Walmart Selling Asda To Sainsbury’s, Will Hold 42% Stake In Merged Company
BENTONVILLE (KFSM) — Walmart announced early Monday (April 30) it is retreating from the United Kingdom in a $10 billion deal that garners it a 42% stake in Sainsbury’s in exchange for its grocery supermarket chain Asda.
The move was not a surprise given Asda’s lackluster growth in recent years amid strong competition from Aldi, Lidl and Tesco.
It’s not the first time Walmart merged with a larger player in a difficult market. The retailer sold its Chinese company Yihaodian to JD.com and now holds a minority share in the larger JD.com.
The Sainsbury’s deal will create a retail chain with 2,800 stores and combined annual sales of $70 billion, putting Sainsbury’s and Walmart ahead of the lead competitor Tesco. Kantar estimates Sainsbury/Asda will control 31% of the grocery market share compared to 28% for Tesco.
“We believe the combination offers a unique and exciting opportunity that benefits customers and colleagues,” said Walmart President and CEO Doug McMillon.
“As a company, we’ve benefited from doing business in the UK for many years, and we look forward to working closely with Sainsbury’s to deliver the benefits of the combination.”
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