Dubai's MAF in talks on Egypt retail deal

  • Share via facebook
  • Tweet this
  • Bookmark and Share
Peter Walichnowski, CEO, Majid Al Futtaim Properties. (Photo for illustrative purposes only)

Peter Walichnowski, CEO, Majid Al Futtaim Properties. (Photo for illustrative purposes only)

Dubai retail firm Majid Al Futtaim (MAF) is in advanced discussions to buy Egypt's largest supermarket chain from family-owned Mansour Group, two sources said on Monday.

A due diligence process for the purchase of Mansour Group's Metro chain and discount grocery store Kheir Zaman has been concluded, one source said, speaking on condition of anonymity as the matter is not public. The Mansour Group's retail business is worth an estimated $200-$300m.

Both companies have agreed to go ahead with the deal and some minor details are now being cleared, the source said.

The transaction shows the growing interest of Gulf companies in expanding into the region's most populous Arab country at a time when valuations are low due to the economic instability following the Arab Spring.

Mansour Group, also the largest distributor of General Motors cars in Egypt, has been looking to sell Metro and Kheir Zaman since last year. MAF chief executive Iyad Malas told Reuters in January that the deal was in the due diligence stage.

MAF, which is the sole franchisee of French hypermarket chain Carrefour in the Middle East, declined to comment on the report. Mansour Group was not immediately available to comment.

The Egyptian group is also a shareholder in French bank Credit Agricole's Egyptian business and runs McDonald's Corp's chain in Egypt among its other businesses.

Metro is one of Egypt's largest supermarket chains with more than 40 outlets in 10 cities. Kheir Zaman, a discount grocery store, has over 2,000 employees and 30 stores throughout the country.

Unlisted MAF, which also runs nearly a dozen malls across the Middle East and North Africa, is keen on expanding in Egypt through acquisitions, according to one Dubai-based banking source who is aware of the discussions. Carrefour Egypt, which has 13 outlets across the country, is a joint venture between MAF and the French retail group.

Cash-rich Gulf investors remain interested in increasing their presence in Egypt despite the political turmoil in the country. In the banking sector, Gulf groups have taken advantage of a retreat by European banks in the aftermath of the financial crisis.

BNP Paribas has sold its Egyptian arm for $500m to Dubai lender Emirates NBD. And Societe Generale also agreed to sell its majority stake in National Societe Generale Bank to Qatar National Bank for $2bn.

Join the Discussion

Disclaimer:The view expressed here by our readers are not necessarily shared by Arabian Business, its employees, sponsors or its advertisers.

Please post responsibly. Commenter Rules

  • No comments yet, be the first!

Enter the words above: Enter the numbers you hear:

All comments are subject to approval before appearing

Further reading

Features & Analysis
Dubai's nightlife bubble: When is it going to burst?

Dubai's nightlife bubble: When is it going to burst?

A new breed of clubs and bars is sprouting in the city, but which...

Chocolate: worth its weight in gold?

Chocolate: worth its weight in gold?

Middle Eastern consumers with a sweet tooth are buying up ever...

Country focus: Lebanon’s start-up success

Country focus: Lebanon’s start-up success

A new-wave of entrepreneurship is helping Lebanon become a hot...

Most Discussed
  • 54
    Three UAE women attacked with hammer at London hotel

    I really feel that Arabian Business.Com should now close this comments page. This should be all about sympathy for the families not what it is/has turned... more

    Wednesday, 16 April 2014 1:06 PM - Adrienne
  • 51
    Why Dubai isn't a plastic city

    What is definitely not a plastic city. The Arabs have a culture dating back to several centuries. 50 years back Dubai was just a fishing village. Today... more

    Tuesday, 8 April 2014 3:49 PM - P. MADHUSUDAN
  • 48
    DMCC boss Ahmed Bin Sulayem entertains Robert Mugabe in Dubai

    @fga ''However today, simply because he decided to dispossess a few white farmers of their land and redistribute to the poorer indigenous blacks'' more

    Sunday, 13 April 2014 3:02 PM - Matt Williams