Upmarket Australian food retailer Foodchain says it will open six more stores in an attempt to bring the group close to profitability by the end of next year. Owner David Jones also said the group expects to open 40 stores within the next six years, together worth A$500m (US$252.6m). This would allow the group to capture about 1% of the A$42bn Australian grocery market, reported Sydney’s Daily Telegraph.

The chain targets young, affluent professionals who seek convenient, yet high quality food. Many products are partly prepared prior to purchase to speed up home consumption. It is believed the venture has generated losses in the order of A$12-13m, but David Jones evidently still has faith in the format. General manager Shane Tremble, who has been steering the group since May 1999, indicated the group was first seeking new store locations in the suburbs of Sydney.