Despite continuing woes throughout the sector, one retailer has announced a very strong trading performance over the Christmas period, with the Co-operative Group seeing a rise in like for like sales from 2010 up by more than three per cent.
There was further good news for the company too, with their online electrical sales enjoying a yearly 18.4 per cent increase over the four weeks to December 31.
The group executive for the company, Peter Marks, remarked that the results were encouraging, particularly in
“continuing difficult economic times.”
It was also revealed that the group had acquired Scottish food retailer David Sands.
The Kinross-based family firm has been trading independently for over 200 years, but was looking at challenging financial pressures threatening to undermine daily operations.
It is a situation which many companies in Scotland will be familiar with.
One major problem is securing financing, though many are finding that working with Scottish factoring companies can provide essential funds for sustainability.
Further than this though, it can also help take advantage of growth opportunities, as can be seen here with the acquisition by The Co-op.
The deal still needs to be rubber-stamped by the Office of Fair Trading, but should be completed by the start of the second quarter.
Once confirmed, the buyout should see around 700 jobs in Fife, Kinross and Perthshire safeguarded.
Expansion in Scotland is a key part of the group’s plans to open 300 new stores throughout the UK in the next three years. More particularly though, it is a move aimed at strengthening Co-op’s position in Scotland, and add to its existing portfolio of stores.