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Competition authority OKs sale of Stockmann's upscale delicatessen stores

Finnish competition authorities have approved the sale of department store chain Stockmann's in-house delicatessen stores to one of its competitors in the food business, S-Group.

Stockmann grocery department at its location in Tapiola, Espoo. Image: Kenneth Luoto / Stockmann

Management and ownership of the grocery stores at Stockmann's flagship outlets is changing hands.

On Friday the Competition and Consumer Authority approved the sale of Stockmann's upscale grocery shops in Finland to the retailer S-Group's cooperatives and umbrella co-op group SOK, the Central Finnish Cooperative Society.

One condition of the deal is for the delicatessens to continue procuring goods from Tuko Logistics until the end of 2018. Stockmann owns 10 percent of Tuko Logistics.

The first announcement about the sale of Stockmann's grocery stores was made last summer. The grocery stores employ some 700 people and are scheduled to continue under the new owners.

Stockmann's grocery stores will be operated by S-Group starting on 3 January 2018. The stores in question are located inside Stockmann's department stores.

S-Group said the newly-acquired stores will become their flagship grocery outlets.

SOK field director Arttu Laine said that after ownership changes, the stores will start off largely the same as they were, but said broader changes would begin to take place in the autumn including lower prices.

Laine said that many suggestions about ways to develop the stores have come in from members of the public.

Stockmann said that 700 employees working at the delicatessens will transfer to S-Group as existing personnel.