Palmer and Harvey (P&H), the UK’s biggest delivered wholesaler, and Costcutter Supermarkets Group (CSG) today announced plans to close The BuyCo, the 50/50 jointly owned company set up by both businesses back in 2013.
The BuyCo was created in order to negotiate and serve the buying needs of P&H’s retail customer base, as well as those of the Costcutter Supermarkets Group.
But P&H said “the changing nature of today’s market” meant that further benefits The BuyCo could bring to the two companies were “limited” and it will now take the function back in house. MD Martyn Ward told Wholesale News that suppliers had said that dealing with The BuyCo added unnecessary complexity to their investment.
He said: “BuyCo was set up as a joint venture to harmonise negotiating terms across our supplier base.
“Now that that’s been achieved, the negotiating and buying functions of The BuyCo are being brought back in house. This announcement does not affect our supply agreement with Costcutter Supermarkets Group, they will continue to be a valued P&H customer.”
CSG chief executive Darcy Willson-Rymer aded: “The market and our own capabilities have evolved considerably over the past four years meaning it is now the right time to adapt our business and the way we operate to reflect the market changes we are all seeing.
“Our retailers will still benefit from the value from volume our partnership with P&H delivers and our trading team will ensure we continue to have strong relationships with our suppliers.”
A full report on this story, including comment from Martyn Ward, will appear in the April issue of Wholesale News, out next week.