Strengthening the head office team would allow suppliers to work more closely with the retailer and give easier access to buyers and other key contacts, said Iceland.
The retailer also described its product development kitchen – created as part of its first wave of investment in 2016 – had proved invaluable to the company and its suppliers in developing, testing and showcasing new products.
Iceland’s £2M product development kitchen was created as part of the retailer’s first wave of investment in 2016.
Iceland’s head of product development Neil Nugent told FoodManufacture.co.uk: “The new Iceland kitchen provides a place to build innovative partnerships with suppliers to create exclusive recipes and will allow us to drive our food development faster than any other retailer.
‘Benefit our supply base’
“Further major investment in the Iceland digital team is all about driving our sales growth online, which is obviously going to benefit our supply base as whole.”
The second wave of investment will see £2.5M spent on enhancing the working environment at its Deeside HQ, with work to be completed later this year.
Work includes the installation of a new air conditioning system and LED lighting throughout the building, buying new office furniture, renovations to the staff restaurant and the installation of new restaurant kitchen.
Iceland joint md Nick Canning said the £5M investment was one of the largest capital outlays the firm had made on the site since 1979.
‘Product quality and innovation’
“Over the last year we have strengthened our head office team by around 100 people to support our renewed focus on product quality and innovation, the rapid growth of our e-commerce business, major improvements in our merchandising, and the expansion of The Food Warehouse,” said Canning.
“The success of all these initiatives is reflected in the strong sales performance recorded by Kantar Worldpanel and others, showing that Iceland is once again one of the fastest growing food retailers in the UK.”
Canning said the redevelopment had given a £10M boost to the local economy.