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Retailing - 2003
B&Q is to create 100 new jobs with the relocation of its existing Doncaster distribution centre to a new purpose-built centre at the Redhouse Interchange at Woodlands.
Asda has won permission to expand its store in Dumbarton, with the creation of 100 jobs.
Wilkinson is to open a store in Workington with the creation of 80 jobs, one of 20 new outlets planned by the company over the next 12 months.
Neck & Neck of Spain is planning to open ten franchised childrenswear shops in the UK, having recently opened its first at Bluewater.
Carphone Warehouse is planning to expand its chain of 500 mobile phone stores with 100 new outlets in 2004.
Athlete's Foot of the US is planning to open 25 footwear stores in the UK over the next five years, having just opened its first in Llandudno.
Tesco has secured an option on Fuller Smith & Turner's interests in the Master Brewer Hotel site at Hillingdon, West London, and is expected to seek planning permission for a new store.
Tesco is seeking permission to build a Tesco Extra hypermarket on the site of its existing store in Llansamlet, Swansea, with the creation of 200 jobs.
Carrick Council is to consider proposals from Clavell for the construction of a department store and up to 35 shops in Truro by 2008.
Charnwood Borough Council is considering plans from Charles Street Buildings for the development of a £7m retail park at the Co-op site in Thurmaston, Leicester.
Morrisons has announced a £3bn agreed takeover offer for Safeway, which will create a nationwide chain of 552 supermarkets and lead to the closure of Safeway's head office in Hayes with the loss of about 1,200 jobs.
Julian Graves, the chain of 200 snack stores, has been acquired by Baugur of Iceland for £14m, and there are plans to expand the chain by about 50%.
Courts is considering plans to open up to 50 new furniture superstores, and is also piloting a new format for its 32 high street outlets.
Maplin is looking to expand its chain of 81 electronics stores to more than 200, with 15 sites due to open next year.
Londis, the convenience store chain owned by 1,956 individual store owners, has received a £40m takeover approach from Musgrave of Ireland.
Dixons Group has sold its Codic International European property development business to a group of Belgian investors for £23m.
Westfield has submitted proposals for the £150m transformation of Bury town centre, including a new department store, shops, a cinema and additional car parking.
Ikea has won permission to build a 300,000 sq ft furniture store in Edmonton, north London, by the end of 2004, with the creation of up to 500 jobs.
Pets at Home is to invest £55m in the development of up to 200 smaller neighbourhood stores, and will open between 30 and 50 sites a year.
Ciro Citterio's administrators have agreed a rescue deal with the company's directors, securing the future of more than 60 of its 100 menswear shops.
Compass has acquired Millies Cookies, the Bury-based operator of 100 cookie outlets, for £24m.
Cult Clothing of Cheltenham has secured a £2m finance package to fund the expansion of its nationwide chain of clothing stores.
Fads, the chain of 53 DIY stores with 345 staff, is to be bought out of insolvency by an investment shell company created by its administrator.
B&Q has submitted plans to Bassetlaw District Council to build a £65m distribution centre in Worksop.
Carpetright is to open carpet concessions in 12 Allders department stores this year, and a further 17 next year.
Topps Tiles is planning to expand its chain of 196 tile shops to 350 by opening 25 new sites a year.
Lush is planning to expand its chain of 51 handmade cosmetics stores to 100 by opening up to 20 new sites a year, and is also looking to expand into continental Europe.
New Look, the fashion retailer, is to set up a new 10,000 sq ft headquarters above its flagship store on London's Oxford Street.
Madisons has sold its chain of 27 coffee bars to Out of Town Group for an initial £2.2m, in order to focus on its Richoux restaurant format.
Topps Tiles is to open a new £7.2m tile distribution centre at Grove Park in Leicestershire by March, with the creation of up to 15 jobs.
Benjys is planning to create 1,000 new jobs by expanding its sandwich store and mobile delivery network over the next two years.
Cherwell District Council is in talks with developers about plans to build new shops, a library and a cinema in Bicester town centre.
J&J Haslett, the Northern Ireland-based wholesaler with 470 staff, is to undergo a management buy-out from BWG.
TJ Hughes is planning to expand its chain of discount department stores from 37 to 50 over the next three years.
Tchibo of Germany is to start expanding its chain of value merchandise and coffee shops in the UK, and hopes to reach 500 sites eventually.
Tesco is planning to build two new supermarkets at Croxteth and Litherland on Merseyside, with the creation of almost 1,000 jobs.
Tesco is to sell its 121 Supercigs and Supernews retail outlets to Rippleglen, while Rippleglen is planning to relocate its own Birmingham headquarters and warehouse to the Saltley Business Park.
Jaeger is planning to open six fashion stores in the current financial year, taking the UK total to 58, while expansion abroad will focus on India, China and Japan.
Asda has won permission to build a food distribution centre in Didcot, with the creation of about 500 jobs.
Somerfield and TM Retail are considering plans to expand their joint Somerfield Martin's convenience store format to 200 TM sites.
Adminstore is to spend £1.5m refurbishing up to six convenience stores in London over the next 12 months.
Inditex is planning to expand its chain of Zara fashion stores in the UK from 24 to 100, and will also expand in Italy, France and Germany.
Bhs is planning to refurbish between 15 and 20 department stores over the next year.
East is planning to expand its chain of fashion stores from 45 to about 90 over the next three years.
Oasis Stores, the fashion retailer, has been acquired by Baugur of Iceland for £152m.
JJB Sports is planning to sell its TJ Hughes chain of 37 discount department stores to a management buy-out for £56m.
Belfast City Council is to consider plans from Brunswick Sirocco for a £85m retail development on a 16-acre site formerly occupied by Howden Sirocco on the east bank of the Lagan.
Ikea has won permission to extend its furniture store in Warrington, with the creation of 100 jobs.
Tesco has announced the acquisition of Kipa, the Turkish chain of five hypermarkets, in a £75m deal.
