Supermarket chain Booths hunts for a buyer

Family-run supermarket chain Booths has reportedly been put up for sale.

The upmarket chain, which has been owned by the same family for five generations, has 28 stores across the north of England.

The company, led by its chief executive Edwin Booth, has brought in advisors from investment bank Rothschild, to consider takeover bids, according to reports. The film is being put up for sale for between £130m and £150m.

The business, which is often dubbed “Waitrose of the North”, has reported difficult trading conditions over the past few years, and it made an annual loss in the 12 months to the end of March 2016. The company said it was hit badly by Storm Desmond in December 2015, while it had to cut 100 jobs in the same year as part of a cost-cutting drive.

In a statement the company said: “Booths has been retailing for over 170 years and it remains a very strong resilient and well-loved brand.

“One of our strengths has been our ability to adapt to changing market conditions and naturally, we always keep our strategic options open.”

The first Booths store opened in Blackpool in 1847. The company now has stores in locations such as Keswick, Kendal, Kirkby, Lonsdale, Ulverston and Windermere. 

The family holds 96% of the company’s shares with the remainder owned by its staff.

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