business news in context, analysis with attitude

In the UK, The Independent reports that Tesco is getting ready to set up an office in Chicago that will serve as a precursor to an eventual opening of its Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Markets there.

According to the story, a team of executives already has a team of executives on the ground there, looking for property that can used both for retail stores and a Midwest distribution center. Matthew Price, a real estate director for Fresh & Easy, is said to be in charge of the Chicago property acquisition team.

No target date has been set for when Fresh & Easy might begin opening stores in Chicago.

As the Independent writes, “The revelation is the clearest indication yet that Tesco intends to gain geographical spread in the US beyond the 71 Fresh & Easy stores it has already opened in southern California, Arizona and Nevada.”

KC's View:
No surprise here, except maybe to some folks who have been predicting Fresh & Easy’s imminent demise.

This isn’t to suggest that Tesco’s US operations are glitch free and ready for prime time. But Tesco obviously believes that it is onto something, and that momentum is important if it is going to attain critical mass.