2015 has seen continued appetite across the pharmacy sector resulting record activity for the Christie + Co Pharmacy team, the UK’s largest specialist firm of pharmacy agents, valuers and surveyors. In the last year alone the team has valued, appraised or sold pharmacies with a combined value in excess of £170 million.
The Christie + Co team have experienced demand for all pharmacy types from ESPS pharmacies through to high dispensing volume health centre pharmacies; appetite has not been restricted to just individual pharmacy sales. Demand has largely been driven by an increase in the number of first time buyers, with over 4,000 applicants registered nationally and demand continues to far outweigh the supply of pharmacies offered for sale. First time buyers and new entrants to the market continue to dominate at 79%, albeit existing operators still account for 21% of those looking nationally. The effect is that when a pharmacy does come to the market on average the team receives eight offers. The competitive tension this generates drives the eventual values achieved to 111% of the initial guide prices quoted.
Of particular interest this year has been Lloydspharmacy’s announcement to acquire J Sainsbury’s 215 strong in-store pharmacy estate. The deal is subject to Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) review although it is expected to complete in early 2016.
Whilst this is the largest sale reported this year, Christie + Co has also undertaken a number of multiple disposals to include the sale of Medicx Pharmacy Limited’s estate of 21 pharmacies, the four pharmacy estate of GlobalHour Limited as well as JS Chemists Limited in Poole, Dorset. With other exciting group deals in the pipeline we expect to announce further sales before the year end.
Tony Evans Director of Pharmacy at Christie + Co comments; “2015 has been a very positive and busy year for our team, with more opportunities coming to market being snapped up through an increasing purchaser appetite. With little on the horizon set to impact this appetite we see the market continuing for some time, albeit one has to have regard for the continued debate surrounding interest rate increases which may affect those seeking to borrow money to support purchases. With interest levels at the highest we’ve seen in the last five years those looking to exit their businesses should have confidence that the market can deliver strong returns.”
The Christie + Co Pharmacy team will be attending the Pharmacy Show on the 18-19th October at the NEC Birmingham, you can find them on Stand PG42.