France

Why Casino will sell more than a hundred establishments to Intermarché – Economy



The Casino group, in debt to the tune of 6.4 billion euros at the end of 2022 – including 4.5 billion on its activity in France -, indicated, this Friday, that “the president of the commercial court de Paris has decided to open, on May 25, 2023, a conciliation procedure for an initial period of four months, possibly extendable by one month “for the benefit of Casino and its subsidiaries, including Monoprix and Franprix. Casino clarified that this procedure, which should allow it to reach an agreement with its creditors for a potential restructuring of its debt, “concerns only the financial debt of the company” and certain subsidiaries.

More than a hundred points of sale

At the same time, Casino – which employs more than 50,000 people in France and 200,000 worldwide under numerous brands – has also announced that it has reached an agreement with Intermarché for the sale of more than a hundred points of sale “from the Casino France scope”, comprising hypermarkets, supermarkets and convenience stores representing a total of 1.15 billion euros in turnover.

This sale would take place in two stages. The first disposals, those which will weigh around 600 million euros in turnover including tax, “will take place by the end of this year”; the following ones will represent 550 million euros in turnover. It should be noted that Casino has undertaken to carry them out “at the request” of Intermarché and “at the latest within three years”, this “deadline may be accelerated by Casino”.

Brittany strongly impacted?

Casino also clarified that, “on the signing of the binding agreements, the Les Mousquetaires group would pay Casino an initial lump sum payment of 100 million euros, which would be deducted from the final price calculated on the market value of the assets”.

In addition, Intermarché, which plans to convert some of these stores into discounters under its Netto brand, has “undertaken to acquire”, if Casino so requests within three years, “an additional volume of stores representing 500 million euros in turnover”.

For Intermarché, the operation makes it possible to “complete its national network”, explained the boss of the Les Mousquetaires / Intermarché group, Thierry Cotillard, this Friday, on Radio Classique, “and for Casino to refocus on its priority areas”, Île -de-France, Auvergne Rhône-Alpes and Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur.

“No social consequences”

“Casino could abandon Brittany”, confided, this Friday to the Telegram, Olivier Dauvers. But, for the journalist specializing in mass distribution, “there will be no social consequences. Employees will all be offered a new employment contract because, in this takeover situation, turnover increases, and therefore employment increases. On the macroeconomic level, this is therefore good news even if, on the microeconomic level, there are concerns for employees”.

The main concern stems from the differences in structure between the two groups: Casino is an integrated group with a more structured social dialogue, whereas at Intermarché, social policy depends on each store owner, the brand being a group of independents.

Finally, Casino specified that Intermarché “will participate” in a “future round table of the Casino group, with an equity investment of 100 million euros”, and that this agreement is “compatible with the ongoing discussions with Teract on the industrial project launched a few months ago, as well as with all additional capital operations”.



letelegramme Fr Trans

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