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Retail

Iceland Announces Irish Expansion Plans

Iceland has announced plans for a significant expansion in the Irish market, which looks set to grow the business from eight stores to between 50 and 70, reports British retail magazine The Grocer.

Iceland’s Irish operation will focus on the traditional Iceland format, rather than The Food Warehouse format, on which its UK expansion plans have relied.

Managing director of Iceland’s Irish arm, Ron Metcalfe, told The Grocer that the chain may open up to 70 new stores in the next five years, adding that there are currently 42 "in the pipeline".

“There is no reason why we should not have a store in every town and city in Ireland,” he remarked.

He confirmed that five Iceland stores would open this year, and Iceland could open as many as ten, depending on planning regulations.

After closing its Clonmel store last August, Iceland went on to open outlets in Midleton and Waterford in the first week of December.

While Metcalfe said that the strategy for Ireland would be quite different to the UK, he said that there were opportunities for The Food Warehouse, too, hopefully in Dublin, Limerick or Galway.

“It’s nothing we can’t deal with, but it takes a little bit longer than in the UK. There are a few more hurdles to jump through,” Metcalfe said.

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