RHM has sold the Three Cooks chain of 250 bakery outlets to Cooks for undisclosed terms.
Printing.com is planning to expand its chain of franchised high-street printing outlets from 60 to 175 over the next two years.
O'Briens of Ireland is planning to develop a chain of up to 500 sandwich bars across the UK, and will start by targeting London and the South East.
Carphone Warehouse is to recruit a further 230 sales staff this year, as part of its ongoing store opening programme.
Air Miles is to open about 12 high-street travel shops in the south-east over the next few years, and has also announced plans to rename itself as The Air Miles Travel Company.
Morrisons is recruiting 350 staff for a new store due to open in Hartlepool in spring 2004.
Kingfisher has announced plans to launch a chain of 50 mini-warehouse stores under its B&Q brand, with the creation of 1,500 jobs.
John Lewis is planning to expand its chain of 26 department stores with at least five new sites between 2008 and 2012.
Basilico is planning to expand its chain of four upmarket pizza delivery stores to 150 over the next five years, and a new franchising operation will start by focusing on the London area.
Electra Partners has supported a management buy-out at Bellevue, the Scottish cash and carry chain with £40m turnover, from BWG for undisclosed terms.
Games Workshop is seeking partners to expand its fantasy games retailing business into Japan, and is currently setting up a new £6m manufacturing operation in Memphis in the US.
Blacks Leisure is to step up its expansion programme by opening 20 stores this financial year and a further 30 next year.
Next is to create 150 new jobs with the opening of a new larger fashion store in Birstall at the end of November.
Dune is planning to expand its chain of 30 shoe stores to 60 over the next five years, and is seeking a flagship store in central London.
Asda is planning to recruit up to 10,000 permanent employees to cover during holiday periods throughout the year, in order to reduce the cost of re-hiring and training temporary staff.
Planet Organic is planning to open three more organic food stores in London over the next two years.
Highland Council is to consider plans from Inverness Estates for the development of a £30m retail park on the outskirts of Inverness.
John Lewis has confirmed plans to set up a department store at Liverpool's £750m Paradise Street redevelopment, relocating up to 600 jobs from its existing Church Street store in 2008.
Spark Response is creating 40 new jobs at its call centre in Gateshead, including vacancies for managers, sales advisers and warehouse staff.
ScS Upholstery is planning to open a further six furniture stores over the next 12 months.
Johnson Service has acquired 38 dry cleaning branches in southern England from Brooks Service for £1.9m.
Fat Face, the operator of 71 leisure clothing stores, is considering plans for a £50m flotation and expects to open 18 new stores this financial year.
Matalan is considering plans to open separate homeware stores and is seeking suitable town centre locations in the south.
D2 is looking to expand its chain of 91 fashion stores with nine new outlets over the next 12 months.
Toyworld is planning to expand its chain of 20 toy stores with eight new outlets next year, including a megastore in Leeds.
Maskreys is setting up a new £2m warehouse for its retail interiors business at Wentloog Industrial Park in Cardiff, with the creation of 14 jobs.
Poundzone, the chain of 16 discount stores with 200 staff, has been acquired by Manchester-based homeware importer RSW Group.
Dunelm Mill is to open a new textiles store at St Margaret's Retail Park in Swindon in December, with the creation of 100 jobs.
Dabs.com, the Bolton-based online retailer of electronic goods, is considering plans to open five stores following a trial at Liverpool airport.
Bargain Booze is planning to expand its chain of 500 off-licence franchises by recruiting at least 75 new franchises a year over the next two years.
Bewise, the chain of clothing stores, has been acquired by QS Group of Brighton for undisclosed terms, creating a combined group with 372 stores.
B&Q has awarded a contract to Simons Construction to build up to seven new DIY stores a year.
Tesco has announced plans to build a £7.8m superstore in Workington by 2007, with the creation of 150 new jobs.
Dixons is planning to set up a chain of up to 130 xL electrical superstores, which are about four times larger than its traditional shops.
TM Lewin is to start expanding its chain of clothing stores outside London for the first time, with the first opening in Manchester in November.
Ottakar's is planning to expand its chain of 117 bookstores to 300 over the next ten years.
Krispy Kreme of the US is planning to open 25 doughnut outlets in the UK and Ireland over the next five years, with the first few sites in London.
Quiz Clothing, the Glasgow-based operator of about 40 fashion stores, is planning to open more stores in England, including a new site in Birmingham's Bullring this month.
Aberdeenshire Council has approved plans from Bett Properties for the development of a £5m retail complex in Fraserburgh, which will create up to 100 jobs.
Sainsbury is acquiring five stores in New Hampshire and Vermont from GU Markets for undisclosed terms, in order to expand its US-based Shaw's Supermarkets chain.
Morrisons is looking to create up to 700 jobs in Wirral by building two new stores in Ellesmere Port and New Brighton.
Storey Carpets is planning to open up to 10 new stores in the north of England by the end of next year, taking the total to 43.
Asda is to recruit 50 extra staff for its store in Shipley, following a £5.2m refurbishment.
HMV Media is planning to open at least nine more Waterstone's book shops by the end of next year.
Ethel Austin is to open discount clothing outlets at 20 Co-op stores across the country next year, and a further 20 stand-alone stores will open before the end of this year.
Darlington Borough Council has approved plans from St Martins Property Group for the development of a £45m shopping complex in the town centre.
Caffe Nero is planning to expand its chain of 131 coffee bars to 150 by January 2004 and to 300 within five years.
Isle of Wight Council is to consider plans from Halladale for the development of a £7.5m three-storey retail development on the site of Newport Bus Station.
Stationery Box is planning to expand its chain of 130 stationery stores with new outlets in Scotland.
Piper Private Equity is planning to support the expansion of small retailers and leisure companies with a £20m investment fund.
Build-a-Bear Workshop of the US is planning to open a nationwide chain of toy shops, having awarded its UK franchise to Amsbra.
Dixons is seeking suitable locations to open small-format PC World stores, following a recent trial in Lincolnshire.
