For the first time, Blakemore Retail has launched standalone Subway and Greggs departments as part of its strategy to improve and expand retail spaces across the business.
The store is situated next to the company’s SPAR store in Staplehurst, Kent. The Subway was previously housed inside SPAR Staplehurst but an empty unit nearby presented the opportunity to expand the franchise’s offer alongside a brand new Greggs department.
The new initiative forms part of Blakemore Retail’s strategy to grow sales in foodservice by creating a food-to-go hub that will bring vibrancy to the shopping parade at Staplehurst.
Feedback from customers has been positive with a lot of excitement around Blakemore Retail’s investment to introduce high-profile brands to the village.
Sales have been encouraging and are anticipated to grow as the local population becomes aware of the new store and what it has to offer.
The new Subway features digital menu boards, with customers being able to order products remotely using the Subway app. Customers of both franchises are able to take advantage of the free Wi-Fi and seating.
Blakemore Retail managing director Matt Teague commented: “At Blakemore Retail we have many years’ experience of running franchise food service businesses. However, they have always been part of an existing store.
“The empty unit near our Staplehurst store offered us an opportunity to learn about running the franchises as standalone departments, as there is definitely an appetite within our strategic programme to operate more standalone franchise opportunities across our territory.
“This latest development at Staplehurst fits perfectly with our strategic programme on many fronts, creating new retail selling space in which to grow the business, enhancing our foodservice business to deliver high gross margin sales and finally, allowing us the opportunity to remodel our existing SPAR proposition with a focus on developing and improving our fresh food sales.”
The additional space created by the Subway move has enabled ranges within the SPAR store to be extended and will pave the way for phase two of the store’s development which will see the introduction of County Bridge fresh meat and enhancement of the bakery proposition to grow fresh food participation in store.
Both franchises will operate in the same unit but will have different opening times, with Subway opening Monday – Thursday, 7am – 9pm; Friday and Saturday, 7am – 9:30pm and Sunday 8am – 9pm.
Greggs will open Monday to Saturday, 7am – 5pm and Sunday, 9am-5pm.