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Retail

Louis Delhaize To Shutter Some Match And Smatch Stores In Belgium

By Branislav Pekic
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Louis Delhaize To Shutter Some Match And Smatch Stores In Belgium

Several Match and Smatch stores in Belgium face the risk of closure as they struggle to find new owners, according to a report by the Belga news agency.

In September of last year, Colruyt Group acquired 57 Match and Smatch stores from Louis Delhaize Group for an undisclosed amount.

Of the 27 stores not taken over by Colruyt, 19 will shut their doors between mid-January and March, impacting 163 employees, according to the report.

Stores at risk of closure include Match stores in Knesselaere, Kluisbergen, Waasmunster, and Mouscron, as well as Smatch stores in Cuesmes, Jemappes, Haaltert, Mechelen, Stembert, Moerbeke, Assenede, Zulte, Tienen, Jodoigne, Deerlijk, Maldegem, Eksaarde, Kalken, and Zeveneken.

New Owners

Seven other stores (Binche, Fleurus, Kessel-Lo, Leuze, Sint-Lambrechts-Woluwe, Thulin, and Zele) have found new owners in Carrefour, Delhaize, and Intermarché franchises, saving 150 jobs.

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Meanwhile, negotiations continue for one Match store in Beaumont, while the fate of logistics and support services and 337 employees remains uncertain.

The decision to close follows a failed attempt to find new buyers for the remaining stores after Colruyt's acquisition.

Despite the closures, the management claims that nearly 1,150 jobs were saved through store transfers to new banners, the report said.

Colruyt noted that the Match and Smatch stores acquired by it are geographically complementary to its current food retail network.

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The retailer aims to ensure a smooth transition in the months ahead and make the acquired stores economically and sustainably profitable under its known store formulas.

It will evaluate each store – based on its size, the local market, and customer needs – to decide on a suitable business format.

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