Morrisons will open its first stores in the Channel Islands after announcing a partnership with local wholesalers Sandpiper.
The Bradford-based retailers will convert almost all of Sandpiper's 43 mini supermarkets and convenience shops into Morrisons Daily stores while the remaining outlets will be supplied by their Safeway products.
The supermarkets say the scale offered by Morrisons retail operations will result in lower procurement costs that will be passed on to the consumers in Jersey and Guernsey.
James Badger, Morrisons wholesale director, said: "We are pleased to be announcing a partnership with a strong franchise partner in Sandpiper and the opportunity to bring Morrisons quality and value to customers in the Channel Islands. As Morrisons becomes broader and stronger, our brand is becoming more accessible to more customers."
Morrisons struck a deal in July last year to supply McColl’s convenience stores, as well as supplying produce for Amazon’s Pantry delivery service in 2016, as wholesale work becomes increasingly attractive to retailers.
Kantar Worldpanel figures revealed they face stiff competition however from German discounters Aldi and Lidl, after losing market share despite a sales increase of 2.2 per cent in the past three months.
Sandpiper’s CEO Tony O’Neill said the partnership is “good news for local consumers”.
“This is a significant step-change for our food retail operation. All our mini-supermarket Food Halls will be converted to the Morrisons Daily which will entail a seven-figure store upgrade investment programme,” he said.
“This new agreement will also be good news for local consumers. The Morrisons scale will help us to save on our operating costs which we can pass on to our customers by lowering food prices as each store is converted.
“We’re also looking forward to introducing the ‘Morrisons Makes It’ products. Morrisons is unique in making more than half its own fresh food products, including: fish, meat, bakery, fruit and veg. They’re also British farming’s biggest supermarket customer allowing our customers access to Morrisons-branded fresh meat which is 100 per cent British.”
The 12-month store conversion programme will commence in late spring, and once started is estimated to create around 100 new job roles as the business grows according to Sandpiper.