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    Tesco Reveals San Diego Plans

    Company names seven secured locations; reveals market insight.

    SAN DIEGO -- Tesco unveiled seven locations for San Diego-area Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market stores here yesterday, in addition to details of its research into the consumer market.

    The seven sites in the San Diego area have already been secured and are expected to open by Christmas, officials said. And additional locations are being researched. The secured San Diego-area locations include:

    -- Campo & Kenwood, Casa de Oro

    -- Catalina & Cannon, Point Loma

    -- East Vista & Vale Terrace, Vista

    -- East H & Tierra Del Ray, Chula Vista

    -- Lake Murray & Navajo, San Diego

    -- Main & Ammunition, Fallbrook

    -- Valley & Ash, Escondido

    This is the third announcement the company has made concerning its locations. Other cities where locations have been revealed include Las Vegas and Phoenix. In addition to these areas, the company will open Fresh & Easy stores throughout Southern California.

    "San Diego is filled with vibrant neighborhoods and residents who understand the value of nature's gifts, from stunning beaches to delicious fruits and vegetables," said Tim Mason, Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market CEO. "We think our stores' approach to bringing fresh, high-quality foods to the neighborhood will be a hit with San Diego consumers."

    At the announcement in the San Diego Gaslamp Marriott, Mason rejected being compared to a Trader Joe's -- another smaller gourmet food store ion the area -- and instead, said: "We want to appeal to the neighborhood in the same way as Starbucks," reported the North County Times.

    The Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market format is based on extensive customer research in local U.S. markets, along with the learnings from Tesco's Express format, which it operates more than 1,000 stores in seven countries. For the U.S. launch, Fresh & Easy researchers spent time in the homes of consumers looking at shopping and cooking patterns.

    "We literally went into their kitchens and looked in their refrigerators," said Mason. "Based on our research, we are confident our stores will be a hit in every neighborhood we open in."

    In addition, the company's research showed it could reach Hispanic consumers by offering a mix of authentic and national brand products that households use, together with low prices, quality meat and produce and a clean store environment, the company stated. In addition, Fresh & Easy stores will employ bilingual staff to assist Spanish-speaking customers, the Times reported.

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