Morrisons buys Blockbuster stores to gain high street presence

Morrisons buys Blockbuster stores to gain high street presence

Morrisons has purchased of 49 Blockbuster stores from the companies’ administrators, Deloitte, as it begins an accelerated expansion of its Morrisons M local convenience estate. The deal quickly follows Morrisons’ acquisition of seven Jessops stores earlier in the year.

The Blockbuster purchase gives Morrisons quick access to a significant number of high street and neighbourhood locations across the country, particularly in South East England as it accelerates the expansion of its Morrisons M local convenience offering. Morrisons says it hopes to have the stores trading by the end of the summer.

The retailer has stated its intention to open at least 70 Morrisons M local stores by the end of 2013, starting with London and the South East, where it has acquired a 100,000 sq ft multi-temperature distribution centre in Feltham, West London. This will become the hub of a bespoke distribution network in the region and is set to open later this month.

Gordon Mowat, managing director of Morrisons Convenience said: “We are rolling out the Morrisons M local estate at pace this year and these acquisitions give us a kick start in securing a solid foothold in this key sector. The convenience market is growing as more people shop locally and we want to be in a position to take advantage of this.

“Morrisons M locals offer a differentiated fresh shopping experience with half the space dedicated to fresh food and scratch cooking all at great prices.”

Morrisons will use its position as the largest fresh food manufacturer in the UK to put fresh food at the centre of its convenience offer. All Morrisons M locals will have over 100 lines of fresh fruit and vegetables as well as strong presence for fresh meat, fish and bakery.

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