Co-operative Group in talks to sell security arm in shake up

The Co-operative Group sells Sunwin Services Group

It has been reported that the Co-operative Group is in talks to sell Sunwin Services Group, provider of security, IT and other functions to the Group’s retail arm. In a bid to shore up the Co-operatives financial losses it’s understood that the security provider, which employs around 1,500 people, could be sold off in a matter of weeks for a deal worth tens of millions of pounds.

It’s believed that the Co-op is in discussions with Cardtronics, a group that describes itself as the world’s largest non-bank operator of cash machines.

A spokesperson for Sunwin Services Group told SecurityNewsDesk, “We can confirm that we are in exclusive talks over the sale of Sunwin Services Group which may or may not lead to the sale of the business.  As part our ambitious programme of transforming and modernising The Co-operative Group we have concluded that Sunwin is non-core as a non-member facing business.”

Sunwin Services Group provides support for staff as they transfer cash around the Co-op network, although the business has its roots in the mutual’s TV rental and repair business, which was founded in 1954. It now offers other services, including in areas such as IT and the installation and monitoring of fire and burglar alarm systems.

News of these exclusive talks with Cardtronics came to light less than two weeks after the Co-op sold its pharmacies division to Bestway, the cash-and-carry-operator for £620m. The need to drastically redress the Co-op’s portfolio was triggered by the crisis at its banking arm, which had to be bailed out by hedge funds after the emergence of a £1.5bn capital deficit.

 

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