Over 800 jobs lost as 34 Budgens stores close

By Michael Stones

- Last updated on GMT

More than 100 Budgens stores are to remain open
More than 100 Budgens stores are to remain open

Related tags Somerfield

More than 800 jobs at a chain of 34 Budgens stores are to be lost, after its owner Food Retailer Operations Ltd (FROL) failed to find a buyer.

FROL was put into administration last month, as a buyer was sought for the 34 stores located throughout England, Wales and Scotland.

Earlier this week FROL administrator PWC confirmed no buyer had been been found and that the leases of the premises concerned would be sold.

‘Not commercially viable’

Joint administrator Mike Denny said in a statement: “Unfortunately, we have been unable to find a buyer and it is not commercially viable to continue trading the stores.

“We are working closely with the Co-op,​ [the union] USDAW and the relevant government agencies to ensure that all employees receive the maximum levels of practical and financial support through the redundancy process.” 

The affected Budgens stores – which sold a wide range of products including confectionery, crisps and beverages – were bought from the Co-op last year.

Bought from the Co-op

FROL operated 34 convenience stores across the UK, which traded under the Budgens brand and employed 815 people.

It also held the leasehold interests in a further 36 non-trading stores, two non-trading properties and the head office of the former Somerfield business.

Meanwhile, the decision leaves more than 100 other stores in the Budgens chain unaffected.

Food wholesale giant Booker bought the Budgens and Londis​ brands for £40M in May last year.

In January this year Booker and Tesco agreed a £3.7bn takeover deal​. 

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