French-headquartered homeware and DIY chain Leroy Merlin is opening a new store near the US Embassy on Vassilissis Sofias Avenue in central Athens on Friday, hoping to balance its financial figures in Greece in 2018 after several loss-making years.
The new three-story, 5,300-square meter outlet represents an investment of 5 million euros and will employ 125 people. It aims to attract shoppers who live and work in the city center, as well as people who are unwilling to spend money on tolls and fuel to visit one of the chain’s other stores.
Leroy Merlin expects the new branch to draw an average of 600,000 visitors per year, compared to 800,000 for the bigger stores on the outskirts of the city.
The new outlet offers easy access by metro, buses and trolleys, along with 300 parking spaces. Crucially, being within central Athens, it will also be able to open on Sundays from May to October (excluding the second Sunday of August).
This will take the total number of Leroy Merlin stores in Greece and Cyprus to seven, with the company planning to develop another 13 in the next three to five years: They will not only include typical Leroy Merlin stores covering up to 9,000 sq.m., as there will also be some city outlets up to 4,000 sq.m. and others no bigger than 1,000 sq.m.