Asda set to create 9,000 new jobs in 2008
ASDA announced today (20th February) its biggest jobs programme this decade, creating more than 9,000 new jobs through new store openings, extensions and business expansion.
7,000 jobs will be created over the next twelve months through the opening of between 10 and 12 new superstores, 10 Living stores and 12 extensions to existing outlets. In addition to this, a further 1500 jobs will be created through the expansion of Home Shopping and ASDA Direct.
The new store programme, which begins with the opening of Andover store in Hampshire this March, will add over 800,000 sq ft to the retailer’s estate representing an investment of around £400m.
2008 will also see the unveiling of ASDA’s latest high efficiency store in Bootle, Merseyside. The 40k sq ft town centre store is ASDA’s latest energy efficient store model, representing an investment of £16m. Due to open in November this year, the timber-framed store boasts a host of sustainable features, including, recycled bricks, a recycled aluminium roof, rainwater harvesting and natural lighting. The store will be 50% more energy efficient than a typical ASDA store.
The continued roll-out of ASDA’s pharmacy business will create 500 new jobs, through the opening of 50 new ASDA in-store pharmacies. This growth will create over 100 pharmacist positions and 400 new colleague jobs and take the number of ASDA pharmacies from 147 to almost 200.
The acceleration of Home Shopping to a further 40 stores, will create over 1300 new jobs, rolling out to over 95% of UK postcodes. While the roll out of ASDA Direct, the retailer’s online catalogue business, will create 200 new jobs through the opening of a new distribution centre. The service, which gives customers access to over 700,000 non food items will grow significantly, taking the number of products in excess of 1 million. The retailer estimates that by 2011, ASDA’s on-line business will be generating over £1bn sales per annum.
Chief Financial Officer, Judith McKenna commented:
“This major investment demonstrates our on-going commitment to bringing low prices and fantastic service to even more people across the UK.
“We have an impressive track record of regenerating areas at the edge of and in town centres throughout the UK, showing our ongoing commitment to local communities.”
Expansion plans for 2008 include, amongst others, new stores in Andover, Kent, Dalgety Bay in Scotland and Bridgend, Mid Glamorgan