Britain's Tesco takes on discount rivals with launch of Jack's

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With the launch of Jack's, its own cut-price chain named after founder Jack Cohen, Lewis is adopting their model using own label goods and a smaller selection of brands.

The first two stores will open on 20 September in Chatteris, Cambridgeshire and Immingham, Lincolnshire.

Most of the products on the shelves will be own-brand and eight out of 10 Jack's food and drink products will be "grown, reared or made" in Britain, according to Tesco. Articles appear on for a limited time.

The stores will also stock some familiar major brands, such as Coca Cola, as well as a range of general merchandise on a "When it's Gone, It's Gone" basis.

Tesco plans to open another 15 branches over the next year, five of which will be converted from existing Tesco stores.

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Commenting at the launch of the new concept in Chatteris, Cambridgeshire, Lewis said that the strong United Kingdom sourcing focus evident in the store was due to customer feedback, rather than the retailer insulating itself against potential Brexit sourcing challenges.

The UK's biggest retailer will be opening its first Jack's store today as it brings the fight to German discounters Aldi and Lidl.

He added: "This reflects the strength of Aldi and Lidl and the volume of their market share".

Customers will be able to compare details for themselves before long: in one location, yet to be revealed, there is set to be a Jack's and a Tesco side-by-side, Lewis said.

Jack's will operate a low-cost business model that is created to keep costs low and prices down.

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Jack's will have a range of 2,600 products, is less than a Tesco classic, which many will be sold under the new brand.

"The intention is for us to be cheapest in town", he said at the Chatteris store, which was built as a Tesco supermarket, but was mothballed in 2015 when the group was in crisis.

"It goes without saying, but Tesco will have to find a way to attract customers from the likes of Aldi, Lidl and Iceland, rather than convert existing Tesco customers into discount shoppers through brand association".

The launch of Jack's is part of Tesco's centenary celebrations which will see the business mark 100 years in 2019.

"With its heavy Union Jack branding and promises on provenance Jack's is clearly looking to make its name as a solid British retailer".

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