The three-Way merger between Jersey based Le Riche Group, Ann Street and CI Traders has been approved and declared “unconditional in all respects”.

Both Le Riche and Ann Street will today apply for cancellation of the trading of their shares while CI Traders shares are expected to be admitted to trading on AIM later today.

The merger will create a major new force in Channel Islands grocery. The combined operation will run 41 food stores in Jersey and Guernsey plus related businesses including food wholesale, pubs, hotels, baking and brewing.

Le Riche's stores md Kevin Keen said Ann Street's Island Shopper c-stores would add scale to the food retail operation, while the merger would also create "substantial synergies in business operations and property management".