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The Co-operative Group has signed a deal to buy more than 50 pharmacies in the north of England.
The organisation has bought 51 branches, and one non-dispensing outlet, from the PCT Healthcare Group.
The pharmacies, in Greater Manchester, Cheshire, Lancashire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire and South Yorkshire, currently trade as either Peak Pharmacy or Tims and Parker, and have an annual turnover of around £51m.
It means the group now controls a total of 779 pharmacies, and the move is its first major acquisition since the The Co-operative Group and United Co-operatives merged in the summer.
Co-operative Trading Group chief executive Peter Marks said: “This is a very significant deal and one which underlines our healthcare business’ position as one of the fastest-growing pharmacy chains in the UK.
“I am delighted that with this acquisition we will add such a large number of high quality pharmacies to our existing network. Not only do they complement the branches we already have, but this is a welcome and major expansion in our heartlands in the north of England.
“We have an innovative and fast-growing healthcare business, and one which will continue to lead the way.
“We are looking forward to bringing our co-operative difference, as a consumer-owned organisation, to the communities served by our new pharmacies.”
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