Freight News, Logistics, Sea

We’ll be at home on Freeport East, says The Range

[ June 30, 2022   //   ]

The first business has committed to taking space at Freeport East, one ofnew English Freeports in England announced by the government in March 2021.

Home, garden and leisure products retailer The Range will occupy a unit of almost 1.2m sq ft on the Freeport East Gateway 14 site.

Conditional contracts have been exchanged to develop the distribution unit on a freehold turnkey basis with Jaynic, the development partner for Gateway 14 Ltd which is wholly owned by Freeport East partner Mid Suffolk District Council.  

The freeport’s acting chairman, George Kieffer, said: “The unique location of Freeport East, close to some of the world’s major international shipping routes, provides a range of benefits to businesses which locate here. Freeport East is focused upon value-added logistics, advanced manufacturing and the clean energy sectors and we are delighted to welcome The Range as the first of what will be many businesses to commit to the Freeport.”

The Range has over 200 retail stores nationwide and carries more than 65,000 products. It has two existing major distribution centres. It is planning over 100  further stores across the UK as well as growing its on-line presence.

Chief executive Alex Simpkin, said: “This acquisition represents a £200m investment and is integral to our expansion plans. We were naturally attracted to the site due to its commitment to sustainability and proximity to the East coast container port of Felixstowe. The Freeport benefits that Gateway 14 provides allows us to evolve our ecommerce division nationwide and accelerate store growth”

Gateway 14 chair Sir Christopher Haworth, commented: “Welcoming The Range to Gateway 14 is a significant step forward for the site and demonstrates its important position in Suffolk and the wider Eastern region. Gateway 14 has huge potential not only for nationally important brands like The Range, but also to support local and small businesses.”

Jaynic development director of Jaynic, Ben Oughton, said: “Securing such a significant first occupier, only months after we started building the infra-structure at Gateway 14, demonstrates how important a location the A14 corridor has become, and is borne out by the huge interest there is in Gateway 14, with its Freeport benefits and proximity to Felixstowe.”

Gateway 14 is one of three sites in Freeport East and has outline planning consent for a 2.36m sq ft mixed-use innovation, business and warehousing scheme. Construction of the site infrastructure is already well underway.