The Co-operative Group has snapped up seven stores operated by Musgrave GB operator Kash Jaffar.

The five Budgens and two Londis outlets, bought for an undisclosed price, will reopen as The Co-op food stores no later than Friday.

Three of the Budgens are in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, and the others are in Luton, Bedfordshire and Brackley, Northamptonshire. The Londis outlets are in Milton Keynes, and in Sandy, Bedfordshire.

The Co-op’s acquisition fits in with its plans to open 100 new c-stores a year across the UK.

Stuart Hookins, director of portfolio and development at The Co-op Group, said: “This transaction further underlines our commitment to our new store development programme…and look forward to extending our customer base in central England. 

“Our focus is on convenience stores as we look to highlight our strengths and consolidate our position as number one in the competitive convenience market,” he said.

Peter Ridler, managing director of Musgrave GB, said Jaffar, who has been a Budgens retailer for more than 10 years, had decided this was the right time to sell some of his shops to enable him to focus on his three Budgens stores in the Milton Keynes area.

“Kash has a strong reputation in Milton Keynes and we are pleased that he will continue to be a Budgens retail partner,” Ridler said.