There should be a moratorium on further takeovers of existing chains either by Tesco, or any of the other three largest multiple retailers.
The major supermarket chains, particularly Tesco and Sainsbury's, have expanded into the convenience store sector and as well as building their own stores, they have been expanding through takeovers of smaller chains.
In 2002, Tesco was allowed to take over the T&S chain of convenience stores, giving it the 850 T&S convnenience stores trading as "One Stop" and "Day & Nite," as well as 350 T&S confectionary and newsagent stores (see OFT assessment). By 2006, Tesco had converted 700 of these stores into its Tesco Express format, and still had 500 T&S branded stores.
In March 2004, Tesco was cleared by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) to buy the Adminstore convenience store chain giving it a further 45 new stores in London. (See the OFT news release)
In March 2004, Sainsbury's took over the Bells chain with 50 stores.
In October 2004, Sainsbury's purchased the Jacksons regional chain of 114 stores in Yorkshire and the North Midlands, increasing its convenience store portfolio to 250 (see OFT decision)
In September 2005, Tesco purchased 21 petrol stations from Wm Morrison (see Guardian story)
In July 2008, the Co-op announced it's takeover of Somerfield. In October the OFT gave the go-ahead for the takeover but stated that the Co-op would have to divest 126 stores to address competition concerns in some local grocery markets.
In May 2010, Asda announced it is buying 193 Netto stores in the UK at a cost of £778m (see Guardian story)