Watchdog could force Asda and Sainsbury’s to shut 75 stores after £12bn merger

At least 75 Asda stores could close following the merger with Sainsbury’s, according to GlobalData.

There are almost 300 branches of Asda that have at least one Sainsbury’s in the same postcode area.

Mirror analysis has shown there are 298 Asdas around Britain that have a Sainsbury’s in the same postcode area (such as B14 in Birmingham or E1 in east London).

In Wakefield, West Yorks, there are an Asda and a Sainsbury’s in the same shopping centre.

And in towns around the country they have one of each supermarket, including Hinckley, Leics; Grantham, Lincs; Great Yarmouth, Norfolk and Stockport, Greater Manchester.

These include all kinds of the two supermarkets – from their larger superstores to petrol stations and Sainsbury’s Locals.

In many cases though two superstores share the same postcode area.

In Leeds, where Asda’s headquarters is located, there is an Asda in Beeston in LS11, as well as a petrol station, and a Sainsbury’s at the White Rose Shopping Centre in the same postcode area.

The merger would create Britain’s largest supermarket chain, employing 330,000 people and representing a 31 per cent market share.

Sainsbury’s said in a statement that there were no planned Asda or Sainsbury’s store closures but the Competition and Markets Authority said it was likely to review the merger.

Patrick O’Brien, retail research director at GlobalData, said: "While there are no plans to close any stores at this time, regulators will be looking to see how many Asda stores are in close proximity to Sainsbury’s stores.

"Seventy-five Asda stores have a Sainsbury’s (excluding Locals) in the same sector.

"We think these 75 stores would be the absolute minimum that the CMA will want disposed of."

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