UK grocery retailer Waitrose is to open 39 stores this year with the creation of around 3,000 jobs.
The outlets, Waitrose said today (5 January), will include 12 full-sized supermarkets, including five branches in the Channel Islands to open between February and April and stores in Stratford, Raynes Park, Wimbledon, Exeter, Marlow and Newton Mearns in Glasgow.
The remainder will be convenience shops in locations including Old Brompton and Palmers Green. These are scheduled to open this month.
Jobs created from the new stores will include management and non-management roles, as well as food specialists in meat, cheese, fish and wines.
The announcement comes on the back of a “successful” Christmas for the retailer, which saw sales grow by 8.9% and 5.4% on a like-for-like basis for the 23-day period to 23 December.
Beyond Christmas, total sales were up by 9.7% and 5.9% on a like-for-like basis for the five days from 27 to 31 December. Sales were driven by a “particularly strong” New Year’s Eve with Champagne and party food top of customers’ lists.
Waitrose managing director Mark Price said: “Our strong Christmas trading figures give us confidence for the year ahead, when we will be continuing to invest in the future growth of our business.”
He added: “In the current climate we’re very pleased to be employing 3,000 new partners within our business.”