Morrisons has acquired seven Jessops stores in a bid to step up the expansion of its M Local convenience chain and fightback against its rivals Tesco and Sainsbury’s.
The grocer has bought four of the collapsed camera specialist’s shops in London, one in Scotland and two elsewhere in England.
Jessops collapsed into administration last month closing all of its 192 stores at the loss of 2,000 jobs. Dragon’s Den star Peter Jones acquired the brand from administrators PwC last week with the intention to relaunch Jessops as an online-only retailer.
Morrisons is also understood to be in talks to acquire HMV and Blockbuster stores as it looks to ramp up expansion of its convenience chain.
The UK’s fourth largest grocer’s chief executive Dalton Philips admitted Morrisons had lost out to rivals over the Christmas period due to a lack of exposure to convenience and online retail. The grocer recorded a 2.5% fall in like-for-like sales over the six weeks to December 30.
Morrisons has plans to rapidly expand the M Local chain to compete with Tesco Express and Sainsbury’s.
Morrisons revealed plans last year to open 70 M Local stores by the end of 2013. The retailer began testing the format in 2011.
Group strategy director Gordon Mowat was promoted to become Morrisons’ first managing director for convenience in October to spearhead M Local’s expansion in the Southeast.
The expansion will be supported its 100,000 sq ft food preparation and distribution centre in Feltham, West London acquired.
Morrisons today launched a new Payday Bonus promotion. Under the scheme, shoppers who spend £35 or more in consecutive weeks will receive £10 off when they present three vouchers.
- Rival Tesco is trialling a new scheme which will allow Clubcard holders to stream free TV and film. The Clubcard TV service, run by Tesco-owned streaming site Blinkbox, is currently being tested by Tesco staff.