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Costco prepares to open new store in Southampton

A GIANT new cash and carry store in Southampton, which is providing hundreds of new jobs, opens Saturday 4th May.

The new Costco warehouse has been eagerly awaited by job-hunters and bargainhunters alike, and hailed as a huge benefit to the local economy by business leaders.

Tomorrow’s store opening marks the end of a five-year process since plans to build on the former British American Tobacco (BAT) site in Millbrook were first lodged with the city council.

The warehouse in Regent Park Road will be the American retailer’s 24th store in the UK. It will create 176 jobs, which the firm says have been largely filled by local people, be open seven days a week and sell 3,600 different lines.

It has been built on the 10-acre site of the former BAT cigarette manufacturing factory, which shut down in 2007.

Costco, which was founded in the USA in 1983, is a members’ only wholesale store selling a wide variety of goods including food, hardware and household and electronic items.

It currently has 626 stores around the world.

Costco’s UK managing director Steve Pappas said: “It’s been a long time coming. It was a long planning process but Southampton is one of the major cities which we have wanted to open a store in since we first came to the UK in 1993. We are excited. We have hired 176 people to staff the store. It’s very exciting for us and it’s making good use of a property that was not being used by BAT and it should be good for the community.”

Jimmy Chestnutt, chief executive of Hampshire’s Chamber of Commerce, said: “This store is Costco’s first warehouse club on the south coast.

“Consequently it will draw in new business visitors and trade from a very widespread area which can only be a good thing.

“Our business members are keen to take advantage of the benefits Costco can provide to the small business, especially in these continuing difficult times.”

Source : James Franklin – Daily Echo

02 May 2013
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