Debenhams is set to open a new store to anchor the Southside Shopping Centre, which is to undergo a £40m redevelopment.

It will be the first department store to enter the area and will trade across 81,880 sq ft store over the centre’s Arndale Walk area, which is being demolished as part of the redevelopment. Debenhams will join the centre’s existing retail line-up which includes Topshop, Office, New Look and Next.

Work will begin on the centre early next year and Debenhams is expected to open its doors some time before spring 2015.

Debenhams’ acquisition manager Gareth Dougherty said he is “delighted” to increase the retailer’s London footprint.

“Opening in Southside Shopping Centre continues to build on our core strategy of delivering the right store in the right location,” he added.

It is one of 17 stores to be opened in the next five years - a move announced by the department store this morning in its year-end update.

The financing for the redevelopment comes from Metro Shopping Fund, a joint venture between Delancey and Land Securities, which acquired the site in 2005.

Retail asset manager of Delancey Helen McVie said: “The catchment and location of Southside make it an obvious choice for targeted investment.

“Our asset management drive has already seen the scheme transformed from the tired former Arndale we purchased back in 2005 to a much sought after regional trading location.”

Debenhams has upped its expansion and online targets after delivering profit growth in the UK and overseas. For the year to September 1 UK sales rose 2.6% to £2.2bn while like-for-like sales excluding VAT rose 2% in the department store chain’s domestic market. Group pre-tax profits rose 4.2% to £158.3m in the same period.