Cotswold Outdoor wants to increase its market share and is eyeing more shopping centre units as it expands.

The outdoors specialist, which has 44 stores, intends to take advantage of the troubles of rival Blacks in a market described as “fragmented and competitive” by Cotswold parent group AS Adventure executive chairman Frederic Hufkens.

With the closure of 89 stores by market leader Blacks, which is organising a CVA, Hufkens believes there is an opportunity for Cotswold to grow. This month it opened a store at Union Square in Aberdeen and similar locations are being sought to complement the retailer’s presence in popular walking areas.

Cotswold will launch three more shops before the end of the year and hopes to open another 10 in 2010.

AS Adventure is backed by private equity group Lion Capital.

In the 44 weeks to the end of October like-for-likes rose 9.7% and turnover this year is expected to jump about 30% to £72m.