Sainsbury's has said it will open 60 new convenience stores in London and the South East over the next 12 months.

The announcement, made on Thursday (13 February), is a further sign Sainsbury's is looking to continue to expand its network of convenience stores.

In January, the retailer saw the number of its Sainsbury's Local stores exceed the number of its supermarkets for the first time with the opening of its 594th convenience outlet in Coventry. Sainsbury's currently has 185 Local stores in Greater London. 

According to the IGD, the value of the UK convenience sector was GBP35.6bn in the 12 months to April 2013, up 4.9% year-on-year.

The industry analysts have forecast the size of the market will grow to GBP46.2bn by 2018.