UK Grocer Booths Reportedly Up For Sale
UK grocer Booths could be looking for a buyer to take over its retail business.
The Guardian reports that the upmarket grocery chain, often referred to as the 'Waitrose of the North', has been put up for sale for between £130 million and £150 million, and it is said to have brought in advisers to consider bids.
Family-owned Booths chiefly trades in the north of England, operating around 30 stores in Lancashire, Cumbria, Yorkshire, Cheshire and Manchester.
The company has been controlled by the Booth family since its first store opened in Blackpool, in 1847, and the family still holds 96% of shares, while the remaining stake is owned by staff members.
Regarding the potential sale, a spokesperson for Booths told The Guardian that the company has always kept its strategic options open.
“Booths has been retailing for over 170 years, and it remains a very strong, resilient and well-loved brand," the spokesperson said. "One of our strengths has been our ability to adapt to changing market conditions.”
Last year, Booths saw its underlying trading profits fall to £2.6 million from £3.1 million the previous year. Meanwhile, in May, Chris Dee stepped down as chief executive after 22 years with the company.
However, the retailer has still been making expansion plans. Last month, a selection of Booths' products were added to AmazonFresh, in an effort to boost online sales across the UK.
© 2017 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Sarah Harford. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.