Booker Group, the wholesaler, which is currently the subject of a planned merger with Tesco, said it had a “good” final quarter of its financial year to 24 March 2017.

Charles Wilson, chief executive, said: “Overall, 2016/17 was a good year. Customer satisfaction was good and sales were the best we have ever achieved. Booker Group remains on track to Focus, Drive and Broaden the business. On 27 January we announced the planned merger with Tesco. We are excited about the benefits the enlarged Group will bring to consumers, our customers, suppliers, colleagues and shareholders. The merger is going through the competition process. Meanwhile it is business as usual as we continue to improve choice, prices and service for our retail, catering and small business customers.”

The company reported that group non tobacco sales rose by 4.5% in the final quarter, with non tobacco like-for-likes up 4.7%.

Total sales were up 0.5% and like-for-likes were up 0.7%.

It said that both its Catering and Retail operations made “good progress”.

The company stated that non tobacco sales across its Premier business continued to grow.

For the 52 weeks to 24 March 2017, total sales were £5.3bn, up by 6.7% compared to last year. Like-for-like non-tobacco sales increased by 2.8%, but like-for-like tobacco sales declined by 4.6%. Like-for-like sales to caterers rose by 4.4%.

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