SandpiperCI, the Channel Islands’ retailer will be expanding its food retail activities into the United Kingdom.
The organisation, which was formed in 2007 when it bought what was then C.I. Traders, has reached agreement with Marks and Spencer Group plc to open M&S Food stores in Southwest England.
The deal will increase the size of SandpiperCI’s current retail operations, which have to date, been mostly based in the Channel Islands, with additional outlets in the Isle of Man and the British overseas territory of Gibraltar.
SandpiperCI can trace its history back with M&S for more than 50 years when a franchise agreement was signed in 1967. The arrangement was unique at that time and the relationship between the two organisations naturally developed into a very successful longstanding business partnership.
Recognising the success of SandpiperCI’s franchise arrangements with M&S, the Channel Islands’ based business began an expansion programme and introduced a portfolio of franchise brands covering food, clothing, and specialist products. Amongst others, the brands include: Morrisons, Iceland, Matalan, Costa Coffee, Burger King, Hotel Chocolat, Cardfactory and Sandpiper’s Apple Authorised Premium Reseller, iQ.
Commenting on the Marks and Spencer franchise agreement, SandpiperCI’s Executive Chairman, Tony O’Neill said: “We have worked closely with M&S over the last 15 years to build a strong and highly successful M&S franchise business in Jersey. Our M&S store teams consistently deliver service and standards of the highest order, and we are naturally delighted to have the opportunity to widen our partnership with Marks and Spencer Group plc by developing stores in the UK mainland.”
The expansion program into the UK is underway. Property teams are identifying prime retail sites in towns and cities across the southwest of England. An experienced Operations Director has been appointed to oversee the UK operation and the first M&S food stores are expected to be open and trading in the spring of next year (2023).