Morrisons to close 11 supermarkets and sell M stores as profits plummet

Morrisons to close 11 supermarkets and sell M stores as profits plummet

Morrisons is to close 11 of its supermarkets and will also sell 140 M local convenience stores for a consideration of around £25m to a team led by retail entrepreneur Mike Greene and backed by Greybull Capital LLP.

Morrisons will retain five M local stores, which are either on forecourts or will be converted to small Morrisons supermarkets.

The location of the 11 supermarkets is yet to be disclosed.

In March 2015, Morrisons announced a review of the M local business. That review concluded that M local would have required significant further investment in new sites, plus additional capital expenditure and lease commitments, to reach profitability. In the board’s opinion, today’s sale announcement represents the best solution for Morrisons and will enable future Morrisons investment to be focused on core supermarkets.

Morrisons says it expects to incur a loss on disposal of around £30m.

David Potts, Morrisons CEO, said: “Convenience is a large and growing channel in UK food retailing. Morrisons learnt much from its entry into the market, but M local was unable to scale. However, we remain open to other opportunities in convenience in the future. I would like to thank all the Morrisons colleagues for their hard work and dedication to M local.”

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