El Corte Inglés close to Kaufhof takeover?

Several sources confirm that Metro Group's attempts to sell its Kaufhof chain (including Belgian Inno stores) to the Spanish group El Corte Inglés are finally going the right way.

Joint venture or straight takeover?

In July already, German newspaper Lebensmittel Zeitung reported that talks between the German Metro Group and El Corte Inglés, the largest department store chain in Europe, were “in an advanced stadium”. Now the same newspaper mentions new talks about different solutions, ranging from a joint venture to Metro selling Kaufhof altogether.

Unlike in July, other sources now confirm LZ's story. Still, a Metro Group spokesman refused to comment on the rumours, saying that Metro Group has always been ready to talk with anyone who is willing to discuss the German and/or European department store markets.

Time is running out

For Metro's chairman, Eckhard Cordes, time is running out: his contract at Metro ends next year and it is far from certain that his contract will be renewed. Still, Metro's main shareholder Franz Haniel & Cie, repeatedly expressed its support for Cordes.


El Corte Inglés reached a 2010 turnover of 16.4 billion euro with 100,000 employees spread over 80 Spanish and 2 Portuguese stores. Despite having more stores (124 in Germany and 15 in Belgium), Kaufhof is dwarfed by its Spanish counterpart – its turnover reaching only 3.6 billion euro with 22.000 employees.

Several sources confirm that Metro Group's attempts to sell its Kaufhof chain (including Belgian Inno stores) to the Spanish group El Corte Inglés are finally going the right way.

Joint venture or straight takeover?

In July already, German newspaper Lebensmittel Zeitung reported that talks between the German Metro Group and El Corte Inglés, the largest department store chain in Europe, were “in an advanced stadium”. Now the same newspaper mentions new talks about different solutions, ranging from a joint venture to Metro selling Kaufhof altogether.

Unlike in July, other sources now confirm LZ's story. Still, a Metro Group spokesman refused to comment on the rumours, saying that Metro Group has always been ready to talk with anyone who is willing to discuss the German and/or European department store markets.

Time is running out

For Metro's chairman, Eckhard Cordes, time is running out: his contract at Metro ends next year and it is far from certain that his contract will be renewed. Still, Metro's main shareholder Franz Haniel & Cie, repeatedly expressed its support for Cordes.


El Corte Inglés reached a 2010 turnover of 16.4 billion euro with 100,000 employees spread over 80 Spanish and 2 Portuguese stores. Despite having more stores (124 in Germany and 15 in Belgium), Kaufhof is dwarfed by its Spanish counterpart – its turnover reaching only 3.6 billion euro with 22.000 employees.

Questions or comments? Please feel free to contact the editors


American department store chains continue to struggle

11/08/2017

Several American department store chains continue to underperform. Both Macy’s and Kohl’s experienced turnover slumps compared to the previous year, even though they both managed to beat analysts’ expectations.

Record turnover for Henkel

10/08/2017

Henkel’s second quarter turnover reached a record number of nearly 5.1 billion euro, thanks to its laundry detergent company Sun’s acquisition. For the first time ever, its six-month turnover surpassed the 10 billion euro milestone.

Lion Capital once again wants to sell Hema

08/08/2017

Lion Capital has approached business bank Credit Suisse to look into “strategic options” for Hema, which basically means it has to find an interested buyer for the Dutch store chain.

British consumer spending continues to drop

07/08/2017

Consumer spending in the UK has dropped for the third straight month in July. It is the first time in four years that there was a three-month drop, with analysts pointing to the Brexit.

Over 100 startups at Shoptalk Europe

04/08/2017

(advertorial) Shoptalk Europe is the big, new event for retail and ecommerce innovation. It covers the transformational trends, technologies and business models reshaping how consumers discover, shop and buy in an age of digital disruption. 

Bic lowers full-year growth forecast

03/08/2017

French company Bic, known for its disposable lighters, ball-point pens and razor blades, has seen its sales stagnate over the past six months. The board has immediately lowered its full-year growth forecast.

Back to top