British retailer Marks & Spencer is apparently preparing a bid for six Parisian Casino stores, probably in an attempt to expand its M&S Food branch in France.
An offer for 6 Parisian stores?
According to specialized French website LSA, Marks&Spencer is finalizing a bid in order to purchase 6 of the 50 stores Casino hopes to get rid of. The Brits would mainly go for six Parisian stores.
The British will not deny or confirm the news: “We are looking for further opportunities to expand our offer in France but we are unable to comment on speculation regarding future plans," a spokesperson has stated.
Definitely another 10 M&S Food stores by 2018
M&S’s possible interest in the Casino stores is not that far-fetched: there are already four Parisian M&S Food stores and only one month ago, the chain announced a deal with Relay to open another ten food stores in and around Paris by 2018. The first store of the partnership should open its doors next summer, in a former Virgin Store at La Défense.
More than ever, the food sector is a growth opportunity for Marks&Spencer. In the period up until September, its food turnover grew 5.3 %, while non-food turnover only grew 0.4 %.
(Translated by Gary Peeters)