Confetti is to open its first wedding gift store outside London in Leeds in October, and a nationwide chain could follow.
WH Smith is to sell its chain of 180 airport stores in the US to Hudson Group for £41m, while its 280 US hotel stores are being sold to management for £8m.
Next has announced plans to extend many of its existing clothing stores and open at least four stores of more than 20,000 sq ft over the next six months.
Mills Group has acquired Morgam News, the West Midlands-based operator of 27 convenience stores, taking its total chain to 84 outlets.
Sheffield City Council has approved plans for the St Paul's Place phase of the £130m Heart of the City project, including shops, restaurants, cafes, apartments and offices.
Kingfisher has sold Nomi, the Polish DIY retailer with 39 stores, to Enterprise Investors for £7m.
Maldon District Council is to consider plans from Dartmouth Park Estates for the development of a £10m retail park on the edge of the town centre.
Marks & Spencer is to invest £3.6m in the expansion of its store in Basingstoke town centre.
Segafredo Zanetti Espresso of Switzerland is planning to open 100 coffee shops in the UK, starting with sites in London and Leeds.
Kingfisher is planning to expand its global network of DIY sourcing offices over the next few years, in order to improve the management of its B&Q supply chain.
Box 2 is planning to open a chain of 20 franchised plus-size fashion shops, with the first opening in Wimbledon before the end of the year.
Penny Plain is planning a £2m investment in the expansion of its chain of seven fashion stores to 20 over the next three years.
Silentnight, the bed manufacturer, is to return to private ownership following a £72m takeover offer from its founding family.
Wilkinson is to open a household goods store in Ellesmere Port in early 2004, with the creation of 90 jobs.
Asda has announced plans to build a store at the Chapel Street development in Rugby, with the creation of 350 jobs.
City Centre is planning to open up to five new restaurants this year, and a further 15-20 next year.
Saks is planning to open a further 15 beauty salons across the country by the end of the year, and the head office in Darlington will be expanded with the creation of a number of new jobs.
Makro is planning to build a cash and carry warehouse in Londonderry with the creation of 250 jobs.
King Sturge is seeking an additional eight sites in London for the expansion of Fresh Italy, the fast-food operator that specialises in pasta and salads.
Costcutter is planning to expand its chain of 35 company-owned convenience stores, and is seeking locations of less than 3,000 sq ft.
Dreams is to accelerate the expansion of its chain of 83 bed shops, and expects to reach 100 by the end of the year.
ClientLogic is creating up to 125 jobs at its call centre in Exeter to handle the expected seasonal rise in demand for the John Lewis Direct home shopping service.
Marks & Spencer has submitted proposals to Westminster City Council for the £300m redevelopment of its London headquarters, in order to relocate to Paddington Basin.
Powerhouse, the electrical retailer, has been bought out of administration by Pacific Retail Group of New Zealand, and PRG expects to secure 2,000 jobs and open about 50 new outlets.
Vono Beds is to set up a new bed showroom at the former Yarnolds curtain factory in Wolverhampton next year, with the creation of scores of jobs.
Yo Sushi is to undergo a £6.5m management buy-out backed by Primary Capital, and its chain of 15 UK restaurants will be doubled.
Birthdays, the greetings card retailer with 500 stores and 3,500 staff, has been acquired by West Coast Capital from its venture capital owners for undisclosed terms.
Sainsbury Developments is seeking permission to build a 215,000 sq ft shopping centre at the Shippams site in Chichester, including a department store and smaller units.
Home Entertainment is planning to double its chain of 210 Choices Video stores over the next few years.
B&M is to invest about £3m opening up to seven discount stores in Greater Manchester over the next few years, and two will open this year with the creation of 100 jobs.
Wolverhampton Council has unveiled proposals to build a £150m shopping and leisure complex in the city centre by 2008, and further details will be announced when a development partner has been found.
Matalan is to open a household goods superstore at Greenbridge in Swindon next spring, with the creation of 100 jobs.
Tesco is starting to recruit 400 staff for a new supermarket due to open in Wath-upon-Dearne in November.
Morrisons has won planning permission to build a new head office for 500 staff at Thornbury in Bradford, and more than 200 jobs will be transferred from Wakefield.
Harrods is considering plans to build a £5m store at the Balnagown estate near Inverness, as well as a theme park and holiday village.
Molton Brown has raised £28m from Bridgepoint Capital to expand its chain of upmarket cosmetics stores into the US and continental Europe.
SoundControl is to open its first musical instruments store in London in October, and sites in Liverpool and Southampton are expected to follow.
Viyella is to relocate its IT, accounts and warehousing from Jaeger in King's Lynn to its North Yorkshire base in November, with the loss of about 50 jobs.
Matalan has announced plans to open three clothing and homewares stores in Northern Ireland this year with the creation of 200 jobs, including sites in Belfast, Craigavon and Portadown.
Marks & Spencer is said to be planning to develop up to three new stores in London, including sites in White City, Piccadilly Circus and Knightsbridge.
Londis is planning to open up to 100 symbol stores this year, to add to the existing 2,300.
Harvey Nichols is planning to open five more boutique-style shops over the next five years, and is seeking suitable sites in cities such as Cardiff, Newcastle and Bristol.
Ask Central is to open three burger restaurants in the London area under the Jo Shmo brand, and an expansion programme will be devised if the trial is successful.
ISIS Equity Partners has supported a £20m management buy-out at Americana, the Manchester-based fashion company with about 250 staff.
Safeway is considering plans to build a new supermarket at Ellon near Aberdeen, with the creation of 90 new jobs and the transfer of staff from its existing site.
Lloydspharmacy has acquired Graeme Pharmacy, the chain of eight Scottish pharmacies with 44 staff, for undisclosed terms.
Birse has won a £11m contract to build a new headquarters for B&Q in Chandlers Ford, Hampshire.
Johnson Service has sold Connacht Court Group, the operator of Johnson's textile rental business in Ireland, to National Linen for £15m.
