The Co-operative Group had reported record full year results, with operating profit before significant items up 11 per cent to £393m.

For the year ending January 10, 2009, the food to pharmacy and funerals group reported gross sales including VAT up 15 per cent, topping £10bn.

The Co-operative Group has completed the Somerfield acquisition, making it the fifth major grocery player. In the food business, like for like sales are up 5 per cent excluding petrol. Total sales are up 23.1 per cent and food profit is up 38.1 per cent to £219.1m.

For the first quarter of 2009 like for like sales for food are up 6.5 per cent, excluding petrol.

Co-operative Group Chief executive Peter Marks said: “These are record results from a rejuvenated Co-operative Group. The last year has seen us significantly improve sales and profitability while also laying solid foundations for the reinvigoration and renaissance of the wider co-operative movement with the acquisition of Somerfield and the agreement to merge our financial services business with the Britannia Building Society.”