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Morrisons adds over 200,000 sq ft of new space as part of nationwide expansion surge

Marrisons Article Banner  Morrisons adds over 200,000 sq ft of new space as part of nationwide expansion surge  morrisons article bannerInvestment in both convenience and superstore formats

Morrisons has delivered a surge of new store space in the first three months of 2013 adding approximately 200,000 sq ft of new sales space across the country.

The expansion is part of the firm’s strategy to increase total sales space by two million sq ft (net sales) within the next three years via its traditional superstore and new Morrisons M local formats.

Through a combination of openings, acquisitions and planning consents, Morrisons is stepping up its UK presence and making significant inroads into the convenience market and into London and the South, both areas where it is currently under-represented.

The new stores include:

– Two Morrisons M local stores in London at Ealing and Hornchurch (both stores have approximately 3,000 sq ft sales areas and feature Morrisons’ latest convenience offer)

– A new flagship superstore at Harrow as part of a significant mixed-use development.  The scheme comprises a 31,000 sq ft (net sales) Morrisons foodstore with 142 residential units above

– A new Morrisons on a ‘gateway’ urban regeneration site at Royal Leamington Spa (41,000 sq ft net sales).  The store features an abundance of sustainable technologies including 420 solar photo-voltaic panels, roof lighting and rainwater harvesting systems

– The first purpose-built Fresh Format Morrisons for Sussex – a 25,000 sq ft (net sales) store in Littlehampton

– A highly sustainable Morrisons in Sittingbourne in Kent.  The 37,000 sq ft (net sales) store features on-site wind turbines and has been awarded a BREEAM ‘excellent’ rating

– Further north, new Morrisons foodstores in Elland in West Yorkshire (25,000 sq ft net sales), Blyth in Northumberland (30,500 sq ft net sales) and Middlewich in East Cheshire (16,500 sq ft net sales)

Terry Hartwell, Group Property Director at Morrisons, said: “We’re actively targeting growth and want to add two million sq ft of net new sales space to our store portfolio within the next three years.  By adding over 200,000 sq ft to our footprint in the first three months of 2013 alone, we’re sending a clear message to our customers and to the property market that we’re keen to acquire more stores and more sites right across the UK.  With the flexibility our Morrisons M local convenience format now gives, we have a property proposition that’s right for all locations and for sites of all sizes.  We’re focused on securing quality new space to bring Morrisons’ great fresh food offer to more people than ever before.”

Morrisons’ property requirements now span from 2,000 sq ft net sales (3,000 sq ft gross) convenience stores through to 40,000 sq ft net sales (75,000 sq ft gross) superstores.  Its total store portfolio stands at more than 27 million sq ft across the UK (gross).

The Morrisons M local convenience format was introduced in 2012 and Morrisons has a target to have at least 100 M locals open and trading by the end of the 2013/14 financial year.

The business is focusing on high-footfall locations including High Streets, transport hubs and district centres.  It will look at new-build, refurbishment or conversions for new convenience stores, freehold or leasehold.

© Food and Drink Industry

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