The Co-op Group has announced the fastest growth in its food business in seven years, and a 4.4% rise in like-for-like food sales, following the acquisition of Nisa last year.


The group said total revenue grew by 14.2% to £10.2bn in 2018, driven by the Nisa acquisition and a strong performance from its food stores.

Pre-tax profit increased by 27% to £93m, with overall profitability “exceeding expectations”.

Co-op chief executive Steve Murrells said the acquisition and integration of the Nisa wholesale business had been a “game changer” in expanding the group’s food footprint.

“Over the past year we have continued to successfully transform the Co-op, leading to a 14% increase in revenues to £10.2bn and the return of £60m directly to our members and £19m to over 4,000 community projects across the UK,” he commented.

In 2018 the Co-op invested £75m in opening more than 100 new food stores and refitting 138 existing stores.