Stokes plc, which is the largest independent greengrocer in the UK, has gone into administration. The company employs 277 people across the UK. KPMG have made 65 people redundant across 10 stores. Richard Hill, partner at administrators KPMG, said: "Unfortunately, declining sales in some stores have resulted in losses being incurred." The affected stores include Bath, Exeter, Abergavenny, Falmouth and Sherborne. The administrators are looking for a buyer for the business, as a going concern, and they said they have already received expressions of interest.
Competition from the big stores has always been a problem for smaller independent grocers. In order to survive they need to offer something different. No doubt with people worrying about their jobs, especially in the public sector, there will be further pressure on retailers.
We have rescued retailers before. Please see our page on retailer rescue.