The Grocer revealed two weeks ago that exclusive discussions with one party were under way for more than 150 stores not sold to Thresher Group in December (‘Going, going …’, The Grocer, January 21, p7). Other bidders were frozen out while the bid was considered. However, talks have fallen through, sparking renewed rumours of a bid solely for the upmarket Phillips Newman stores.
Former Unwins owner DM Private Equity continues to be linked with a bid for some stores. Other parties rumoured to be interested include wholesaler Whittalls Wines and Wine Cellar.