John Lewis Partnership, has opened a new store in Rotherham.

The upmarket chain has 300 shops in the UK and is currently undergoing the biggest period of expansion in the company's history. The Rotherham store has opened at Woodhall Services on the M1 and is one of six new branches at Welcome Break sites across the UK as the supermarket accelerates its expansion plans with the motorway services operator.

Waitrose and Welcome Break signed a deal earlier in the year which extended the successful franchise partnership for a further ten years. The six new stores will create 120 jobs and means that Waitrose now has 25 branches at Welcome Break sites.

Waitrose and Welcome Break have been steadily rolling out new branches across the UK since its partnership began in 2009, and the pair have committed to opening more Waitrose shops in order to satisfy customer demand.

The Waitrose at Welcome Break format has proved very successful, with sales up by 17% compared to last year.

David Morton, director, Business to Business at Waitrose, said: "Our partnership with Welcome Break has proved a real success with customers and these new branches will give us the opportunity to increase our presence in other areas where customer demand is high. As these new stores are predominantly in the midlands and the north of England, our recently opened distribution centre in Leyland will also help to support our growth in the area."

Rod McKie, chief executive at Welcome Break, added: "The Welcome Break and Waitrose relationship has come a long way since 2009. Customers travelling on the motorway no longer view convenience stores as an option but more of a necessity. To be partnered with what we consider to be the best convenience supermarket offer out there is fantastic for our customers. In addition to these six new stores, we envisage opening a further six stores in the next 12 months."

For the financial year ending 27 July 2013, sales excluding VAT at Waitrose were up £372.4m (7.9%) to £5.07bn, and food only like-for-like sales grew by 3.0%.

New outlets for Harry Ramsden's and Subway are also due to open at Woodhall Services soon.

Waitrose website
Welcome Break website

Images: Welcome Break

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