Four Bids Arrive for Majority Stake in Mercator
Three financial investors and one strategic investor have submitted non-binding bids for a 52.1% stake in retailer Mercator, which is being jointly sold by beverage group Pivovarka Lasko and a consortium of banks, the NLB bank said.
NLB, which represents the consortium, only said that the London-based ING bank had collected four bids by the Monday deadline, but it did not reveal the names of the bidders.
The bank added that ING will talk to all the bidders on behalf of the sellers, which will serve as a basis for the decision on further steps.
Pivovarka Lasko is selling a 23.34% stake and a total of 28.76% of Slovenia's leading retailer is being sold by banks Abanka, Banka Celje, Banka Koper, Gorenjska banka, Hypo Alpe Adria, NKBM and NLB, and investment funds NFD 1 and NFD Holding.
Unofficially, the bidders are financial firms Mid Europa, Warburg Pincus and TPG and Mercator's Croatian rival Agrokor.
The Croatian media reported on Tuesday that Agrokor was offering EUR 832.14m for the full takeover of Mercator, or EUR 221 per share.
Other reports suggest that the bids by the financial investors are considerably lower.
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