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Tesco/Dobbies East Kilbride joint venture scrapped

Published: 19 January 2015
Embattled grocer Tesco has ditched its plans for a joint venture with Dobbies in East Kilbride.
Tesco/Dobbies East Kilbride joint venture scrapped
The project, which was to have been the first new-build initiative between the garden centre retailer and the supermarket, was given the green light last summer. But underperforming Tesco has now embarked on a programme that will see stores closed and plans for new stores scrapped nationwide.

The decision to pull the plug on the East Kilbride venture - which would have created 400 jobs - has sparked a furious response from local MP Michael McCann.

In a letter to him explaining the decision, Tesco chief executive officer Dave Lewis wrote: "Our performance as a business has fallen significantly short of where we would want it to be. As a result the financial resources we have available for new investment are severely constrained and we have had to critically review all current and future investment decisions.

"My absolute imperative has to be to protect the future of our business for the c 300,000 colleagues we employ in communities all over the UK. In recent weeks we have had to face up to some very tough decisions which affect many hard-working people. I don't do that lightly and so it is with a heavy heart that I am announcing today that we are unable to proceed with 49 new planned store developments across the country, including our planned joint store in East Kilbride."

Mr McCann wrote back: "I have been pressing your company for some time about when you intended to start construction. However, I surmised some time ago that there were problems because of the obfuscation, dithering and lack of commitment any time I raised the subject with your colleagues.

"How your company got in such a mess and how you remedy the well-publicised problems is a matter for you. My sole concern is the interests of my constituents."

He said he now wanted to know whether the East Kilbride site would be put on the market and if Tesco would allow it to be sold to a rival.

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