Discount Russian supermarket given new opening date in Preston after delays

Known at the ‘Russian version of Lidl’, the discount supermarket Mere claims to be 30 per cent cheaper than Aldi and Lidl, and was set to open its first store in Preston in June.

By James Holt
Tuesday, 3rd August 2021, 3:49 pm

The food discounter founded in Russia with 3,200 stores internationally is now gearing up to open its first UK branch in Preston on August 14.

The Post understands that the supermarket was first set to open in June, however, this was pushed back to July as the company continued to ship in stock for the store.

And the mid-July date has been finally moved to mid-August as the supermarket chain continued to meet with suppliers and manufacturers.

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The discount supermarket is gearing up to open this month

The Russian company, set to open its first UK store on Miller Road, Preston, is also hoping to continue expanding and building a network of shops across the UK.

Expansion Manager Vlad Sean said: "Our concept is very different to the usual supermarket or retailer, and our main aim is just to provide shoppers with the very cheapest prices and essential products.

"It has been a challenge during Covid-19 because the virus and Brexit has made shipping certain products more of a struggle, which we always expected would happen.

"We try to ensure all our products are 20 to 30 per cent below all of our other competitors so that we are the most affordable supermarket out there. We just want to provide the basic goods for people to get their shopping.

Products will be placed on wooden pallets in the discount store

"We have thousands of stores across the world so we know there is a market for it and we know what shoppers needs are. We stock the simple and basic goods so that we are accessible and affordable for all."

Opening their first UK store just outside of Preston centre, Vlad said the new site is still easily accessible for all people and is set to be a hit with families and those who may be more cash-strapped due to the pandemic.

The Grocer reported that the supermarket chain, which first began in 2009, has a long-term target of over 300 stores in the UK within the next decade, with Preston being the first to open its doors.

Inside the no-frills store, food will be displayed on pallets, including in a walk-in chiller with around 1,200 different products on offer.

The store will open on August 14 almost two months after its initial opening date

Manager Vlad, who opened the first European store in 2017, added: "Because of our great prices, we think people will find out about us and start spreading the word as we grow because everybody wants to shop somewhere that is more affordable.

"It will bring something new and different to the area, as our strategy is very competitive. We have another three shops set to open in the UK soon so are hoping to quickly expand the business after this.

"Covid has actually been the perfect time for us to open and expand as a business and we hope to begin creating a network of shops across the UK. Everything is ready to go and the shop is full of all the essential supplies."

The discounter plans to open its first four UK stores this year, in Preston, Castleford, Caldicot and Mold and is continuing to hire staff for its Caldicot store on its Facebook Page.

The Preston store, on Miller Road, Ribbleton, will open on August 14.

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