John Lewis has announced plans to create up to 700 jobs at a new £45m department store due to open at the Trafford Centre in Manchester by 2005.
B&Q is to create 300 new jobs in Northern Ireland over the next 12 months, including 250 at a new DIY store near Lisburn and 50 through an expansion at its Coleraine store.
Rayburn Trading Company, the distributor of health and beauty products, is to relocate to a 91,000 sq ft warehouse in North Road, Manchester, in 2004.
Makro is to open new cash and carry depots in Ipswich and Chester over the next few months, and additional openings are being planned.
Mulberry is to raise £3.5m in a share placing to fund the development of its luxury goods business.
Morrisons has announced plans to recruit 350 staff for a new store due to open in Kilmarnock in February.
Rhondda Cynon Taff Council has approved plans from Scarborough Developments for the £50m redevelopment of Pontypridd town centre, including a new shopping centre.
Carphone Warehouse is planning to create up to 400 jobs at 100 new stores this year, and a similar number of jobs at its call centres.
Trago Mills is to invest £5m in the development of a garden centre at its out-of-town shopping complex near Newton Abbot.
Zwemmer, the London-based arts bookseller, has been bought out of administration by Shipley.
Reid Furniture is planning to spend up to £10m opening new stores in the north west of England and refurbishing existing stores over the next 18 months.
Blacks Leisure is to open a further 15 stores this year, including a mixture of all its brands.
Hamleys is expected to open up to 100 Bear Factory stores around the world over the next five years, following its acquisition by Baugur.
Tesco is to create 1,400 jobs from the expansion of its Tesco Express convenience stores, 2,000 jobs at existing stores, 50 jobs in its new telecoms division and 350 jobs at a new service centre in India.
Camp Hopson is planning a £8m refurbishment of its department store in Newbury, starting in autumn 2004.
Heighley Gate is to recruit a further 50 staff at its garden centre in Morpeth once a £7m expansion project is complete.
Waitrose is linking up with a consortium of eight Cornish farmers to build a £25m supermarket offering local produce near Penryn, and similar projects could be launched throughout the country.
Kingfisher has sold Dubois Materiaux, its French builders merchant subsidiary, to Saint-Gobain for £69m.
JJB Sports has identified 19 potential sites to open sports superstores, and five more health clubs will open this year.
Heal's is looking to open upmarket furniture stores in up to 12 cities, with its first regional outlet opening in Manchester in July.
Gifts4All is to open its first standalone gift store at the Bullring in Birmingham this autumn, and more sites will follow.
Time is planning to expand its chain of 140 high street Computer World stores to 250 over the next two years.
Flight Centre of Australia is planning to expand its chain of 60 discount airfare stores in the UK with new outlets in Scotland.
HMV is planning to expand its chain of 166 music stores with 15 new outlets this year, with the focus on medium-size towns.
Blacks Leisure has acquired Just Add Water, the retailer of surf and skateboard equipment with 10 stores, for £4.3m.
Tesco has announced proposals to build a new store in Clacton, as part of the multi-million pound Brook Park development.
Fushi is planning to open about 30 health and beauty stores over the next five years, having just opened a flagship store in London.
Lumination has acquired Litecraft, the operator of 43 lighting shops, for undisclosed terms.
Osim of Singapore is planning to open 50 health shops in the UK over the next five years, with its first standalone outlet at Bluewater.
Country Baskets is opening a trade-only warehouse for its floral decoration business in Stourbridge, with the creation of 50 jobs.
Tesco is seeking outline planning permission from Mansfield District Council to build a supermarket in Chesterfield Road South, which would create 270 jobs.
Co-operative Group has acquired the Balfour chain of 76 convenience stores and 35 newsagents from 3i for £30m, and will spend £16m converting them to its Welcome format.
Merchant Retail is to invest £3.7m in the expansion of its chain of 80 Perfume Shops this year, with the creation of about 100 jobs.
Tesco is seeking permission to extend its Allerton superstore in Liverpool with the creation of up to 60 jobs.
Marks & Spencer is recruiting an extra 50 staff for its revamped Culverhouse Cross store in Cardiff, which is due for completion in November.
Dixons is planning to open a further ten computer superstores over the next year with the creation of 2,200 jobs, including its first store in Sweden.
Penny Plain is to open a further four fashion stores in 2004, and is also expanding its mail-order and online retailing operations.
Matalan is to open a new discount store at Newport on the Isle of Wight next year with the creation of 100 jobs, while a new store will open in Hull this August.
Morrisons has won permission from South Derbyshire District Council to build a new supermarket in Swadlincote, with the creation of 350 jobs.
Gadget Shop is planning to expand its chain of 55 gift shops to 90 over the coming months, and expects to recruit a further 500 sales staff by Christmas.
Holland & Barrett is planning to expand its chain of 472 health food shops to at least 550, while its recently-acquired GNC chain will increase from 50 to 150 by 2007.
Select is planning to expand its chain of 217 womenswear shops with up to 30 new outlets a year.
Halfords, the bicycle and car parts retailer, is considering plans to open a further 70 out-of-town stores and 90 high-street stores.
Ikea has launched a recruitment drive for 380 staff for its new furniture store in Cardiff, which is due to open in November.
Internet Cameras Direct is planning to expand the workforce at its Marsden-based online retailing business from 60 to 200 over the next five years.
Debenhams is to set up a department store in Newry, as part of the £25m redevelopment of The Quays shopping centre.
Hamleys, the London-based toy shop, has agreed a £47m management buy-out backed by Baugur and financed by Royal Bank of Scotland.
Boots is considering plans to open health and beauty stores in the US, and discussions are taking place with a number of potential partners.
Majestic Wine is planning to expand its chain of off-licences from 107 to 175.
MFI is planning to open 25 high street furniture stores, while a further 50 superstores will be revamped.
Brintons is to open its first high street carpet store in Kingston-upon-Thames later this year.
