Couche-Tard in talks to buy Carrefour

Couche-Tard in talks to buy Carrefour

The Canadian retailer offers $19.7 billion for France’s largest store chain

The middle of the week came bearing news from some of the largest convenience stores in the world.

Canada-based Couche-Tard announced that it is willing to pay $24.35 a share for purchasing France's Carrefour. The offer is 29% premium over the closing price reported by Carrefour on Tuesday, pushing its valuation at $19.7 billion.

If the deal goes through, Couche-Tard could further expand its European presence, where it already has 2,700 outlets. But the potential merger already received a negative vote from the French government. Bruno Le Maire, the country's Finance Minister, declared that he opposes a takeover given that "What is at stake is the food sovereignty of the French people. So from this point of view, the idea that Carrefour could be bought by a foreign competitor, on the face of it, I am not in favor of this operation." The French government has the power to block the deal.

Even though the two of them are in preliminary talks, Carrefour stock price went up 15% following the news.

Sources: edition.cnn.com, Bloomberg.com

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