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Retail

France's Casino Confirms It Has Received Offers For Stores

By Reuters
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France's Casino Confirms It Has Received Offers For Stores

French supermarket group Casino has received expressions of interest for its hypermarket and supermarket stores, the company said, declining to name the bidders or number of stores it intends to sell.

Casino has been preparing to sell more supermarkets to Intermarche, a unit of Groupement Les Mousquetaires, or even put its remaining stores for sale to the highest bidder, French daily Les Echos reported on Monday.

The group has already received expressions of interest for its remaining 291 supermarkets, including 60 franchises, and 52 large-scale hypermarkets, the newspaper said.

Candidates must submit their offer by Wednesday, Les Echos said.

Debt Restructuring

France's sixth-largest retailer has been building back its business after an October deal to avert bankruptcy through a debt restructuring with its main creditors, led by Czech billionaire Daniel Kretinsky.

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In a statement on Monday, Casino said that any disposal must be approved by the consortium in accordance with the lock-up agreement reached on Oct. 5.

The group is facing the consequences of years of debt-fuelled deals that, after recent losses in market share and revenue declines, have put it on the verge of bankruptcy.

Slower Than Expected Turnaround

It warned last week of likely 2023 losses for its core French business owing to a slower than expected turnaround at its hypermarkets division.

In France, Casino also owns high-end supermarket chain Monoprix – which recently announced plans to open its first store in Belgium – as well as convenience store chain Franprix while it controls GPA in Brazil, its second-largest market behind France.

Additional reporting by ESM

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