Reiss is to invest £4m opening eight fashion stores this year, to add to the existing 26.
Justice is planning to expand its chain of four upmarket jewellery stores into a 100-strong nationwide chain.
Waitrose is to spend £130m refurbishing and extending its chain of supermarkets, including a new corporate identity, new checkout systems and the opening of about nine new stores next year.
Jessops is planning to expand its chain of photography shops into continental Europe, while its UK expansion programme will include about 20 new shops a year.
The Watch Repair Centre is to expand its chain of 12 jewellery shops with 10 new outlets over the next two years, with the creation of up to 30 jobs.
St James Security is creating several hundred jobs throughout the country, having won a contract to provide security guards at 202 Kwik Save stores.
Arcadia and Bhs are to replace the Co-op at the Fairhill Shopping Centre in Ballymena, as part of a £20m redevelopment of the site that will create 200 jobs.
WildDay.com is planning to expand its online leisure and clothing retail business in Nairn with the creation of up to 27 jobs.
Nottingham City Council is to consider plans from Monk Estates for the £70m redevelopment of Trinity Square, Birkbeck House and British Land House, in order to create ten retail units and student flats.
Tesco is planning to acquire the C Two-Network chain of 78 convenience stores in Japan for £139m, and aims to open up to 20 new stores a year.
Asda is planning to open two standalone clothing stores in Leeds and Croydon by September, which could lead to the development of a nationwide chain dedicated to its George fashion range.
Marks & Spencer is considering plans to open Simply Food stores at the Moto chain of motorway service stations, starting with a trial at Toddington on the M1 this summer.
Primark is looking to expand its chain of 116 value clothing stores, including new megastores in large cities.
Napiers Herbal Health Care is planning to open four new outlets a year, taking its chain of herbal medicine clinics to 30.
Sofa Sofa is looking to open a number of out-of-town furniture stores in the London area.
Boots is to invest £238m in new stores and computer systems this year, but 500 jobs are being shed in the IT and human resources departments at its Nottingham head office.
Satchi is planning to expand its health and beauty chain in the north-east with new outlets in Newcastle, Durham and Leeds over the next 12 months, and the workforce will increase from 17 to 70.
Asda is seeking permission for the £10m expansion of its Gloucester store, with the creation of 100 jobs.
Highland Council is considering plans from Macdonald Estates for the development of a £20m DIY and garden centre at the former Inverness Precast Concrete site in Inverness, which could create up to 250 jobs.
Redcats is to create 200 new jobs at its home-shopping call centre in Bradford.
Sainsbury is planning to open 100 convenience stores on Shell garage forecourts over the next three years, with the creation of up to 2,000 jobs.
Fine Art Auction Group has acquired the Bristol Auction Rooms, as part of a strategy to develop a national network of regional salerooms.
Auntie Anne's of the US is planning to set up a nationwide chain of pretzel stores in UK shopping centres, having opened a pilot site at Victoria Station in London.
Ethel Austin is planning to open eight value clothing stores over the next six months, taking its chain to 250.
Music Zone is to develop a kiosk business under the name of Music Zone Bug, in order to sell music in limited space locations such as stations and airports.
Staples is planning to expand its chain of office supplies stores from 93 to 250 over the next few years, and new buying and merchandising units are to be established in the UK.
New Look is to acquire the remaining 49% stake in NewMim, the French fashion retailer with 171 stores, for up to £30m.
Asda is planning a £4m expansion at its supermarket in Stowmarket, with the creation of 70 jobs.
Plymouth City Council is to consider proposals from Colesbourne Asset Management for a £40m retail development on the west side of the city centre.
Peacocks is planning to open 60 new discount clothing stores by next March, with the creation of more than 1,000 jobs.
GUS is to sell its home shopping operations in the UK, Ireland and Sweden, as well as its Reality logistics and customer care business, to March UK for £590m.
Sainsbury has won permission to build a supermarket in Otley by next spring, with the creation of 150 jobs.
Bonmarche is planning to open up to eight fashion stores in Northern Ireland this year, and property consultancy Lisney is seeking suitable sites.
Hammicks has sold its legal division to John Smith & Son of Glasgow, including a subscription business and specialist bookshops in London, Manchester and Bristol.
Leapingsalmon has sold its four railway station kiosks in London to the Unilever Bestfoods' Rocket division, and will now seek tie-ups with non-food retailers.
Sainsbury is to set up a convenience stores division at its London head office, in order to fund the expansion of its chain of 57 Local stores.
Athlete's Foot of the US is planning to open about 20 athletic footwear stores in the UK, including company-owned and franchised outlets.
Gelert, the supplier of outdoor equipment, is to invest £4.5m in a new warehouse and office facility in Porthmadog, with the creation of up to 70 new jobs over the next five years.
Matalan is recruiting 100 staff for a new discount store due to open in Harlow in June.
Cardfair has acquired Card Warehouse in a £45m deal, creating a new company called Greeting Card Group with more than 400 shops.
B&Q is planning to build a DIY superstore at the proposed Junction retail complex in Oldbury, West Midlands, with the creation of 250 jobs.
Newcastle City Council is to receive plans from Closegate Hotel Developments for a £6m retail and leisure development above the city's Haymarket Metro station, including new bars, shops and the creation of up to 200 jobs.
Wilkinson Hardware Stores is planning to expand its chain of shops from 220 to 300 over the next three years, with the creation of 7,000 jobs.
HMV Media is to restart an expansion programme for its chain of Waterstone's book shops this year, starting with a new store at Manchester's Trafford Centre in July.
Harlow Council is to consider plans from Stannifer for the 250,000 sq ft expansion of the Harvey Centre, including a new department store.
Ocado is planning to expand its Waitrose online delivery service with new satellite distribution centres in Milton Keynes and south east London.
Viridian and 3i have sold the ShopElectric chain of 35 electrical stores in Northern Ireland to Northern Retail.
