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    Scotland sees number of convenience stores increase

    General view of Princes Street as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, Edinburgh, Scotland, Britain, March 31, 2020. REUTERS/Russell Cheyne

    Scotland has seen convenience store numbers increase slightly to 5,025 across the country according to a new report from Scottish Grocers Federation.

    In 2020 Scottish retailers invested £62 million in their businesses, with in-store chillers seeing the highest level of investment and jobs rising to 47,000 – an increase of 3,000 from 2019.

    The Scottish Local Shop Report – produced in partnership with ASC – contains a comprehensive range of statistics on the scope and scale of the industry.

    The report shows that the old stereotype of the hard working retailer is absolutely true: 14% of retailers work for 70 hours per week, 18% take no holidays and the average store is open for 14 hours per week.

    Over the course of the pandemic, most stores have seen an increase in sales and an increase in basket spend.

    Convenience stores are now providing 600,000 home deliveries a week in their communities and 85% of independent c-store retailers in Scotland are regularly engaged in community activities.

    SGF chief executive Pete Cheema OBE said: “The Scottish Local Shop Report gives us the hard numbers we need to show clearly how important the convenience sector is to the national economy, the local economy and to our communities.

    “Retailers continue to invest massively in their businesses and this shows how determined they are to drive up standards.

    “The effort retailers have put into expanding home deliveries is a tribute to their willingness to support vulnerable customers and to adapt to the impact of the pandemic.”

    The Report is being distributed to MSPs and all Scottish MPs.

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