Delhaize grows in south-east Europe

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Tom Joyce

BY TOM JOYCE

@tomfruitnet

Delhaize grows in south-east Europe

Belgian retailer strikes deal to buy Serbia's Delta Maxi Group, as it seeks to expand its presence in the region

Delhaize grows in south-east Europe

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Belgian retailer Delhaize Group has announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire 100 per cent of Serbian retail company Delta Maxi Group, which operates around 450 stores in five countries in south-east Europe.

The deal, which is expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2011, stands at an estimated €932.5m.

Added to the group's existing operations in Greece and Romania, the new stores will make Delhaize Group a leading retailer in south-east Europe, the company said.

Pierre-Olivier Beckers, President and Chief Executive Officer of Delhaize Group, commented: "We are very excited about this transaction that fully supports the acceleration of our sales growth rate, a key priority of our New Game Plan."

Mr Beckers added that the southeast of Europe continued to be a very promising region due to economic growth and a rise in consumer spending.

"In 2011, we will be well positioned to capture these growth opportunities as our operations in seven southeastern European countries together are expected to generate revenues of approximately €3.4bn and to cover a network of more than 800 stores," he said. "This transaction is an important step in rebalancing our geographic portfolio between our US, European and Asian operations."

Delta Maxi Group operates in Serbia, where it is the largest food retailer, in addition to Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Albania.

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