John Lewis has purchased a property on 129-133 North Street in Brighton, with the long-term aim of opening a store in the city.
The retailer bought the site, which is currently occupied by Boots and two other stores, in a deal worth approximately £20m from the BP Pension Fund.
Property Week reported that Boots has six years to run on its lease, which takes it to 2021. It is understood John Lewis has been searching for a suitable property for some time.
A John Lewis spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that John Lewis PLC is now the owner of 129-133 North Street in Brighton. This will not impact the current tenants and the businesses will continue to trade as normal for the foreseeable future.
“We do have an ambition to eventually have a presence in Brighton, but plans for this are a considerable way off.”