Britain's Tesco is selling its Polish business for about PLN 900 million (€202 million), the supermarket group said on Thursday, leaving its central European business focused on the Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia.
Britain's biggest retailer's withdrawal from Poland follows the sale of the its supermarket businesses in Thailand and Malaysia in March, and is a further retreat from its once lofty global ambitions.
“We have seen significant progress in our business in Central Europe, but continue to see market challenges in Poland," commented chief executive Dave Lewis.
"Today’s announcement allows us to focus in the region on our business in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia, where we have stronger market positions with good growth prospects and achieve margins, cashflows and returns which are accretive to the Group."
The buyer of its 301-store Polish business is Salling Group A/S. Tesco said net proceeds were expected to be 165 million pounds in cash.
Those proceeds are in addition to the approximately £200 million Tesco has received from selling about 22 stores in Poland.
The group said it would continue to seek value from the remaining assets which include 19 currently trading stores not covered by the deal with Salling.
"I would like to thank all of our Tesco Poland colleagues for their dedication to serving customers in Poland over many years," Lewis added.
"The energy and commitment they have shown over the past two years transforming Tesco Poland to a two-format business has been incredibly impressive. We see this transaction as the best way to secure the future of the business for our colleagues and customers in Poland”.