A SUPERMARKET giant is set to safeguard 16,000 jobs after taking control of failing convenience retailer McColl’s.

Morrisons will take control of the Scottish corner shop company after a successful takeover battle with the EG Group.

McColl’s, established in Glasgow in 1901, entered administration on Friday, putting 1100 shops and 16,000 jobs at risk.

The EG Group, whose owners also control supermarket chain Asda, had been the frontrunner to complete a deal for McColl’s until improved offers were put to administrators before Sunday’s 6pm deadline.

Initially, Morrisons’s bids had reportedly been rejected by lenders who favoured EG’s offer to immediately repay more £160 million of McColl’s debt.

It is now understood that Morrisons’s bid will also repay lenders in cash.

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Trustees for the McColl’s pension schemes called on the Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng to do whatever he can to ensure pension scheme members are well protected.

Bosses said all McColl’s staff will keep their jobs as the firm’s shops transfer to the new owner, while Morrisons will take over the company’s two pension schemes.

McColl’s filed a notice to appoint administrators from PwC on Friday, with the insolvency specialists expected to be formally appointed on Monday.

Morrisons is McColl’s wholesale supply partner and was expected immediately to terminate its deal with the convenience chain if its takeover move proved unsuccessful.

McColl’s also runs around 250 stores under the Morrisons Daily brand.

The deal comes less than a year after Morrisons itself was bought for £7 billion by US private equity company Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R).

The collapse of McColl’s has come after a financial struggle over the past two years as it witnessed soaring costs due to supply chain disruption, inflation and its large debt burden.

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It has also been reported in recent months that some independent suppliers have refused to stock McColl’s shops after the chain failed to pay bills within agreed timeframes.

This resulted in some local butchers refusing to provide sausages, black pudding and other goods to the chain.