The world's largest Primark store has opened its doors in Birmingham for the first time today (Thursday).
The £70 million development span 161,000 sq ft over five floors and includes a Disney-themed cafe, two other restaurants, a beauty studio and a barber shop.
Given its size, the Primark store is being likened to a department store, and vastly contrasts the fortunes of the big players in the department store industry. Debenhams has this week entered administration and uncertainty continues to grow around the long-term future of House of Fraser after its problems in recent years.
Primark said the store, which occupies an entire former shopping centre, was an opportunity for it to do something special. Department stores are typically targeted at the older generations, with younger shoppers far more likely to shop online than visit physical stores. But with Primark's focus on the younger market, retail experts are eagerly assessing whether or not this type of Primark store can lure younger people back to bricks and mortar stores.
The retailer said the store has created 500 new jobs, in addition to moving 430 jobs from its previous store in Birmingham.
Primark has long been a recipient of criticism over environmental and social impacts - in-store staff pay, the salaries of those who make the clothes, and the environmental impact of 'fast fashion' being the main talking points.
However, Primark argues it can maintain low prices because it doesn't spend money on advertising and has low-profit margins.