PARIS — Beleaguered retailer Carrefour SA said Tuesday that it will dispose of a real estate portfolio including 97 supermarket properties in France owned by Carrefour Property and operated by Carrefour Market to investment vehicles run by La Française AM.
The deal is worth 365 million euros, or $477.3 million at current exchange.
“With this transaction, Carrefour optimizes the use of its capital employed, which will be reinvested, notably into real estate development projects,” the company stated, adding that the disposal value reflects a capitalization rate of about 6.5 percent, including transfer duties.
Looking ahead, Carrefour — the world’s second-largest retailer behind Wal-Mart Stores Inc. — is to continue operating those Carrefour Market supermarkets with 12-year initial leases and multiple renewal options.
By the end of 2010, La Française AM managed assets worth 35 billion euros, or $46.48 billion at average exchange for that year. Of that, 5.8 billion euros, or $7.7 billion, was in real estate.
The news about the supermarket properties comes just days after Carrefour, in mid-December, said it would exercise its put option on its stake in Altis Group, a company franchisee in southwest France. Carrefour also revealed at that time its intention to buy French operator Guyenne et Gascogne.
Over the past three years, Carrefour has struggled to turn around its ailing hypermarket business in France and posted a string of profit warnings.
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