Co-op has opened its third franchise store this year, as part of its rapid franchise expansion.
The former SPAR has been extended and transformed into a 3,000 sq ft Co-op store in St Helens, as the retailer expects to more than double the franchise estate in 2021.
Martin Rogers, Head of New Channels at Co-op, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Stephen and his store to the Co-op family, which is testament to the compelling franchise model we can offer independent retailers. Located in a great community and opposite a large 6th form college, this store is going to help us reach a younger demographic and help drive awareness of the Co-op values to new audiences.”
Stephen Richards, Co-op St Helens store owner, said: “We’re really excited to launch Co-op’s first franchise store in the town. It looks fantastic and we are looking forward to welcoming the community into their new store, where we have worked to develop the range, choice, products and services locally that will create a really compelling offer in the community.”
Customers will benefit from a comprehensive range of fresh, healthy produce, ready meals and pizzas along with an in-store bakery, award-winning wines, Fairtrade, free-from, and vegan options and a wide range of every-day grocery essentials. This is teamed with a large food to go proposition to serve the college including sandwiches, snacks and drinks, healthy snacking, Costa Coffee, hot food, Dots Dounts and soon Tango Iceblast will be added. The local community also benefits with funding to local causes through the Co-op Membership scheme.
Co-op franchise is operating in universities and communities up and down the country, including independent retailers, university campuses, Nisa partners, partnership with a catering business, Gather & Gather and Costcutter company owned stores, highlighting breadth, diversity and the agility of the proposition. Through its full-service franchise model, Co-op offers a unique proposition for independent retailers who share the Co-op values and principles to become part of the Co-op community, giving more customers than ever access to great stores, in great locations providing award winning food and drink, conveniently.
Martin adds: “Our franchise offering has gone from strength to strength as we focus on generating mutual value with forward thinking like-minded partners and our expertise and learnings in this area are helping us access new markets all over the country.”
The retailer has recently been upgraded by the British Franchise Association (bfa) to an Associated Member of the regulatory body, reinforcing the retailer as a credible franchise partner. Responsible for setting high quality standards of franchising across the UK, the bfa endorsement provides potential franchise partners with the reassurance that the model works.
For more information visit the newly launched Co-op franchise website which showcases the benefits of being a Co-op franchisee from store design, tailored ranges, marketing and membership as well as hearing what it’s like to be part of the Co-op community from its franchise partners.