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Issa Bros considering adding nail bars and salons to Asda offering

The supermarket could potentially reduce its grocery offering by a quarter in order to make room for its new offerings

Mohsin and Zuber, the new owners of Asda, are reportedly considering adding nail bars, salons and cafes to the supermarkets offering while reducing grocery floor space.

According to The Sunday Times, the Issa Brothers are considering reducing the grocery floor space in stores by up to a quarter in order to make room to diversify its offering.

The news comes a month after it was revealed that the new owners were also reportedly considering spinning off George, the fashion label developed by George Davies, in an attempt to cut costs.

Industry sources told the Times that the Issa brothers and TDR Capital believe the brand is outside of their area of expertise.

While selling the brand outright could help to reduce the group’s debt, licensing George or introducing more fashion partnerships would utilise the supermarkets’ floor space.

Despite George’s online presence contributing to a combined net rise in sales of 76% at Asda.com and George.com in Q4 2020, its new owners have already set upon a path of partnerships.

Accessorize, Claire’s Accessories, and MusicMagpie have all recently been added to Asda’s larger stores, with interest in Caffè Nero also reportedly muted.

Asda also recently announced it was to support the increasing number of customers who are choosing to shop online, adding that it intends to expand its “in store pick” model by creating 4,500 new roles in store-based online operations across the country.

The business stated it will enter formal consultations with around 5,000 colleagues potentially impacted by the proposals out of a total workforce of 145,000.

As part of the restructuring, Asda said it has proposed the closure of the Dartford and Heston home shopping centres, impacting 800 colleagues.

Additionally, the supermarket revealed it has proposed the realignment of some store-level management roles, with deputy store manager and section leader roles replaced by two new roles – operations manager and online trading manager.

These proposals would reportedly impact roughly 1,100 colleagues and if enacted would see an overall increase in headcount in store-level management roles across the business.

Retail Sector has contacted Asda for comment.

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