Latin American investment fund Pátria Investimentos has acquired a 56% stake in wholesaler Atakarejo, a market leader in the Brazilian state of Bahia and the sixth largest nationwide.
The value of the deal was not disclosed, but according to market estimates it could be worth between R$ 700 million (€128 million) and R$ 850 million (€156 million).
The founder of Atakarejo, businessman Teobaldo Costa, will continue to lead the company, as an executive and minority partner.
In the coming years, the chain expects to expand its operations in northeastern Brazil, opening up 10 to 15 new stores yearly, as it increases its network to at least 50 stores over the next five years.
In a statement, Pátria Investimentos said it plans 'robust investments to expand the network, with the opening of new stores, team development, and efficiency gains'.
It also plans to explore potential synergies with 'other businesses connected to the retail market'.
The conclusion of the deal is still subject to approval by the Administrative Council for Economic Defense (CADE).
The acquisition marks Pátria Investimentos’ entry into the so-called 'atacarejo' sector, which offers wholesale prices at retail and is the fastest growing in Brazil.
During the first six months of 2023, wholesale sales in Brazil grew 16.8% compared to the same period the previous year, while the channel accounted for 20% of total retail sales, according to the NielsenIQ consultancy.
Atakarejo began its history 40 years ago, initially with a fruit stand, and today has 28 points of sale distributed among supermarkets, cash and carry stores, and convenience stores in the state of Bahia, in addition to two distribution centers.
The company closed 2022 with net revenue of R$ 3.7 billion (€679 million), an increase of 24% over the previous year, while net profit grew 62% in the same period to R$ 29.7 million (€5.4 million).