Booker’s managing director of retail, Steve Fox, has assured retailers they will benefit from the “£2.5bn growth opportunity” of the wholesaler’s merger with Tesco.
Speaking at the Retailer Hub live event at the National Convenience Show last week, Fox said stores would benefit from better pricing and gain access to Tesco products, as well as services such as click & collect.
“We can move faster and more nimbly by merging with Tesco,” he said. “Booker and Tesco will run separately, but if there’s synergies, we’ll take them. We wouldn’t have progressed with the merger if it didn’t bring opportunities for growth.”
He also pledged to retailers in the audience that Easter would be much cheaper next year. “As a group we’ll buy Easter and Christmas together. You’ll definitely see a better Easter offer next year, and hopefully for Christmas too.”
Sheffield-based Premier retailer Mandeep Singh said he had already seen short-term benefits of the merger, with access to larger pack sizes and some “great promotions” on multi-packs of beers.
In the longer term, Mandeep said he wanted to tap into Tesco products, banking and the Tesco clubcard. “We have shoppers who are loyal to Tesco, so we want to tap into that traffic,” he said.
Booker’s merger with Tesco completed in early March after both companies’ shareholders backed the deal. The Competition and Markets Authority cleared the deal in December 2017.