Irish convenience store chain Mace has said it plans to invest €50m (US$57.1m) in a move into the supermarket sector.

The company plans to open 30 Mace supermarkets by 2004, to add to its more than 450 convenience stores in Ireland, reported the Irish Times.

“This new store format represents part of Mace segmentation strategy to grow the Mace business in Ireland,” Conor Whelan, chairman of Mace Ireland, was quoted by the Irish Times as saying.  

“The overall strategy will be to continue to develop the Mace convenience offering on high streets, in neighbourhoods and on the forecourt, while introducing a larger retail format to satisfy the new and emerging opportunity for daily shopping,” he added.