Co-op to open new stores and create jobs

The Co-op is to open or extend 65 stores in the coming months under a multi-million pound investment programme which will create up to 1,000 new jobs.

More than 100 outlets will also receive major makeovers as part of a £130 million programme for its stores.

The new jobs are in addition to the 1,000 permanent roles that came from temporary jobs created during the economic lockdown.

Up to 12 new Co-op franchise stores are also set to launch this year, including at Oxford Brookes University and Stirling University, with more university locations planned for 2021.

The Co-op said its research shows that most adults have relied on their local convenience store for food and other goods in recent months, adding that it has expanded its online shop.

David Roberts, managing director, Co-op Property, said: “Multiple factors motivate consumers, with ease, choice and added services chief among them.

“We continually look for new locations, sites which are definitively convenient in their community.”

Association of Convenience Stores chief executive, James Lowman, commented: “Convenience stores have firmly established themselves as a place that local communities can rely on, not just for groceries but for a growing range of services that have kept the nation going during the last few months.

“This commitment to investing in stores in the coming months is testament to the importance of the convenience sector and the role that local shops play in people’s everyday lives.”

Over 50 new stores will open by the end of the year, in areas including Wrexham, London, Poole, Leeds and Guildford.

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