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Last Updated: Tuesday, 22 August 2006, 17:20 GMT 18:20 UK
Bosses back Co-op merger proposal
A branch of one of most familiar firms in the East Midlands may cease to exist after it entered into merger talks.

Bosses at the Derbyshire-based Ilkeston Co-op have backed plans to merge with the Midlands Co-op in November.

The company runs 42 travel agencies in the UK and also operates a department store, two bedding stores, a banqueting suite and two car body shops.

The board said the name was likely survive on the High Street and the move would help safeguard its 800 jobs.

Current chief executive Tony Teatum said it was the end of an era for the firm which started in 1887.

He said: "It's inevitable that the larger buying power and the economies of scale it will bring will come to bring the movement together so it can compete with the likes of Tesco.

"That is what is needed because that tends to be the threat to a lot of the local Co-ops that are on the street now."


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