UK retailer Tesco and China Resources Enterprise (CRE) are in talks about merging their hypermarkets and supermarkets in China.
The venture would create a business with sales of some £10 billion, in which CRE and Tesco's effective interests are expected to be 80 percent and 20 percent respectively.
It would involve CRE combining its CR Vanguard business, which currently operates 2,986 stores across China and Hong Kong, with Tesco China's 131 stores and shopping mall business, a statement said
CRE said that the venture would bring together its "deep understanding of local customers, established nationwide infrastructure and proven track record as a partner with Tesco's global retail expertise, international sourcing scale and supply chain capabilities".
The intended partnership follows a series of highly successful joint ventures between CRE and other multi-national corporations and is "consistent with Tesco's stated strategy of focusing on profitable routes to growth in fast-growing but less mature markets, with a disciplined approach to the allocation of capital," Tesco said.
They warned that there was no guarantee the deal would be concluded.
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