Co-op Group trials "ultimate" format for larger stores

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The Co-operative Group is trialling a new format for its medium to large stores, in a bid to provide the “ultimate” convenience store.

The Everyday Convenience Plus programme will take place over the next 12 weeks in stores located in Horbury (West Yorkshire), East Leake (Leicestershire) and Walderslade (Kent).

The three stores are all between 7,000sq ft and 11,000sq ft and have undergone a £3.8m refit.

The format is underpinned by enhanced fresh ranges which will showcase prepared and semi-prepared meal ideas, with the stores catering specifically for a three-day top-up shop.

A wider range of non-food items, including music and entertainment, homewares, travel accessories, party and special occasion items, will also be available. In-store digital communications will deliver brand messages on membership, community and value.

Co-op customer director Jemima Bird said a decision on rolling out the format to other stores would be made following the three-month trial in February.

“The trial is an extremely innovative and exciting collaboration between our customer, formats and operations teams and shows how we’re able to tailor our in-store proposition to establish a blueprint for the modern convenience store,” she said.

“An improved top-up offering, set against the backdrop of visually stunning stores, which are simple and easy to navigate, is one that we can see is already resonating with our members and customers in these key locations.”

A spokesman said the trial was not related to the Nisa takeover deal.

Readers' comments (4)

  • This looks like it may work.It will all depend on price and range on the non food aspect.Need to make a point of difference between themselves and competitors

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  • They'd do a lot better if they stopped pretending 11000 square feet is a convenience store not a supermarket. Take a look at any reviews of their large stores and two complaints stand out, limited food range and high prices. Co-op group are arguably the best multiple c store operator but they need to figure out how to run supermarkets or give up and sell them.

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  • anything but intuitive layout. anything but applicable to regular small shopping with top ups and convenience. Perhaps I am not the target market but I would expect there are plenty of 'me's out there.

    Convenience is a varied and wide concept - not just trendy ready meals. How about buying something to give the kids for tea, getting a loaf of bread and milk, something to put in sandwiches. sufficient range and a pricing strategy that enables consumers to complete a shop because you dont want to fight your way round a large supermarket or store too much at home, or you want buy on impulse. Intuitive routing round the store - cant find a thing and that is after visiting a number of times.

    From spending on average probably around £30-50 per week I estimate we now spend around £0-20 depending on whether we buy pizza.

    Switched to shopping at Morrisons and now using the coop for catfood, pizza, wine, milk and chickenwings (for the dogs)

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  • I have just visited my local co op in East Leake. It has just reminded me why I have decided to go elsewhere for my main shopping.
    I prefer eating food which is not pissa or microwave variety. I like my vegetables to be organic, and i was able to purchase these to some extent previously. And I do not use the so called express lane, so have to queue for ages to pay for my purchases.
    Such a shame.

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