Nisa store closes within weeks of rival opening next door - but not for the reason everyone thinks

The Nisa store is no longer trading
-Credit: (Image: LancsLive)


A convenience store has shut its doors weeks after a rival opened a few yards away - but bosses have told LancsLive the added competition did NOT contribute to its closure.

Tesco opened its brand-new Express store in Darwen at the end of last year. The store, in Falcon Avenue off the A666, has proved hugely popular with neighbouring residents grateful for an on-site car park.

The UK-wide chain's convenience store is located almost directly next to a Nisa which was previously a Co-op. As a result of Co-op's acquisition of Nisa in 2018 a number of Co-op stores, including the one in Darwen, moved over to the Nisa brand but continue to stock a range of Co-op's own brand products.

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Ahead of Tesco opening some of those who regularly shopped in the Nisa store believed it would struggle to compete with the opening of a rival outlet. Parking for customers has long been an issue so with the Tesco boasting a 16-space car park some suspected it would be "only a matter of time" before Nisa shuts up shop.

Regular customer Sally Johnston, who lives nearby in the Sunnyhurst area, has been shopping in the Co-op, and then the Nisa, for several years.

"It's a shame but I think it's only a matter of time before the Nisa shuts," she said.

However a spokesperson for the convenience chain has revealed the reason is not due to increased competition in the local area.

Nisa stores are operated on a franchise basis with the independent retailer responsible for the day-to-day running of the outlet. A spokesperson for Nisa has confirmed that internal issues meant the company is no longer trading with the Blackburn Road store, but was unable to go into further details due to legal reasons.

The spokesperson for Nisa said: "Nisa can confirm it is no longer trading with the store."

Sally Johnston was shocked to discover the demise of Nisa was not due to competition from Tesco. "I'm absolutely gobsmacked," she told LancsLive.

"I bet if you asked anyone in Darwen why they thought the Nisa had shut they'd say it's because of Tesco opening. It's a massive shock."