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Well buys Devon pharmacy chain

Well CEO John Nuttall says the multiple shares the same “vision and values” as the Care4u chain

John Nuttall, CEO of the re-branded Co-operative Pharmacy, says the seven branch chain it has bought already provides "excellent customer service"

Well has bought a seven-branch pharmacy chain in south Devon as part of its £200 million expansion plan.

The newly rebranded multiple, formerly the Co-operative Pharmacy, officially took ownership of Care4u Pharmacy Ltd at the end of February for an undisclosed sum, it announced on Tuesday (March 17).

Well said the acquisition was part of its five-year plan to expand the business, announced by owners Bestway when it changed the multiple’s name in February.

Well said the pharmacies would continue to operate under the Care4u brand “in the interim”, but would be refurbished and rebranded under the Well name within the next 12 months. The multiple stressed that none of the branches, which employ a total of 70 people, were at risk of closure.

Well CEO John Nuttall said the multiple shared the same “vision and values” as Care4u. “They are a highly respected pharmacy chain within the south Devon community, known for [their] passion for providing excellent customer service,” he explained.

“We share that passion at Well and pride ourselves on providing personalised healthcare and wellbeing in the heart of our local communities,” Mr Nuttall added.

The former directors of Care4u – Kevin Muckian, Mark Healey and Martin Frankland – echoed the comments. “Care4u is a very special business and it was a very difficult decision for us to sell, but it was important to us that we were handing the business over to a company that we could trust and that shares our values,” they said.

Well reaffirmed its aim to increase its annual revenues from £750m to £1 billion by 2019.

In December, Bestway told C+D it planned to add more pharmacies to the chain if it could secure funding.


What do you think about Well's expansion plans?

We want to hear your views, but please express them in the spirit of a constructive, professional debate. For more information about what this means, please click here to see our community principles and information


John Schofield, Locum pharmacist

The logic and for that matter the fairness (in a legal sense) of restricting contract entries and not restricting graduates escapes me and I just hope that sooner or later OFT will be allowed another enquiry.

R A, Community pharmacist

They really should limit the expansion of large chains and force them to sell their branches all three multiples are far too big for a sector to have healthy competition!

N O, Pharmaceutical Adviser

If this is the same chain of companies as in then, --------- as per the latest NHSBSA figures (November'14) these seven branches totalled around 60,000 items for November with 6 of them over 8000 mark and just 1 around 3400. It is obvious they would not close any branch, but there is no comment on how many would still retain their jobs (and rates for Pharmacists) down the line (12 months). With these figures in mind, I'm sure any one involved in buying/ selling a Pharmacy could guess the ""Undisclosed Sum"". In any case well done WELL and all the best for the future. A MESSAGE TO ALL CORPORATES AND SMALL CHAINS --- Please leave some Pharmacies for independent Pharmacists, otherwise the sector faces extinction in the era of Hub & Spoke !!!

London Locum, Locum pharmacist

Corporates do not care. Extinction of Pharmacists is their AIM.

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