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The Co-operative Group sells pharmacy business in £620 million deal

The Co-operative Group has announced the completion of the sale of its Pharmacy business to Bestway Group for £620 million.

Last month, the group reported a pretax loss of £9 million, compared to a pretax profit of £110 million at this point in 2013.

This follows the previous announcement on 18th July that The Co-operative had entered into an agreement to sell the Pharmacy business to Bestway, following a formal sale process.

The Co-operative has agreed to provide certain services to the Pharmacy business for up to 18 months, under a transitional services agreement, and Bestway will have the right to operate under The Co-operative Pharmacy brand for a transitional period of 12 months.

Last month, Richard Pennycook, group chief executive of The Co-operative Group, said: “2014 has marked a defining period for The Co-operative Group. We have delivered the changes we set out including fundamentally reforming our governance and we are developing clear plans to drive our success for the future.

“We took the tough decisions to re-shape our Group to ensure it is on a sustainable footing and the disposals of our Pharmacy, Farms and Sunwin Services businesses as part of this will repair our balance sheet. Our Group strategy is to build on our existing strengths as a convenience food retailer and to optimise the performance of our new Consumer Services Division, comprising of Funeralcare, General Insurance and Legal Services. We are now in a position to rebuild and restore the Group and can look to the future with greater confidence.”

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