EDINBURGH-based co-operative Scotmid and Penrith Co-operative in the most north-western region of England have agreed to merge the two societies subject to member approval in both organisations.
The next stage of the merger process will see the sharing of information. The boards of the two societies expect the merger, if approved, to be competed in the autumn of this year.
Scotmid is by far the bigger of the two societies with around 350 stores in food and home and beauty categories as well as funeral and property businesses.
Penrith Co-operative includes nine food stores and a furniture store.