French retailer Carrefour to launch $ 1.9 billion sale of Taiwan business – sources

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HONG KONG, Aug.11 (Reuters) – French retailer Carrefour (CARR.PA) plans to launch the sale of its Taiwanese business, valued at around 1.6 billion euros ($ 1.9 billion) in the coming weeks , three people with knowledge of the case told Reuters.

The operator of the supermarket chain has hired Morgan Stanley (MS.N) to handle the sale, which is expected to start after the summer, said the people, who declined to be identified because the information is confidential.

Carrefour has approached a number of potential buyers, including private equity firms, to gauge their interest, the people said.

The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Morgan Stanley declined to comment.

Europe’s largest retailer said in June it had started to consider possible consolidation, divestitures or mergers of its foreign subsidiaries, but denied having decided to sell any assets.

Carrefour acquired food distributor Wellcome Taiwan from Asia’s Dairy Farm (DAIR.SI) in December, making it the second largest player in the convenience store market in Taiwan. The operation, with an enterprise value of 97 million euros, involves the purchase of 224 stores as well as a warehouse.

Carrefour achieved Taiwanese sales of 1.26 billion euros in the first half, up 13% year-on-year at constant exchange rates. The company said the newly acquired Wellcome stores outperformed significantly.

While it has grown in Taiwan in recent years, Carrefour withdrew from the highly competitive Chinese market in 2019 by selling 80% of its loss-making operations to the electronics brand Suning.com (002024.SZ).

Reporting by Kane Wu; edited by Sumeet Chatterjee and Jason Neely

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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