Monday, May 29, 2023

Co-op enjoys solid trading year with overall sales at £399m

Community retailer Lincolnshire Co-op has had a solid trading year, with overall sales up 12% to £399m, and a return to pre-pandemic performance from its travel agencies.

It means the society’s members will share in a dividend bonus of £1.6m which will be paid onto dividend cards on Saturday 26th November, in addition to £1.9m already paid during the financial year.

Sales in travel shot up, showing growth on pre-pandemic trading years. Almost a quarter of clients have booked with the society’s travel branches for the first time with many wanting the support and security of using a travel agent after the disruption caused by Covid-19.

Food sales steadied, maintaining the strong performance of recent years. The Love Local range, supporting producers from across the trading area, recorded sales of £4.8m, a welcome boost to those local businesses.

In pharmacies, prescription items dispensed were up 3 per cent, totalling 5.9 million items.

The teams provide a wide range of community health services too. 16,302 patients were guided through the use of their medication as part of the New Medicines Service (NMS). Over 25,000 jabs were administered at the society’s Covid vaccination sites in Lincoln and Boston and 13,040 flu vaccines were delivered in branch and at community-based clinics.

Funeral branches helped families with 2,772 funeral arrangements in the year. Post offices continued to provide valued services for communities, with banking services proving particularly useful in rural areas.

New food stores opened in Retford and Barnetby during 2022 and construction is taking place at a further five food store sites, due to open in 2023.

Colleagues received two profit share bonuses totalling almost an extra week’s wages.

The society’s overall sales were up 12% to £399m.Trading surplus, though down by 9.1%, remained healthy at £16.6m. Rising costs – including energy and food distribution – had an impact during the year and will continue to present challenges over the next trading period.

Lincolnshire Co-op supports good causes in a range of different ways, including through its Community Champions scheme which sees a donation given to a good cause every time a member shops using their dividend card. A total of 496 groups and charities shared £680,776 raised this year.

Collection points for local food banks and community larders are in all food stores and two targeted campaigns in the year encouraged people to give specific goods needed at that time, as well as contributing by donating dividend.

Colleagues have two paid days of volunteering annually and gave 1,319 hours to the community this year though projects as diverse as planting trees, revamping local war memorials and supporting local school children with careers advice.

The society has registered with the internationally-recognised Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) showing it is committed to setting targets to reduce emissions, including from gas, electricity, vehicle use and refrigeration, as well as within the supply chain.

CEO Ursula Lidbetter said: “After two years where the pandemic dominated, we have seen a return to a more typical trading year. The travel industry was hit hard by the pandemic and recovery this year has been gratifying to see.

“There have been challenges too. Rising costs, the tough economic climate and social issues will continue to test us for the foreseeable future.

“But thanks to the commitment of our colleagues and the support of members and customers, as well as by using our resources wisely, we will continue to invest in our services and support our communities.”

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our news site - please take a moment to read this important message:

As you know, our aim is to bring you, the reader, an editorially led news site and magazine but journalism costs money and we rely on advertising, print and digital revenues to help to support them.

With the Covid-19 pandemichaving a major impact on our industry as a whole, the advertising revenues we normally receive, which helps us cover the cost of our journalists and this website, have been drastically affected.

As such we need your help. If you can support our news sites/magazines with either a small donation of even £1, or a subscription to our magazine, which costs just £31.50 per year, (inc p&P and mailed direct to your door) your generosity will help us weather the storm and continue in our quest to deliver quality journalism.

As a subscriber, you will have unlimited access to our web site and magazine. You'll also be offered VIP invitations to our events, preferential rates to all our awards and get access to exclusive newsletters and content.

Just click here to subscribe and in the meantime may I wish you the very best.

Latest news

Related news

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.