Asda has announced plans to invest in its distribution network, including the introduction of cardboard and plastic recycling centres and the creation of 1,200 jobs in Wakefield, Lutterworth, Falkirk, Grangemouth and Wigan.
Kingdom of Leather, the operator of 15 furniture stores, has been acquired by Natuzzi of Italy for about £30m.
Selfridges, the department store group, has accepted a £600m takeover bid from the Wittington Canada private holding company.
Tesco has submitted plans to build a superstore on the site of the Clowes Printworks in Beccles, Suffolk.
Johnson Service has acquired Jeeves of Belgravia, the London-based operator of 12 dry cleaning shops, from Minit Holdings for about £3m.
Timpson has acquired Minit UK, the owner of Supasnaps, Sketchley cleaners and Mister Minit, taking its total chain to more than 1,000 outlets.
Spar is planning to expand its 2,500-strong symbol network by recruiting a further 500 independent outlets over the next year.
Wooden Tots is planning to open luxury toy shops in Manchester and Edinburgh.
Harvey Nichols has started recruiting 500 staff for a new £25m store due to open in Manchester by the end of the summer.
Morrisons has submitted plans for a new superstore at Speke on Merseyside, with the creation of up to 500 jobs.
Benjys is to invest £4m in the expansion of its chain of sandwich outlets, and aims to open 15 new branches and create 500 jobs by March 2004.
Marks & Spencer is to set up a new customer services operation at the Chester Business Park in the autumn, with the creation of 77 jobs.
Greggs is to create more than 100 jobs in Yorkshire this year, including seven new stores and the expansion of its main bakery in Leeds.
Mountain Warehouse is planning to expand its chain of 23 outdoor equipment stores in factory outlet centres with another two or three sites this year, and will also start opening high street stores.
Sportizus is planning to open 11 sports and celebrity memorabilia stores this year.
Tesco has submitted outline applications for new stores in Cradley Heath and West Bromwich, which could create 400 jobs.
Dunelm is to create 100 jobs at a new home furnishings superstore in Sunderland in July.
The Gretna Gateway designer shopping venue in Dumfries & Galloway is to create up to 100 new jobs, as part of a £8m expansion plan by owner Northridge Capital.
Next has announced plans to create more than 150 jobs at a new large-format fashion store at the Retail World shopping development on Tyneside in July.
Barbour, the waxed jacket manufacturer, is planning to expand its chain of five UK shops into a nationwide chain, and also has long-term plans to open a shop in every major city in the world.
Bertram Books is reviving plans to relocate its book wholesaling business from two sites in Norwich to a mothballed complex on the Broadland Business Park early next year.
Poundland is planning to open 30 more discount stores over the next three years, and its first Scottish store will open in East Kilbride.
Office World is planning to expand its chain of 56 UK stores with 30 new outlets, but its ten stores in Germany will close.
DFS Furniture is looking to expand its chain of 64 furniture stores to about 100, with three due to open by the end of summer.
Kingfisher is to sell Reno-Depot, its Canadian chain of 20 home improvement stores, to RONA for £155m.
North Wiltshire District Council has approved plans from Parkridge for the construction of a B&Q store, garden centre, builders' merchant and restaurant in Chippenham.
Big Food Group is to refurbish about 150 Iceland stores over the next 12 months, and most of the 760-strong chain will be converted to its new design within three years.
Bloomsbury Jewellery is seeking financial backing to open five new stores over the next two years.
M-XS is planning to expand its chain of four men's gifts shops to up to 50, and is seeking a new chief executive prepared to invest in the business.
Baxters, the food manufacturer, is to open two stores in Scottish tourist destinations this year.
Tesco is to relocate up to 200 jobs from its two depots in Milton Keynes to a new site in Daventry.
Pizza Hut is planning to open 75 new outlets this year, with the creation of 3,500 jobs.
Debenhams is planning to spend £430m opening nine new department stores and refurbishing others by spring 2005, with the creation of about 2,000 jobs.
Greggs has started work on the £2m expansion of its Birmingham headquarters, in order to support the expansion of its chain of bakery shops across the Midlands from 130 to 190 by 2008.
Brentwood Borough Council is to consider plans from Halladale for the £20m revamp of the Chapel High Shopping Centre and Becket House site.
Time Group is to invest £1m in the expansion of its computer wholesale operations in continental Europe, starting with an office in Toulon, France.
Moss Bros is to expand its menswear retailing business with 40 new Moss outlets and 12 new Gee outlets over the next three years.
Tesco is planning to create 11,000 jobs in the UK over the next 12 months as part of its ongoing expansion programme.
Subway is looking to open up to 40 sandwich restaurants across the North West, creating more than 350 jobs, and expects to reach 2,000 stores across the UK within 10 years.
Stylo has acquired Shelly's, the operator of 11 high street shoe shops, for £1.5m.
Sainsbury has announced plans to create 10,000 mostly part-time jobs in order to reduce check-out queues, but is also said to be considering 650 redundancies at its London head office.
B&Q has identified 100 suitable sites to open mini-Warehouse DIY stores, while its existing estate of 220 smaller stores will be modernised with the relocation of 60 sites and the expansion of 50.
Julian Graves has secured a £4.5m cash injection to fund the expansion of its chain of 185 snack stores, and 50 new sites are expected to open this year.
Dobbies Garden Centres is to set up a £5m Garden World in Ayr by March 2004, with the creation of 90 jobs.
Morrisons has submitted plans to build a distribution centre at the Latimer Park industrial estate near Kettering, which would create about 550 jobs.
Sainsbury and Tibbett & Britten are to relocate some of their warehouse operations from Corby to Waltham Cross in July, affecting up to 150 jobs.
BAA has sold its stakes in designer outlets in York, Ashford, Mansfield and Livingston to Mayfair Limited Partnership for £165m.
Chesterfield Borough Council is to consider plans from AWG Developments for the £20m transformation of a former Demaglass site, including a DIY warehouse complete with garden centre.
Comet, the electrical goods retailer, is planning to build a £72m distribution hub in Skelmersdale to service the North and Scotland.
