Asda set for Ballymena as part of £600m UK-wide deal with Co-op
Asda is set to arrive in Ballymena after the company agreed to acquire 132 sites from The Co-operative Group (“Co-op”) in a transaction worth £600 million, as part of its growth strategy to move into the convenience market and bring Asda value to more local communities.
This morning, Thursday 1 September, a spokesperson for Co-op confirmed to Love Ballymena that the Broughshane Street store and petrol filling station is the only site in Northern Ireland included in the deal.
Asda’s overall purchase includes 129 established, high-quality sites with a grocery retail store of between 1,500 and 3,000 square feet and attached petrol filling station, and three development sites. They are located nationwide and will create a new and distinct format for Asda in the convenience market.
The circa 2,300 colleagues currently employed in the Co-op stores will transfer to Asda’s employment under TUPE transfer following completion and after a transition period.
Mohsin Issa, Co-owner of Asda, said:
“We have always been clear in our ambition to grow Asda and are hugely excited to create this new and distinct part of our business, giving us the opportunity to bring Asda value in fuel and groceries to even more customers and communities across the UK.
“We see convenience as a significant growth opportunity for the business. This acquisition accelerates our strategy in this area and forms part of our long-term ambition to become the UK’s second largest supermarket.
“We look forward to welcoming the Co-op colleagues to this new part of our business after we complete the transaction and due processes in the coming months.”
Shirine Khoury-Haq, Chief Executive at the Co-op commented:
“This transaction is in line with our strategy to move away from operating petrol forecourts and supports our vision of Co-operating for a fairer world while building our core leading convenience business.
“I would like to thank our incredible colleagues in these stores, and we will work closely with Asda to ensure a smooth transition.”
The transaction is due to complete before the end of 2022.