Friday 28th Oct 2016 - Logistics Manager

Sainsbury’s to open first dark store

Sainsbury’s is to open its first dedicated dark store to support plans for its rapidly growing online grocery business which reached the milestone of annualised sales of £1bn in September.

The company has secured the former Royal Mail building in Bromley by Bow and intends to redevelop the facility in East London aiming to fully open and serve an extra 20,000 customers each week within two years from the 185,000 sq ft facility. It will create up to 375 extra jobs.

Jon Rudoe, Sainsbury’s director of online digital and cross channel, said: “We work hard to ensure we deliver the very best service to our customer and the opening of the new centre will enable us to maintain this. The site will be purpose built with the Sainsbury’s customer in mind and will support our existing store based operation.

“I am confident that this new facility will take our online grocery operation to the next level and put us in the perfect position to meet the growing demand of London and the South East.”

With demand set to increase rapidly in the future Sainsbury’s is seeking to build extra capacity into its online business in London. Sainsbury’s first launched its online grocery business in 1999.

The former Royal Mail building in Bow totals 185,000 sq ft which is held on a lease by Royal Mail until 2022 at a rent in excess of £1.5 million (£8.10 per sq ft). It was constructed in 2002 and has the capacity to be extended to provide up to an additional 40,000 sq ft. Joint letting agents were Capita Symonds and DTZ.