El Corte Inglés close to Kaufhof takeover? | RetailDetail

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


“Urgent action needed against territorial supply constraints”

23/05/2018

(content provided by EuroCommerce) Speaking to mark the launch of the Benelux study on territorial supply constraints, EuroCommerce Director-General Christian Verschueren argued for the EU to act on big brands’ fragmentation of the European market.

Action owner 3i wants to keep chain after all

22/05/2018

Investor 3i wants to keep a hold of Action after all. Even though the owner made it seem like it was looking for a buyer, 3i now denies it.

Action owner wants to sell stake

18/05/2018

Action’s owner, investment firm 3i, aims to sell a part of the discount store chain next year. The Brits would want to sell a 35 % stake in the firm.

Belgian fund close to HEMA acquisition

09/05/2018

Belgian Core Equity holding is allegedly close to acquiring Dutch chain HEMA: a verbal agreement is apparently in place, all that is required are the signatures.

Walmart, not Amazon, will acquire Indian market leader Flipkart

07/05/2018

Despite Amazon’s attractive offer, Indian online retailer Flipkart has chosen for Walmart and (remarkably), Google owner Alphabet as the new owners of 75 % of Flipkart’s shares. The deal is said to be worth 15 billion dollar.

Alibaba's growth exceeds expectations

07/05/2018

Chinese retail group Alibaba has published better-than-expected quarterly results: turnover went through the roof, but its profit is under pressure because of increased investments.