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Canada: Metro, Jean Coutu enter $4.5b deal grocery merger

 |  October 2, 2017

Two of the biggest retail names in Quebec have joined forces in a US$4.5-billion deal they say will make them a leader in food, pharmacy, health and beauty.

Grocery chain Metro Inc. has made a formal offer to take over Jean Coutu pharmacy group after exclusive negotiations between the two retailers.

Shareholders of Jean Coutu are being offered a combination of cash and shares worth about US$24.50 per share. Three-quarters of the payout or US$3.2 billion will be in cash and 25% in Metro shares, making Jean Coutu shareholders 11% owners of Metro.

Metro has more than 850 food and pharmacy stores in Quebec and Ontario, while Jean Coutu has 419 pharmacies in Quebec, Ontario and New Brunswick.

Together, including their franchise operations, they employ 86,000 people and are the largest private sector employer in Quebec, according to Metro chief executive officer Eric La Flèche.

Full Content: Bloomberg

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