CONVENIENCE retailing entrepreneur Harris Aslam has set his sights on a new challenge, with plans to open a new store at the site of the former Nisa Extra in Perth Road, Dundee.
His company, Eros Retail Ltd, has submitted an application to Dundee Council to take control of the site, which was previously run by award-winning retailer Iain Wilson.
The business closed down earlier this year, following months of public speculation over depleting stock levels.
Harris, whose family owned the site before selling it to Wilson in 2011, said he saw tremendous potential in the location.
“It’s a brilliant site,” he said.
“It’s got a massive university within its catchment and a school with 2,000 pupils so it’s an ideal site for food to go and a very exciting project for us.”
Harris said that with around 7,500 sq ft to fill, the success of the store will be down to how he and his team utilise the space.
And with a few supermarkets and convenience stores nearby, he says, it will be crucial to create a point of difference.
“What sets our business apart from something like Tesco will be the points of difference we have in store.
“We have been exploring potential in-store partnership opportunities for Dundee like a Fisher & Donaldson bakery or an in-store butchers.
“Another area we are looking at very closely right now is e-cigarettes, and the possibility of introducing a vape shop in store.”
Despite putting successful trading models in place at other Eros Retail sites, Harris wouldn’t apply a one-size-fits-all approach.
He said: “It’s all about looking
at each store individually and making it right for the area it is in. If there is a butcher nearby, for example, we don’t want to be driving anybody out of business.”
And, speaking of the new Dundee site in particular, he continued: “The size of the store, the nature of the store and the fact it’s got car parking, gives it massive scope.
“Getting the synergy is where the real big wins are going to be.”
• Click here to read about Eros Retail’s latest store opening, Greens of Tillicoultry.