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Scottish chain closes in on 51st branch and £60m in sales

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Scottish chain closes in on 51st branch and £60m in sales

A Scottish pharmacy chain is on the verge of acquiring its 51st branch, according to reports.

Davidsons Chemists is expected to complete the purchase of St Mary’s Pharmacy in St Giles Terrace, Dundee, today as the group expands its portfolio of pharmacies and sets out a sales target of £60 million having reached turnover of £50 million in the 12 months to January 2022.

Davidsons Chemists’ managing director Allan Gordon told The Courier Evening Telegraph the chain is looking to make more acquisitions and could be rebranded as Davidsons in the new year.

“My aspirations for the short-term are to continue to grow the group. We are always looking to expand our chain,” he told the newspaper, adding the chain is aiming to have 60 pharmacies by 2024.

“We’re in discussions with a number of small groups across Scotland. There are now only a very small number of independent pharmacies in Tayside.”

Its latest accounts reveal its sales increased from 46.8 million last year to £52.8 million in the year to January 2022, although its pre-tax profits fell from £5.5 million to £4.9 million. The chain has 471 employees.

In December last year, the chain bought six pharmacies, one in Renfrewshire and five in Ayrshire, for a seven-figure sum, swelling its staff to 550 and taking its number of branches in Scotland to 50 in the process.

Echoing concerns over a pharmacy workforce crisis in England, Mr Gordon also told The Courier Evening Telegraph that pharmacists retiring as well as those taking early retirement, coupled with a strong recruitment programme by GP surgeries, has created a shortage of pharmacists in Scotland.

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