Even more rumours

A Costcutter/Bestway deal could have a major impact on other wholesalers

THE big game of convenience industry musical chairs continues, with rumours now around a potential deal between Bestway and Costcutter that would see the wholesaler enter into a supply deal with the symbol group.

The rumours circulating around a Bestway deal with Costcutter follow a letter from the symbol group’s MD Michael Bibby in August informing retailers that a formal announcement was on the horizon with “exciting opportunities on the table”.

As Scottish Grocer went to press, Costcutter had not confirmed or denied the existence of talks over a supply deal with Bestway.

Should Bestway enter into a supply agreement with Costcutter it is believed the symbol group would drop its ties with current wholesaler Palmer & Harvey, which could further exacerbate P&H’s ongoing financial troubles.

Founded in 1925, P&H has been on the brink of collapse for much of 2017, with the wholesaler having refinanced the business in March 2016 through a banking syndicate comprising Barclays, HSBC, RBS, PNC, Santander and GE Capital, before seeking further outside finance to pay off debts this year.