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Morrisons to open 100 convenience stores in 2014/15

Morrisons has confirmed plans to open 100 M Local stores next financial year.

To date, the supermarket has opened 69 of its smaller format convenience stores, around half of which are in London and the South-east.

In its interim management statement, Morrisons said it remained “on track” to have 100 M Local stores open by the end of the current year and will open another 100 convenience stores next financial year.

The UK’s fourth-largest supermarket by sales has recently opened a distribution centre in Bury, Lancashire, to support the growth of its convenience network in the North-west.

Morrisons chief executive Dalton Philips said: “We continue to grow our sales in this tough market while making great progress on our strategy to be a multi-channel retailer.

“In convenience we are currently opening three M Locals a week, bringing the Morrisons brand to an ever-increasing number of new customers,” he added.

In September, Morrisons announced it would build fewer large supermarkets and focus instead on opening more convenience stores.

Sainsbury’s director of store development Dean Clegg recently told Construction News it intends to open 125 new convenience stores in 2014/15, taking its total number of Sainsbury’s Local stores to more than 700 across the country.

Morrisons said it was also on track to meet the target of refurbishing 100 stores to ‘fresh format’ this year, where the store layout is focused on fresh food.

The supermarket will launch online food deliveries in Warwickshire in January, which will be extended to Yorkshire soon after.

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