Waitrose is to expand its convenience estate over the next 12 months. It plans to open six convenience stores under the Little Waitrose brand in London by the end of 2012.
Fulham Palace Road, Muswell Hill, Parsons Green and Vauxhall have all been earmarked as sites, with two other locations yet to be announced. Outside of London, it is planning to open stores in Ipswich and Birmingham over the next two months.
Waitrose director of property Diana Hunter said convenience was a key sector for the chain. “We have quickly established ourselves within the convenience sector and sales are strong,” she said. “This underlines the role Little Waitrose will play in driving our growth and our ambition to make us accessible for everyone in London.”
Waitrose claims the six London stores will create 350 new jobs, although did not reveal the split between full-time and part-time roles.
Following a trial, the Little Waitrose brand was rolled out last year. There are 28 Waitrose c-stores throughout the UK, 23 of which operate under the Little Waitrose branding. The other five are set to be rebranded later this year.