Musgrave, the retail and wholesaling group that owns SuperValu and Centra, trebled its operating profits last year in Northern Ireland.
Accounts filed this month by Musgrave Retail Partners NI, the group’s operating company for north of the Border, reveal that turnover at the unit rose by almost 4 per cent to £271 million. The division’s operating profits rose to £1.6 million.
Musgrave employs about 625 staff in the North, according to notes attached to the accounts. Staff numbers rose by almost a third after a tranche of workers working in its logistics department moved back in-house after previously being employed by an outside contractor.
The group operates or supplies 36 SuperValu stores in the North, as well as 83 Centra outlets. It also has 105 Mace stores in its network in Northern Ireland, as well as 90 Day Today outlets.
The accounts suggest that about 80 per cent of Musgrave’s turnover in Northern Ireland comes from its wholesaling division, which supplies independently-owned stores that operate under its franchise symbols. The remainder of its turnover is generated by group-operated retail stores.
Musgrave has set up a Brexit project management team, according to the NI unit directors' report. Chris Martin, the group chief executive, has previously said Musgrave may look to hold larger stocks in the Republic of goods imported via the UK, but this is unlikely to require it to invest in more warehousing facilities.
The wider Musgrave group, including its operations in the Republic and Spain, has annual sales of about €3.7 billion.