The Farmer Charlies store in Lismore.
The Farmer Charlies store in Lismore.

Buyers lining up to bid on food outlets

A NUMBER of offers have been received for the three Farmer Charlies stores on the North Coast, which went into receivership last month.

On October 2, Deloitte was appointed as receivers and managers for the stores at Ballina, Lismore and Evans Head.

Advertising for expressions of interest started last weekend.

It is understood the stores can be bought together or separately.

However, the grocery stores must be sold in order to keep the doors open, and to ensure that employees – there are more than 100 workers across the three stores – do not lose their jobs.

Deloitte partner David Lombe yesterday confirmed there had been ‘strong interest’ in the stores.

“We have received a number of offers, which we are now in the process of reviewing,” he said.

“We are hopeful that the business will be sold so that local employees are able to retain their jobs.”

Expressions of interest close on Thursday.

According to advertisements in The Northern Star, the three stores generate more than $14.8 million a year.

There are 24 full-time staff members, 11 part-time and 70 casual staff.

For now, the stores will remain open and will operate on a ‘business as usual’ basis.

Mr Lombe said that as the receivers Deloitte wanted to ‘preserve the long-term viability’ of Farmer Charlies.

The financial position of the stores is currently being reviewed by a team from Deloitte.

Deloitte has so far declined to give the reason for the stores going into receivership, and Farmer Charlies’ general manager Simon Burgess has not commented on the situation.

DO YOU SHOP AT FARMER CHARLIES?

Phone 6624 3266 or SMS 0428 264 948



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