Monday, February 25 12:32:45
Centra today said it plans a major expansion programme, taking on 400 new staff as its full year sales topped E1.4 billion last year.
The retail chain grew by 1.6pc in 2012, it said.
Speaking today at Centra's National Retailer Conference in Killarney, Martin Kelleher, Managing Director, also announced that, through a E20 million investment programme by retailers, the brand will add the 400 jobs as 20 new stores are added to its network in 2013.
He said that 100 of these will be new jobs created by the opening of a number of new greenfield sites, with the balance created by store extensions and other independent stores joining the Centra network.
"Centra's success, despite the challenging economic environment, can be attributed to our continued focus on delivering value and providing innovative convenience solutions for shoppers. In 2012, we increased value to our customers by 15pc or almost E90 million, through price reductions and continued to evolve our range to stay in tune with consumer trends. This is illustrated by an increase of almost E5 million in our 'Food-to-Go' sales, while our new 'Table for Two' range of convenience dinners, delivering sales of over E1.2m," he said.
"We opened 18 new stores last year, demonstrating the continuing preference of Irish shoppers to shop local, saving time and petrol, particularly when they can avail of good value and an innovative range. Together with our retail partners we employ almost 10,000 people, making us one of the biggest employers in the country. As our stores are all locally owned, we also invest back into the community by sourcing from local producers and making a real difference by contributing to local sports clubs and charities. For example, in 2012 our retailers spent E40 million directly with local suppliers and also donated E2.1 million to community organisations."
"In 2013 we will continue to adapt to the budget conscious customer by investing in further price reductions, launching new products to cater for specific segments and leveraging our innovation agenda to connect with the modern consumer."