The government's competition watchdog, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), gave the green light to the planned takeover of Sainsbury’s pharmacy business under the condition that Lloydspharmacy sells branches in 12 areas of England and Wales to prevent a "substantial lessening of competition” for patients.
Parent company Celesio UK confirmed that two additional sites had been added to the list of 12 on August 11.
Day Lewis head of commercial development Tim Harrington told C+D last week (August 19) that the chain will decide “at a later point” whether to bid for all, or only a few, of the branches.
Possible bidding war
Mr Harrington said last week that he is aware the branches have already attracted a “tremendous amount of interest”. “That is likely to fuel high prices,” he told C+D.
Day Lewis has spent the last couple of years expanding its portfolio across the country, Mr Harrington said.
Because of the geographic spread of the Lloydspharmacy branches up for sale, “it certainly looks to some extent that these pharmacies help us with this [ongoing] objective”, he added.
If Day Lewis does purchase any branches, it will have to follow conditions set out by the CMA, which is forcing Lloydspharmacy to sell the branches, Mr Harrington pointed out.
The 14 confirmed sites up for sale are:
- Market Square, Sandy (two pharmacies)
- Rice Lane, Liverpool
- Bramingham Park Centre, Luton
- The Highway, Beaconsfield
- Saxon Centre, Kempston
- The Green, Warlingham
- Garden City, Kidlington
- Lymington Road, Highcliffe, Christchurch (two pharmacies)
- The Avenue, Alwoodley, Leeds
- Birch Hill, Bracknell
- High Street, Theale
- Station Road, Llanishen, Cardiff