Blueheath’s £3m acquisition of AC Ward & Son’s Thurrock HQ could catapult the online wholesaler to number 20 in The Grocer’s Big 30 league table.
The delivered wholesaler began the year at number 30 in the table and the move builds on the purchase of CTM Wholesale’s assets in April.
The latest acquisition gives Blueheath the leasehold on AC Ward’s assets at Thurrock in Essex but AC Ward Holdings will retain the freehold and keep the Sudbury C&C depot in Suffolk as a standalone business.
Blueheath CEO Douglas Gurr said the integration of Thurrock would take up to six months and would not discount further acquisitions in that period.
The Thurrock depot will be Blueheath’s second dedicated warehouse after buying the assets of CTM Wholesale.
Blueheath, which is already a Landmark member, has joined buying group Key Lekkerland, since AC Ward & Sons was a Key Lekkerland member. Gurr has joined Key Lekkerland’s board.
AC Ward is expected to announce annual sales of £55m. Blueheath’s interims to August 27, showed turnover up 53% to £52.3m.
>>p14 Movers and Shakers
Retailers would benefit from a national ID card scheme, Kevin Hawkins, director general of the British Retail Consortium, has said. “If there was one standard proof of age for the 18 to 21 age group, and there was a general requirement for that card to be carried, this would be very useful,” he said.

Morrisons has sold its last Safeway store in Northern Ireland. The store, which is in Downpatrick, has been bought by independents John and Helen Miskelly. Completion takes place on November 19, with all staff transferring to the new owners.

Tesco has boosted the number of magazines in its larger stores from 450 to 600 lines. The Periodical Publishers Association welcomed the move but warned that if the OFT advised that wholesalers’ exclusive territories should be opened up, Tesco’s move would put even more pressure on independent retailers.

Choosing food for health reasons has emerged as the fastest-growing motivator of consumption, said TNS. However, despite the number of meals chosen for healthy reasons rising 5% year-on-year to 20%, enjoyment (42%) is the main motivating factor.

Tate and Lyle’s half-year pre-tax profit rose 7% to £136m.on sales up from £1.665bn last year to £1.868bn this year. But it warned higher energy and transport costs would continue to hit profitability.

Which? has called for new food labelling laws after its investigation found that some brands of sliced and tinned ham contained only 50% meat. Ye Olde Oak ham contained 55% meat, 37% water and 8% additives, sugar and salt.
useful standard
safeway sold
magazine power
healthy choices
sweet profit
that’s a bit wet