Following a decision by the Jersey Competition Regulatory Authority (JCRA), the purchase by the John Lewis Partnership of five Channel Island supermarkets has been approved.
Three stores in Jersey and two in Guernsey, previously owned by Sandpiper plc, will be re-branded as Waitrose supermarkets early next year.
Waitrose is the first of any of the top five UK supermarket chains to be allowed to buy property in the Channel Islands.
A Waitrose spokesman told the Retail Gazette: “We are delighted to have received approval from the JCRA to open our shops in Jersey. We look forward to opening our shops in both Jersey and Guernsey in early 2011.”
The stores will provide 130,000 sq ft of extra retail space for the retailer, while all 480 current employees will be retained and 100 new jobs are expected to be created.
Marks & Spencer, Co-operative and Spar already have a presence on the islands but Waitrose is the largest grocer to set up its stall in the area.
Nick Bubb, Retail Analyst at Arden Partners, commented: “It’s a protected market with no competition, so Waitrose will do well there, but the five stores won’t have come cheap, the price was undisclosed.”