Leading jewellery retailer Argento has confirmed plans to open a new store in Portadown, one of seven opening as part of a major £1 million investment programme.
The new stores, including one planned for Portadown, form part of the ambitious Belfast-based company’s strategy to increase its brand presence in key, high footfall areas and to enhance the customer experience.
It is understood the Portadown store will be located prominently in the town centre and will open later this year.
The company said the new store openings will bring the total number of outlets under its ownership to almost 50 and will add at least 50 new jobs to its existing 350-strong workforce across the UK and Ireland by the end of 2014.
Pete Boyle, chief executive of Argento, said, “We are really pleased to be able confirm plans to extend our unique, quality jewellery offering to even more customers across Northern Ireland and Scotland by opening seven new Argento and Pandora stores in key areas where we see further growth opportunity.”
The ambitious Belfast-based firm – the UK and Ireland’s biggest retailer of top designer jewellery brands Pandora, Thomas Sabo and Nomination, as well as its own brand jewellery – said it is opening four additional stores in Northern Ireland and three in Scotland. The Portadown store is to open this year.
“This latest investment provides us with an important opportunity to increase our brand presence and customer base in a series of new, strategic locations and delivers on our commitment to assist in the revitalisation of the High Street and in the development of the main trading areas of our towns and cities,” Pete said.
Already the fastest-growing online jewellery store in the UK and Ireland, Argento is keen to invest further in growing its online presence as part of its plan to accelerate web-based sales.
Pete Boyle added, “The market for quality, branded but affordable jewellery remains strong and the outlook is bright.
“Since Argento was established in 1997, we have invested heavily in building brand presence on the High Street, in shopping centres and online, and I believe that this latest investment will really give us the edge to push the company rapidly forward.
“This £1 million expansion programme not only underlines the confidence and support we have for our traditional in-store customers and our commitment to investing in the High Street.”