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Beales completes acquisition of 19 co-op stores

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Department store chain J E Beale has completed the purchase of 19 outlets previously owned by Anglia Regional Co-operative Society (ARCS), it was confirmed today.

The deal, worth £7.5 million, was completed yesterday and Beales’ shares will now be cancelled and readmitted to listing on the London Stock Exchange at 08:00 BST on May 24th 2011.

Beales has taken control of the former ARCS stores in Abingdon, Beccles, Bishop Auckland, Chipping Norton, Cinderford, Diss, Harrogate, Keighley, King’s Lynn, Lowestoft, Mansfield, Peterborough, Redcar, Saffron Waldren, Skegness, Skipton, Spalding, St Neots and Wisbech.

A statement on the Beales website read: “Combining the respective store portfolios into one enlarged group, makes strong commercial sense for both businesses and secures a substantial amount of local employment.

“At Beales we place customer loyalty at the heart of our business, which is why we are pleased to be able to maintain and honour the Divi at the Westgate stores.”

Established more than 100 years ago, Beales is a member of the Associated Independent Stores and has been slowing growing its store portfolio over the last decade with purchases of former Allders, Bentalls, Robbs and ARCS outlets.

It was confirmed in April when the deal was proposed that Beales intended to retain most of the staff employed at the affected stores, and major refurbishment work will now take place at the acquired properties.

The company statement continued: “Over the next few months there will be a number of changes in and around the new stores, hopefully you’ll agree they will be for the better.

“With great shopping, quality dining and the ultimate customer service, the Beales family will continue to proudly provide the complete department store experience.”

Published on Monday 23 May by Editorial Assistant

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