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Grocery retailer announces 550 job boost for Adelaide’s north

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Independent grocery retailer Drakes Supermarkets has received council planning consent to build a new $80 million distribution centre in Adelaide’s north, which it says will create up to 250 ongoing jobs.

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The centre, to be located on a 17-hectare site in Edinburgh North, will create 300 jobs during construction and an additional 120 to 250 ongoing full-time positions once the centre is open in June next year.

Drakes Supermarkets confirmed the new facility today, after its contracted wholesaler Metcash yesterday revealed Drakes would move to self-supply in South Australia at the end of the parties’ current agreement in June 2019.

Metcash shares, which had been trading at around a five-year high, dropped on yesterday’s news.

Drakes general manager Bob Soang said the new centre would be “the most advanced independent distribution and logistics centre in the state”.

He said the centre would be a “key plank” of the company’s “vertical integration strategy”.

“As a local family-owned business we are pleased to create so many jobs in the northern suburbs of Adelaide which have faced many challenges in recent years,” he said.

The City of Playford says the project will be a “major boost” for the local economy, to support the forecasted growth of 35,000 people in the council area by 2036.

Preliminary site works have already begun on the 104,00 sqm development, which will have capacity to house approximately 23,000 separate grocery, dairy and frozen food product lines.

Drakes Supermarkets will continue to operate its fresh fruit and vegetable centre at Pooraka and its meat distribution centre at Beverley.

The family-owned retailer currently operates 57 stores across South Australia and Queensland, reporting an annual turnover in excess of $1 billion.

-with AAP

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