Business
JM | Dec 17, 2020

PriceSmart pushing forward with second store in Portmore despite delays

/ Our Today

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Building permits approved for commercial complex in Mobay

United States-based retail membership club, PriceSmart Incorporated, is now pushing forward with its plans for constructing a second store in Jamaica in Portmore, St. Catherine.

The plans, which have been on the drawing board since last year with an initial opening date of September this year, were pushed back as a result of the global pandemic and other local challenges. However, the retail membership club is now ready to put those plans in motion and move forward with the construction project.

In September last year, PriceSmart, which is headquartered in San Diego, acquired approximately 218,000 square feet of land in Portmore to construct its second club in Jamaica, adding to its sole store at Red Hills Road in St Andrew.

“We also believe there is strong demand for expansion of our business model and warehouse clubs in Jamaica.”

SHERRY S. BAHRAMBEYGUI, CEO of PriceSmart Inc.

The Portmore store, which is to be located at Braeton Parkway, will be PriceSmart’s 49th across the various countries in Latin America and Caribbean where it has operations.

Commenting on the plans for a second store in Jamaica, CEO of PriceSmart Inc., Sherry S. Bahrambeygui said: “We also believe there is strong demand for expansion of our business model and warehouse clubs in Jamaica.”

Green light for commercial complex in Montego Bay

In the meantime, PriceSmart has received approvals from the National Environment & Planning Agency (NEPA) for the construction and operation of a commercial complex and office space in the second city of Montego Bay. The application for development approvals was filed by International Built Environment Consultants (IBEC), acting on behalf of PriceSmart Realty Jamaica Limited, the local arm of the parent company, PriceSmart Inc.

IBEC has been hired by the retailer to conduct pre-conception due diligence on the 5,000 square-metre property at Catherine Hall, Montego Bay. It is understood that the local arm of PriceSmart is still weighing whether it will use the property for a third store in Jamaica or for warehouse purposes.

 Guatemalan expansion

The PriceSmart Inc. CEO reiterated that the company is still planning on having a 48th store in Guatemala City, Guatemala, which is expected to open in the third quarter of next year. In June of last year PriceSmart acquired nearly 150,000 square feet of  land in Cayalá (Zone 5 municipality), southeast of Guatemala City, Guatemala, where it plans to build its fifth club in Guatemala.

Bahrambeygui reported that “despite the roller coaster we rode with most of the world in this last year, we are ready to proceed with the construction of two new clubs, one each in Guatemala and Jamaica. We expect to open these clubs in the next fiscal year. The Cayalá Guatemala club, our fifth club in Guatemala, follows the successful opening and solid performance thus far of our fourth club opened in Guatemala last year.”

In a statement, the PriceSmart boss emphasised that, “new club openings are likely to initially adversely impact our comparable net merchandise sales. However, as we move forward with new club openings, as in this case, when we believe that in the long run, such expansion provides opportunities for growth by way of incremental membership, growth in net merchandise sales and services, and a better shopping experience for our members.”

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