from Shamus Lehel, Wootton Post Office, Londis, Beds

Sir; Now that even the new independent directors appointed by KPMG have reached the conclusion that Londis should be sold, we should all get geared up behind our company and push for the best deal. That is, the best deal for shopkeepers, company wise and payout wise.

Every other avenue has been explored, such as mutuality and floating, and been found wanting. Standing still in the glare of the headlights is no longer an option.

In December 2003 PALS (Preferred Alliance of Londis Shopkeepers) got together to scupper the old deal because we thought it was unfair, and not enough information had been communicated to the shareholders. We were not against a sale in principle.

That battle we believe has been fought and won. The new agenda now is to work in unity with all Londis shopkeepers and directors. The best way forward is a sale to a credible company, where terms and conditions, buying power, professionalism and disciplines are enhanced.

Yes, Londis is the best of all the symbol groups. It is also unique in that it owns its own distribution channels, it is not at the mercy of bigger wholesalers. Yet we are still struggling against the likes of Tesco Express and Sainsbury’s Local and will continue to do so unless we are pro-active now.

Londis retailers are all familiar with our slogan ‘Best value locally’. Well, if we refuse to change, in a couple of years time or sooner that slogan will sound like a joke.

At the moment Londis is negotiating from a position of strength, that may not always be the case.