Leading private healthcare rivals PPP and BUPA are both now believed to be developing high street retail formats.
Both groups confirm they have development plans in the pipeline, but neither will comment further.
“We are looking at a range of possible initiatives,” says a PPP spokesman.
“BUPA is constantly looking at developing business opportunities. However, we cannot confirm any such developments for high street outlets,” says a BUPA spokeswoman.
Sources in the property industry suggest that BUPA is in discussions with a major bank regarding a number of properties and that Fitch will look after retail design (DW 7 March).
A spokeswoman for Fitch confirmed the consultancy is working with BUPA, but could not disclose the nature of the project.