Woolworths (ASX:WOW) share price up as stores converted to online hubs

Western Sydney is set to have two fewer supermarkets as Woolworths repurposes the stores to be distribution hubs.

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Male supermarket worker stands in front of a crate of fresh lettuce, fulfilling online shopping orders.

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The Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX: WOW) share price is in the green today as the company announces it’s converting two Western Sydney supermarkets into online delivery hubs.

Woolworths’ Cecil Hills and Fairfield supermarkets will soon close temporarily as part of activity to support the company’s online delivery service.

Right now, the Woolworths share price is $39.49, 0.8% higher than its previous close.

Let’s take a closer at today’s news from Woolworths.

Supermarkets converted to online hubs

The Woolworths share price is up amid news two Western Sydney supermarkets will close.

Woolies will repurpose the supermarkets into online order distribution hubs. The new hubs will help the supermarket giant fill thousands more online orders each week.

Woolworths Fairfield will close to in-store customers at 10pm tonight.

All staff will continue to work at the hubs, charged with packing online orders.

The same fate awaits Woolworths Cecil Hills. It will close to in-store shoppers from 10pm on Friday.

According to Woolworths, they selected these stores to minimise the impact on local shoppers. Each site has between three and four Woolworths stores within a 5-kilometre radius.

Woolworths is also looking to hire 200 new staff members in Sydney to help deliver online and direct-to-boot orders.

Commentary from management

Woolworths’ operations manager for Western Sydney, Ian Roper, commented on the news that might be driving the company’s share price today:

The demand for online delivery continues to grow, particularly in Western Sydney, with more customers in self-isolation or seeking to limit their outings…

It’s an uncertain time for many in Sydney, and this will provide extra delivery capacity where it’s most needed to support the essential grocery needs of many more customers online.

Woolworths share price snapshot

The Woolworths share price has been having a good year so far.

It’s currently 13.77% higher than it was at the start of 2021. It has also increased by 12% since this time last year.

The retail monolith has a market capitalisation of $50 billion, with approximately 1.2 billion shares outstanding.

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