Supermarket arms race: Nisa gears up for member vote over Sainsbury's buyout

Ivan Schwartz
June 19, 2017

United Kingdom retailer Sainsbury is said to be close to submitting a formal bid to acquire Nisa, a wholesaler and convenience store group that counts more than 2,500 independently-owned stores around the United Kingdom as members.

According to The Telegraph, Nisa - which buys and distributes on behalf of more than 2500 independently-owned stores around the United Kingdom - has been working with bankers at Lazard and has narrowed the list of potential buyers to Sainsbury's and the Co-op.

If the Nisa board recommends the offer, it would require the backing of at least 50% of Nisa's shopkeeper members.

In a bidding war, Sainsbury's is understood to have been selected by the board as the preferred buyer over its rival the Co-operative Group.

Shares in Sainsbury's were 2.3% higher at 258.1p in morning trading, taking it to the top of the FTSE 100.

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It followed Tesco's proposed £3.7bn acquisition of Booker Group, the food distributor, among other recent moves in the sector.

In April, Nisa chief Nick Read warned of the threat posed by Tesco's purchase of Booker as it would increase the latter's buying power.

According to reports, Sainsbury's could soon sign a £130m deal for the business.

"Sainsbury's move into convenience shows the brand's determination to remain a key player in the market".

Sainsbury's, Nisa and the CMA declined to comment.

Other reports by GizPress

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