Sainsbury’s acquisition of 18 former Total-branded petrol stations from Rontec has been cleared by the Office of Fair Trading.

The deal will expand the supermarket’s forecourt network to 284 sites.

There is no confirmed timetable for the transfer of sites, but all existing staff will have the opportunity to transfer to Sainsbury’s employment.

The group is currently considering how the sites will be used and will submit planning applications for any proposed changes, including new pumps and signage.

Phillip Bell-Brown, Sainsbury’s director of property development, said, “The OFT approval is welcome news. The acquisitions provide a unique opportunity to support our plans for growth and to extend the reach of the Sainsbury’s brand, bringing the associated benefits of new job opportunities for local people. We are looking forward to welcoming our new colleagues to Sainsbury’s.”

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>> Rontec to sell 18 sites to Sainsbury’s