AS MUCH as I like to support small local businesses, I'm still excited when a big-name business expands on the Fraser Coast.
Independent operators deserve all the business they can get, and competition from the major players is a real concern for many of them.
But on the flip side to that - the arrival or expansion of chain stores is still a massive boost for the Fraser Coast.
They tend to employ larger numbers of people than independent operators, and a lot of research and investment goes into their decision so it is less likely they will disappear overnight.
Brand new shops and additional franchises are not cheap to set up, so to see two new arrivals is a vote of confidence not just in how the Fraser Coast economy is travelling today, but also the expectation of how it will fare in the future.
There is also an argument to be made that where you get one major retailer expanding, more are likely to follow in chain reaction.
The only shame that I can see is that all of these new developments are all centred squarely in Hervey Bay.
Judging by the number of people who travel to the Bay to do their shopping and dining, the demand is there in Maryborough and surrounding areas as well - it would be great to see other areas getting the same tick of approval.
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