Whole Foods reaffirms plans to ‘expand UK footprint’ despite impending store closures

Whole Foods Market has insisted it plans to expand its UK footprint, despite its decision to close two stores and its Dartford distribution centre.

The upmarket grocer, which is owned by Amazon, will shut the doors of both its Richmond and Fulham Broadway Whole Market stores while ceasing operations at its Dartford site, reported The Grocer.

However, the organic food retailer said the move was aimed to “pave the way for growth here in the UK”, and will allow Whole Foods to “invest in enhancing the customer and team member experience as we expand our footprint to serve more customers and communities in the UK”.

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It is understood the retailer has signed a lease for a new location on Kings Road in Chelsea, which will open later this year.

Whole Foods has also hired real estate advisor Newmark to search for prospective new sites, with a spokesperson telling The Grocer that the retailer was “actively exploring new sites and looks forward to opening more stores”.

The supermarket, which was bought by Amazon in 2017, has seven stores across the UK, all in London, with its High Street Kensington site currently undergoing a store redevelopment.

Earlier this month, Whole Foods Market introduced over 141 staple UK brands to its stores in the coming months after they passed its approval process.

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