Scotmid Co-op ‘is in good health’

Retiring chief says investment will continue as he reveals society’s annual results for the last time

The impressively fitted-out Scotmid Heartlands store that opened in Whitburn last year.
The impressively fitted-out Scotmid Heartlands store that opened in Whitburn last year.

SCOTMID Co-op’s c-stores will continue to see investments in upgrades, chief exec John Brodie has promised as he prepares to hand over to CEO designate Karen Scott in August.

He was speaking after the society revealed strong annual results for his final full year in charge – having been at the helm for 20 years.

Scotmid delivered a trading profit of £4.3million for the 52 weeks to 27 January 2024 – up £1.3million on 2023, mostly due to central cost savings.

Total society turnover increased by £18.5million to £425million, while a strong balance sheet showed net assets of £120.8million.

Looking to the future, Brodie said Scotmid would continue to invest in the likes of refrigeration, food to go and technology to make stores more sustainable and improve profits.

Retiring Scotmid Co-op chief executive John Brodie.
Retiring Scotmid Co-op chief executive John Brodie.

He said the society would also continue to look at new store opportunities.

The pledges came as he admitted the cost-of-living crisis, high interest rates and inflation had all dented consumer confidence and spending last year, while the food retail division faced significant cost challenges across areas such as energy and wages.

But Scotmid had implemented initiatives to drive growth, enhance operational efficiency and make savings, with electronic shelf edge label investment helping. As a result, customer numbers rose and the division moved ahead year on year.

Other major positive projects included the opening of the state-of-the-art Heartlands store in Whitburn, continuing sustainable refrigeration upgrades, food to go refreshes in seven stores and completing the rollout of hybrid tobacco gantries across the shop estate.

Solar panels were also installed at the Bo’ness store, Scotmid’s digital offering grew with more Snappy Shopper hubs and listing Scottish products continued to be a focus.

Importantly, the society’s charitable efforts continued apace, with £295,000 raised for charity partner Guide Dogs and £168,000 shared between 24 good causes by the Community Connect scheme.

Urging Scotmid retailers to carry on their great work and thanking everyone, Brodie said: “I’m pleased to leave the society in excellent health. I wish Karen and colleagues all the best and every success for the future.”