Channel Islands retailer Sandpiper has been forced to resubmit its application to buy 16 J Mart Costcutter stores on Jersey after the Channel Islands Competition and Regulatory Authorities (CICRA) threw out the original application, submitted last September.
CICRA advised Sandpiper, which runs its own chain of convenience stores and works in partnership on a franchise basis with a raft of retail brands, including Marks and Spencer (M&S) and Iceland, that its original application was unlikely to succeed.
The resubmitted application reduces the number of Costcutter stores in the acquisition proposal to 13. The excluded stores are in St Ouen, St John and Green Island.
CICRA chief executive Michael Byrne said the ruling was based on the fact the competition body had found risks consumers could be less well-served if the transaction went through in its original form.
Sandpiper had hoped to conclude the original deal by the end of November, but CICRA now plans to consider the new application with a view to completing a new “phase 1” review within five weeks.
Sandpiper operates 10 Icelands, six M&S’s, including three Simply Foods, 11 Food Halls – its own mini-supermarkets – and nine of its own Checkers Xpress convenience outlets.
It also operates Costa, Hotel Chocolat, The Cornish Bakery and The Bakery, among others.
It said at the time of the original deal announcement that it intended to convert the Costcutters to its other fascias.
No one from Sandpiper was available for comment.