The Swedish Coop, or Kooperativa Förbundet (KF), has bought up a 70 percent share in Löplabbet, a leading Swedish specialist chain for running footwear, apparel and equipment. Since this summer the chain has a deal with the Swedish supermarket chain to include Löplabbet stores on the list of retailers that accept Coop’s Medmera paying card. The chain will continue to be managed independently, and will get access to the funds it sorely needs for planned Nordic expansion. In Sweden the company now owns 13 stores and has three franchised stores and an online store. Five stores were opened during the year, and another five will be opened in the coming year in central and northern Sweden. The annual turnover for the Swedish business in 2007 was about 100 million Swedish kronor (€9.6m-$12.4m). Erik Vitéz, chief executive officer, and Tom Kelheim, a leading manager at the company, own the remaining 30 percent of the shares.