Asda’s new owners plan to sell its petrol station network and some of its distribution centres while taking on £3.5bn worth of debt, it has been disclosed.
Brothers Mohsin and Zuber Issa, together with private equity firm TDR Capital, expect to complete the takeover of Britain’s third biggest supermarket chain later this month.
Asda will then sell its forecourts business to EG Group, the petrol station retailer already owned by the Issa brothers and TDR.
The deal will value that business at £750m and the petrol stations will continue to operate under the Asda brand as “an integral part of the broader retail locations where they are situated”.
Meanwhile, parts of Asda’s distribution network are to be sold to institutional property investors, though there will be “no day-to-day impact” on the supply chain or workforce, it was announced.
The details were disclosed by the supermarket’s new owners as they set out plans to raise around £3.5bn through a series of debt offers.
US retailer Walmart agreed last October to sell Asda in a deal valuing the chain at £6.8bn. Walmart will retain a minority stake.
The Issa brothers said in a statement: “Asda is an iconic British business that we have known and loved since we were children.
“We are proud to bring its ownership back to the UK and delighted that, with the support of TDR Capital and Walmart, we can invest in its future.
“We look forward to working with our Asda colleagues to build an even stronger, more differentiated retailer – including through the investment of more than £1bn in the next three years to further strengthen the business and its supply chain.
“We are also excited about the proposed integration of the Asda forecourts into EG’s established UK operations, which we believe would underpin the future growth of the combined network.”
The completion of the deal is subject to approval by the Financial Conduct Authority.
It is also being scrutinised by the Competition and Markets Authority, with a decision expected in the second quarter of this year.
Leeds-based Asda, founded in 1949, employs more than 146,000 people and has a network of nearly 600 stores.