Selfridges has confirmed that negotiations are taking place to open department stores on specific sites in Bristol, Leeds and Newcastle, as part of a strategy to open a chain of eight stores across the country.
Alexon has announced plans to open up to 200 additional fashion stores, with the Envy chain growing from 50 to 100 and Bay Trading from 38 to 180.
Bewise is acquiring eight former What Everyone Wants stores with the creation of up to 200 jobs, taking its chain of clothing and homewares stores to 178.
Woolworths is to create more than 250 jobs in Aberdeen in July, with the opening of a Big W store at the Boulevard retail park.
Specsavers is planning to open three new optician stores in Northern Ireland over the next 12 months, with the creation of 40 jobs.
Selfridges is in discussions to open a £35m store in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, which would create about 800 jobs.
Asda is to set up a £30m distribution centre in Skelmersdale by August, in order to distribute frozen and chilled food to stores across the north-west.
Chester City Council has approved plans from ING Real Estate for a £200m retail development around Northgate Street, including 60 new shops.
Viyella, the operator of 34 fashion stores, has been acquired by Harris Watson of Birmingham for undisclosed terms.
South Lanarkshire Council has approved plans from Glasgow-based Elandome for the £4m expansion of the New Cross shopping centre in Hamilton.
Cellar 5, the chain of 360 off-licences, has been bought out of receivership by Manchester-based property company Maryland Securities for undisclosed terms.
Dr Holiday is planning to expand its chain of 15 travel agencies with additional outlets across Scotland, and will then open up to 40 stores in England over the next few years.
Holland & Barrett has acquired Health & Diet Group from Royal Numico of the Netherlands for £7.5m, gaining 49 GNC health food stores in the UK.
Wyevale Garden Centres is seeking acquisitions to expand its chain of 124 garden centres, and has identified 200 independent businesses as potential targets.
Natural World is looking to expand its chain of 30 shops, having identified up to 90 potential locations.
Sainsbury is to invest £30m in training over the next three years, in order to improve product availability and cut queues.
Karrimor has bought 15 YHA Adventure Shops out of administration, in order to expand its outdoor equipment retailing business.
French Connection is planning to double its chain of 25 fashion stores in the US.
Ask Central is planning to expand its chain of 145 pizza and pasta outlets with up to 30 new sites a year.
Premier Direct is to create a further 150 sales jobs throughout the country over the next 12 months, in order to expand its Tyneside-based giftware business.
Jaeger, the fashion retailer, has been sold for the second time this year, this time to the founder of Honorbilt for a nominal sum.
Advent International has acquired a minority stake in ILVA, the Danish furniture retailer, for an estimated £90m, and the business will be expanded into Sweden and the UK.
Asda is looking to open up to 300 smaller stores on town high streets, following successful trials in Bodmin and Walthamstow.
TK Maxx is planning to open 30 discount fashion stores in the UK this year.
Lush is looking to expand its chain of 41 UK cosmetics stores with 20 new sites this year, and will also open in Japan and Spain.
Brown & Jackson is seeking permission to set up a £20m Poundstretcher headquarters and distribution centre in Huddersfield, with the creation of 400 new jobs and the relocation of 300 jobs from Leeds.
Flying Brands is seeking acquisitions to expand its home shopping business and to increase the use of its call and packing centres.
Arcadia is considering plans to open Top Shop fashion stores in Europe's leading cities.
Asda has announced plans to build a £20m store in Galashiels, with the creation of 360 jobs.
Moray Council is to consider plans from Macdonald Estates for the development of a £14m retail park on the site of the Elgin Auction Centre.
Yo! Sushi is in negotiations to sell a 30% stake in the business to an unnamed venture capitalist, in order to raise funds to double its chain of UK sushi restaurants and open its first franchised outlets overseas.
Nauticalia is planning to expand its chain of 12 nautical gift shops with eight new outlets over the next few years, and will also open its first franchises in continental Europe.
Thorntons, the confectionery retailer, is looking to open up to 40 franchised outlets, but the number of company-owned stores is expected to remain at 390.
Oil & Vinegar, the Dutch food retailer, is planning to open 90 stores in the UK over the next three years, mainly franchised outlets in shopping centres.
Claire's Accessories is considering plans to set up a chain of 150 Girl Heaven stores, and its first department store concessions will open in Debenhams.
Ponden Mill is planning to expand its chain of 120 soft furnishing stores with up to 30 new outlets a year.
Caffe Nero is to expand its chain of 111 coffee bars to 125 over the remaining few months of its financial year.
Greggs is to create 200 jobs in the south west and South Wales with eight new bakery shops and the expansion of its site in Treforest, which currently employs 400 people.
Tesco has announced plans to offer permanent jobs to 3,000 temporary staff and to recruit a further 3,000 for the Easter period.
Domino's Pizza is planning to expand its chain of 272 pizza outlets with 50 new sites this year.
Spark Response is creating 50 new jobs at its mail order call centre at Follingsby Park, Gateshead.
Speciality Retail Group is to expand its Autonomy womenswear shops onto the high street with two pilot stores in Bath and Guildford, and is also planning to redesign its Woodhouse menswear stores.
Mamas & Papas is planning to expand its chain of 17 nursery stores with 10 new outlets this year.
Sweet Factory is planning to open 30 confectionery outlets in the UK this year, and most will be mall kiosks.
KFC is planning to open 58 fast food restaurants this year, taking the total to more than 650.
Welcome Break is creating 80 jobs with the opening of a new motorway service station on the M54 in Shropshire next month.
Asda has announced a £360m expansion programme with the creation of 3,900 jobs this year, including 10 new stores and the addition of mezzanine floors in up to 40 existing stores.
Manchester City Council and Pillar Property have announced plans for the development of a £60m retail park on a 24-acre site in Cheetham Hill Road, and construction work will start in the summer.
Leeds City Council has approved plans from the Universities Superannuation Scheme for the development of the £150m Trinity Quarter shopping area in the city centre, including 70 retail outlets.
