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'PCs key to John Lewis growth' - PC Retail

'PCs key to John Lewis growth'

Desktops and laptops to be given more floor space after triumphant year
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Broadline department chain and PC Retail Award winner John Lewis has told PC Retail its computer department will form a key part of its ambitious plans to double the size of its nationwide operation by 2015, following 'explosive' laptop growth in the last year.

The retailer has a slew of store openings planned in the coming months starting with its eagerly anticipated Liverpool One outlet on May 29th, each of which will feature expanded technology departments with desktops and laptops taking a central role.

"We've just opened a new shop in Cambridge before Christmas and are opening a new shop in Liverpool which is 20 times the size of the current store," head of buying for consumer electronics Helen Keppel-Compton (pictured) told PC Retail.

"That opens at the end of May, and will have a much larger computing area than the existing branch. We've got a brand new shop opening in Leicester in September, and another one opening next year.

"We've got a lot of other new branches in the pipeline as well. Computing is becoming more of a central part of the department, and relatively it's got more space than it had previously. We will have doubled the overall size of our business in the UK by 2015."

These bold plans come off the back of a storming period at the chain for PCs and associated products, in which it trumped the growth of the market a whole.

"Obviously the market has grown a lot; looking at where the total market has gone we have done better. Particularly when you consider we've got 26 shops and one internet portal. We've done extremely well and we have grown our market share in the last 12 months."

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The rise and rise of John Lewis

After a storming year topped off by scooping the High Street Multiple accolade at the PC Retail Awards last month, John Lewis has big plans to consolidate its position in the home computing market. Andrew Wooden talks to head of buying for consumer electronics Helen Keppel-Compton.