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Waitrose invests £200m into new stores

Waitrose has confirmed it will “maintain the momentum” in its store roll-out plans after investing almost £200 million on new stores and refits in the first half of the year.

In an interim report, parent company John Lewis Partnership revealed its supermarket brand had invested £198.2 million, mainly on new stores, in the first six months of 2009.

Chairman Charlie Mayfield said: “We expect trading conditions for the remainder of 2009, and into 2010, to continue to be difficult, [however] we will continue to invest in existing and new shops and formats.”

Sales for the six months to 1 August were up 7.4 per cent to £2.18 billion. Operating profit was up 15.7 per cent to £121.1 million.