Woolies speeds up store refits

Woolworths is accelerating its store upgrade programme next year in an effort to boost sales.

At the Goldman Sachs 15th Annual Retail Conference, chief executive Trevor Bish-Jones said that turnover rose 10 per cent at the 10 locations converted before Christmas.

Some 27 stores have been overhauled and the number will rise to 60 by the end of the year, increasing to 100 a year between 2005 and 2007.

Bish-Jones said 'up to 400' large and medium stores will be converted at a cost of between£23 and£37 per sq ft.