Iceland opens its first Swift – new chain of c-stores on its way

Iceland opens its first Swift – new chain of c-stores on its way
Iceland MD Richard Walker outside the first Swift store in the UK

Iceland has opened the first of its new chain of C-stores aimed at challenging the likes of Sainsbury’s Local and Tesco Express. Amazon has opened its second Amazon Fresh c-store at London’s Wembley stadium.

The first ‘Swift’ branch opened in a former Iceland unit in Newecastle’s Four Lane Ends disctrict in an area of high footfall. “Our last ‘one-store trial’ of a new store format was The Food Warehouse in 2014 and we now have 140 stores,” said Iceland MD Richard Walker.

“If this trial resonates with consumers there is potential to expand it both within the existing Iceland store estate and beyond to expand our existing network of stores in almost 1,000 communities across the UK.”

With Iceland also inside The Range discount stores on Boucher Road and Connswater, it is expected we will see Swift stores in Northern Ireland.

Fresh and frozen

The shop will sell fresh and frozen food as well as alcohol and tobacco, plus breakfasts and lunches. Iceland said that its “novel layout breaks down the traditional barriers between frozen and chilled food to provide a complete range of meal solutions”.

Iceland registered Swift as a trademark in 2020, saying at the time that it related to ‘mail order retail services’.

New concept

Matt Downes, head of space and format development at Iceland, said: “This is a really exciting trial of a completely new concept that we think will be ideally suited to this high traffic location.

Managing director Richard Walker has tweeted a picture of himself outside the store with the message: “An exciting week ahead.”

The North Wales based company celebrated its 50th anniversary last year.