150 new jobs as Centra revels in €241m spend

Bonnie Conlon (9), from St Margarets; Evan Wilkes (9), from Artane; Martin Kelleher, managing director of Centra, and Hannah Mahony (7), from Swords. Photo: Maxwells

CENTRA plans to create 150 jobs as it expands it network of stores nationwide.

The convenience retailer aims to open up to seven stores by the end of year and take over the running of another six established premises securing another 150 positions.

The jobs boost was revealed as figures show Centra spent €241.1m in local communities around its 460 stores in 2013.

Jobs Minister Richard Bruton said Centra's plan to create and sustain approximately 300 jobs is a further signal of growing confidence in the recovery of consumer demand.

"These jobs, and the millions spent on locally produced goods and services, has a significant knock-on economic benefit for communities, towns and villages across the country, and is the latest in a series of signs that domestic demand is starting to recover and economic growth is beginning to impact on every county," he said.

Centra employs 11,280 people nationwide, with each Centra store also accounting for 25 jobs in the surrounding community.

Its community impact study found this equates to €4.5m per week through payments to local suppliers and services, wages, charitable donations and local sponsorship.

"Our study shows Centra is spending almost a quarter of a billion euros in communities all over Ireland, that's over €524,000 per store," managing director Martin Kelleher added.

"We now have solid data demonstrating the significant economic importance and impact of our stores up and down the country."

The chain did particularly well from the World Cup, when pizza sales went through the roof.

It sold almost 70,000 pizzas over the four week period, an increase of 54pc on last year.