|Address:||PO Box 73, Baird Avenue, Dryburgh Industrial Estate, Dundee DD1 9NF, United Kingdom|
|Partners:||Safeway, Cable & Wireless, mmO2, NTL|
|Competitors:||Sainsbury, Carrefour, Ahold|
Tesco PLC NASDAQ: TESOF is a United Kingdom based international supermarket chain. Originally specializing in food, it has moved into areas such as clothes, consumer electronics, consumer financial services, internet service and consumer telecoms.
UK store formats
Tesco's UK stores are divided into in four formats, differentiated by size and the range of products sold.
- Tesco Extra are larger, out-of-town hypermarkets which stock all of Tesco's product ranges. The number of these is being increased by about 20 a year, mainly by conversions from the second category. Typical size 90,000 square feet (8400 m²).
- Tesco stores are standard large supermarkets stocking groceries plus a much smaller range of non-food goods than Extras. The "standard" Tesco format, accounting for the majority of UK floorspace. Most are located in suburbs of cities or on the edges of large and medium sized towns. Typical size 40,000 square feet (3700 m²).
- Tesco Metro stores are sized between normal Tesco stores and Tesco Express stores. They are mostly located in city centres and on the high streets of small towns. Typical size 10,000 square feet (900 m²).
- Tesco Express stores are neighbourhood convenience shops, stocking mainly food with an emphasis on higher margin products due to lack of economies of scale, alongside everyday essentials. Found in busy city centre districts and small shopping precincts in residential areas, and on petrol station forecourts. The largest category by number of store, but a minor part of the estate by total size. Typical size 2,000 square feet (190 m²).
Tesco operates on the internet service in the UK, the Republic of Ireland and South Korea. Grocery sales are available within delivery range of selected stores, goods being hand-picked within each store. This model, in contrast to the warehouse model initially followed by UK competitor Sainsbury, and still followed by UK internet only supermarket Ocado, allowed rapid expansion with limited investment, but has been criticised by consumers for the high level of substitutions arising from variable stock levels in stores. Nevertheless, it has been popular and is oversubscribed in some areas.
Outside the grocery department, Tesco also sell other products on the web, from wine, flowers and consumer electronics to utilities (gas, electricity) and holidays.
Tesco operates ISP, mobile phone and home phone businesses. These are available to UK residential consumers and marketed via the Tesco website and through Tesco stores.
Though it launched its ISP service in 1998, the firm didn't get serious about telecoms until 2003. It has not purchased or built a telecoms network, but instead has pursued a strategy of pairing its marketing strength with the expertise of existing telcos. In the autumn of 2003, Tesco Mobile was launched as a joint venture with mmO2 and Tesco Home Phone created in partnership with Cable & Wireless. In August 2004, Tesco broadband, an ADSL-based service delivered via BT phone lines, was launched in partnership with NTL.
Tesco announced in December 2004 that it has signed up 500,000 customers to its mobile service in the 12 months since launch.
In addition to opening its own stores, Tesco has expanded by taking over other chains, including:
- Victor Value, England, 1968 (sold again in 1986)
- William Low, Scotland, 1994
- Quinnsworth, Stewarts and Crazy Prices stores, Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland from Associated British Foods, 1997
- 13 HIT hypermarkets in Poland, 2002
- T & S Stores, owner of the UK convenience store chains One Stop and Day & Nite, 2002
- C Two-Network in Japan, 2003
- A majority stake in Turkish supermarket chain Kipa in 2003.
- Lotus in Thailand
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