Superquinn, the minnow of the Irish multiples, is planning a major expansion that will add ten new stores to its total of 21 over the next five years.

The first of the new outlets is likely to take a year, according to Simon Burke, who was installed as company chief executive when Select Holdings, an Irish business consortium, bought the chain from the Quinn family early last year. The new owners "did not inherit a pipeline of sites" when they took over, he said, and creating one would take time.

Superquinn, he disclosed, had considered the Iceland stores as an option, when they were put up for sale last year after the company pulled out of the Republic, but decided they were not suitable. The ten new outlets were likely to be in new developments.

Burke was speaking after the unveiling of a revamped Superquinn store in Dublin's Blanchardstown, the first in a make­over of the entire network, at a cost of €63m. The new look includes "a cooking inspiration area" with a chef to demonstrate recipes.

Burke is keen to update the stores' image. He aims to have the remaining 20 outlets revamped within three years. "I don't want an A and B chain - A stores that look smart and B stores that look shabby," he said.