The Co-operative Group has bought DAB Stores, the garage forecourt and supermarket business in Minsterley, Shropshire in a deal worth in the region of £1.6 million, in a further signal of its intent to make significant store acquisitions.

Business agents Christie & Co sold the business on behalf of the vendor following a limited and confidential marketing campaign.

The acquisition is part of The Co-operative’s strategy to purchase 300 stores in three years and will give Co-operative Food a significant market presence in Shropshire – adding to stores in the neighbouring village of Pontesbury and the nearby town of Bishop’s Castle, according to Peter Rowley, The Co-operative’s regional operations director for the North West and North Midlands.

He said: “At a time when consumers are looking for both value and values in business, the Co-operative has become even more relevant and distinctive. We will meet all the community’s daily food shopping needs and, in the best traditions of The Co-operative, make our contribution to community life.”

Matthew Grace, associate director of Christie & Co, said: “This was a good deal for both parties as it enabled our vendors to realise good market value whilet retaining confidentiality. It also bolsters The Co-operative Group’s strategy for acquisition while sending a message of confidence to the wider retail sector.”