In a quest for cash, French supermarket group Casino is selling its subsidiary Vindémia in the Indian Ocean. In the domestic market of France, three hypermarkets will also be sold to competitors.
219 million euros for 250 stores
Casino has made an agreement on the sale of its Vindémia chain with industry peer Group Bernard Hayot (GBH). The supermarket chain runs about 250 stores in the Indian Ocean, 160 of which are located on the French island of Réunion and sixty on Madagascar. Between 2001 and 2007, Casino gradually bought its way into the company, but is now disposing of the entire chain for 2019 million euros.
Vindémia is actually quite an important player in the region, with various store formats ranging from hypermarkets to neighbourhood stores. In 2018, the chain turned over 853 million euros with an operational profit of 12 million according to trade journal LSA. Casino will still be present on Réunion through its discount formula Leader Price, several of which are run by franchise group Caillé on the island.
Acquirer GBH considers the transaction to be a nice opportunity for the group, allowing it to confirm its ambitions in the Indian Ocean. With a total of 11,000 employees, the holding has a presence in 17 countries, from the Caribbean over Africa to China. Bernard Hayot handles the production of Danone yoghurt on Réunion and also produces and exports various brands of rum on Martinique. In terms of retail, the group mostly brings French formulas Carrefour, Mr. Bricolage and Decathlon overseas.
Two million less loss
Meanwhile in France, Casino is also disposing of three loss-making hypermarkets, representing a total of 42 million euros. The outlets are in Marmande, Onet-le-Château and Béziers. The first two stores will go to partners of competitor Système U and the third will become a Leclerc franchisee. The hypermarkets in question did generate a turnover of 76 million euros before taxes in 2018, but they had an operational loss totalling 2 million euros.