FOLLOWING an 18-month delay caused by approvals processes, building and store fit out, grocery clearance store NQR opened its doors to Sale customers on Thursday.
NQR regional manager Ben McLeod said after a long run acquiring the required permits, the former Crown Hotel had undergone a major transformation.
He said NQR had been working with landlord Dave O’Neill throughout the process.
“The landlord, Dave O’Neill, well known for restaurants around the area, has been great,” Mr McLeod said.
“We have been working in conjunction.
“It has taken the best part of three weeks shelving and stocking shelves; 18 months of building and three weeks of fit out.”
Mr McLeod said the store would employ 16 locals.
“We have employed about 16 people, all locals,” he said.
“There are a few support crew from Melbourne and surrounds to assist with setting up and (staff) training.
“A bit of competition is good and it is Australian competition too, we are 100 per cent Australian owned.
“We have quite a different business model to other business in Sale too; most of the stock on our shelves is Australian made.”
Mr McLeod said the Sale store was part of a regional expansion in recent times, following the opening of new stores in Sebastopol, Echuca and Horsham.
“We find that regional areas support us,” he said.
NQR sells a changing mix of everyday staples and home needs including packaged, dairy and frozen foods, toiletries, cleaning products, pet foods and much more at up to 80 per cent off normal retail price. Most are big brand, premium quality manufacturers’ surplus, end-of-line items, packaging errors, cancelled and over-supply orders.
NQR chief executive officer Aaron Fitzgerald said the opening was in response to local shopper demand.
“Shoppers are finding our big brand bargain groceries and household items a real boon in these times of cost-cutting and restraint,” he said.
“Shoppers know they will save far more shopping at NQR than on any fuel loyalty program offered anywhere else.
“NQR also offers a 100 per cent money back guarantee.”