B&Q is to recruit 235 staff for a new DIY store due to open in Tunbridge Wells in May.
McArthur Glen, the developer of designer outlets, is to set up a new 7,300 sq ft head office at Seymour Mews House in London W1.
Birmingham Alliance is to assist 130 retailers find more than 8,000 staff for the opening of the £500m Bullring development in September, and a recruitment task force has been set up with Jobcentre Plus, Birmingham City Council and Pertemps.
Greggs is planning to expand its chain of 1,200 bakery stores with 500 new outlets over the next five years.
Somerfield and TM Retail are forming a joint venture to open six convenience stores under the Somerfield fascia.
Big Food Group is to shed up to 100 jobs at its recently-acquired Booker business in Wellingborough, in order to relocate a number of support functions to Deeside in North Wales.
Sedgefield Borough Council is considering plans from Mastercare Service & Distribution for the development of a distribution centre in Newton Aycliffe to serve Dixons and PC World, which could create 250 jobs.
Daisy & Tom has raised £2.6m to fund the expansion of its chain of children's stores.
SoftWide is planning to open up to 40 computer software shops in the UK this year, to add to its existing three London sites.
Gamestation is planning to open between 70 and 100 computer games shops this year, taking the total to more than 140.
BrightHouse is planning to open 20 electrical stores this year.
Faith Shoes is looking to expand its chain of 35 stores with 15 new sites this year.
Ferrari's Bakery is planning to open a further 12 shops across South Wales over the next 18 months, while the existing 41 outlets are being refurbished.
Dunelm is recruiting 90 staff for a new homewares store due to open in Stockton next month.
Durham Pine is to open 20 company-owned and franchised furniture stores this year with the creation of 140 jobs, and its name will be changed to DP Furniture.
Hennes & Mauritz of Sweden is planning to open up to 15 fashion stores a year in the UK.
Tesco is to spend £64m opening six new supermarkets in Ireland, with the creation of 1,500 jobs.
Moyses Stevens is to undergo a £3.5m management buy-out backed by Nemadi Advisors, and is planning to open 15 new flower shops across the country over the next three years.
Whittard of Chelsea is planning to open about six tea and coffee stores in the UK this year.
Balfour is aiming to expand its chain of convenience stores from 100 to 300 over the next two years, which would involve the acquisition of more than one group.
Stiles Harold Williams is seeking a further 50 sites in London to enable US-based Subway to open franchised sandwich outlets.
Brantano has acquired 28 footwear stores on retail parks from the receivers of Famous Brunswick Warehouse, and has also announced plans to open a further 10 stores this year.
Farmfoods is planning to expand its chain of 263 frozen food outlets, and is seeking suitable premises at hundreds of locations.
Kleeneze, the direct sales retailer, is to sell its main site in Hanham, Bristol, for £4m, in order to relocate to a dedicated distribution centre nearby.
Coats has sold its Jaeger and Viyella fashion brands to Riverhawk Investment for undisclosed terms, in order to focus on the production of industrial sewing thread.
Poundzone has acquired The Factory Group, the West Yorkshire-based operator of 42 Factory Shops and eight Cape County Furniture stores with 600 staff, in a multi-million pound deal.
Ma Potter has raised £4.5m of venture capital to expand its restaurant chain from 11 to 20 outlets, with the creation of 500 jobs.
Aldi, the German food retailer, is planning to build a distribution centre at Neston in Wirral with the creation of up 200 jobs.
Debenhams is planning to set up a department store in Wolverhampton, as part of the redevelopment of an eight-acre site near Bell Street.
McDonald's is to expand its chain of 1,231 UK fast food restaurants with 44 outlets this year.
Gilesports has acquired six sports shops in the north-east from Dixon Sports, taking its chain to 89 sites.
Gadget Shop is to relocate its headquarters from Hull to Scotland in April, with the creation of 25 jobs, and a number of possible sites are being considered near Glasgow airport.
Waitrose is recruiting 200 staff for a new store due to open at Portishead marina near Bristol in July.
Kingfisher has agreed to sell ProMarkt, the German electrical retailer, back to its founders for a nominal sum.
Topps Tiles is planning to open 24 tile shops this year, to add to the existing 180.
Cameron Toll has announced plans for the £37m refurbishment of the Cameron Toll Shopping Centre in Edinburgh.
Cellar 5's receivers have sold 59 Right Choice stores to a new company called A&S Stores for undisclosed terms, securing the future of 160 jobs.
Ottakar's is planning to expand its chain of 93 book stores to 100 this year.
Clinton Cards is planning to open 35 new greeting card shops this year, to add to the existing 699.
Ted Baker is to spend £1.6m relocating three of its fashion stores this year.
JJB Sports has signed contracts to open a further 18 sports stores this year.
Compass is planning to open up to 45 Harry Ramsden's fish shops this year, including about 30 franchises.
Matalan is planning to open a further 20 discount stores this year, and the computer systems in its supply chain will be updated with the help of Cap Gemini.
Jane Norman, the fashion retailer, is to undergo a £70m management buy-out backed by Graphite Capital.
GUS has acquired Nordic Info Group, the Scandinavian consumer information company, for £90m, in order to expand its Experian division.
Monsoon is planning to open 10 to 15 fashion stores in the UK over the next year and up to 30 overseas.
Domino's Pizza is looking to open up to 45 new outlets in the North-East and Yorkshire over the next few years, with the creation of more than 1,000 jobs.
Tesco has won permission to build a Tesco Extra superstore in Long Eaton town centre, with the creation of about 400 jobs.
Morrisons has launched a £2.5bn agreed bid for Safeway, creating a combined supermarkets group with 598 stores, but 1,200 Safeway jobs could be lost through the closure of its head office in Hayes.
Hobbs, the womenswear retailer, has undergone a £30m management buy-out backed by Barclays Private Equity, and there are plans to double the number of stores to 60 over the next five years.