Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg joined Sainsbury’s in opening its new 250,000 sq ft Thameside distribution centre in South East London, which is set to create more than 600 jobs when fully operational.
Operated in partnership with Wincanton, the £30 million facility hopes to support the growth of 200 of the retailer’s convenience stores from London to Brighton, in the South East.
“It’s a long-term commitment from Sainsbury’s and Wincanton and is a sign of their ambitions for growth,” said Clegg.
“As well as the hundreds of jobs this depot creates, it supports the expansion of Sainsbury’s across the rest of the capital, and the South East – securing greater opportunities for people across the area.”
The retailer recently announced plans to accelerate the expansion of its convenience store network in these areas, with plans to open 50 new stores by 2014, which itself is set to create more than 1,000 local jobs.
“Customers tell us that they like to shop little and often to save money and reduce food waste. Our convenience store business is meeting these trends and the team here at Thameside are perfectly placed to support the growth of our stores,” said John Rogers, Sainsbury’s chief financial officer.
Sainsbury’s has said the new site’s general waste, including paper, cardboard and plastic, will be either recycled or put to positive use, such as being turned into fuel, as part of its 20×20 sustainability targets.
Wincanton will now be responsible for managing the logistics operation for the majority of Sainsbury’s Local stores across London, as part of the venture.