Dairy Farm selling Rustan’s to Robinsons Retail

Multi-format retailer Robinsons Retail Holdings is spending PHP18 billion (US$343 million) to acquire Dairy Farm’s Rustan’s Supercenters, which operates the upmarket Rustan’s department stores.

Owned by the Gokongwei family, Robinsons Retail has more than 3500 retail outlets including supermarkets, department stores, drugstores, international fashion and beauty, and specialty coffee shops. Rustans is 100 per cent owned via a subsidiary by Hong Kong-listed retail group Dairy Farm International, which is majority owned by Jardine Matheson. It runs the food retail brands Marketplace by Rustan’s, Rustan’s Supermarket, Shopwise Hypermarket, Shopwise Express and Wellcome.

Robinsons Retail will acquire the 100 per cent stake held by Dairy Farm subsidiary MCBV in Rustans through a share swap. The deal calls for Rustans swapping shares for primary common shares of Robinsons. Some members of the Gokongwei family also intend to sell some of their shares under the deal.

Robinsons says it has agreed to partner with Dairy Farm to create a leading food retailer in the Philippines. The Gokongwei family will effectively own 51 per cent of the expanded capital of Robinsons Retail while Dairy Farm, through its arm MCBV, will own 18.25 per cent of the listed retail company upon the completion of the secondary sale tranche. The board of directors of Robinsons Retail and MCBV have approved the acquisitions.

In December, Robinsons Retail acquired a 20 per cent stake in Taste Central Curators, which runs Filipino e-commerce site BeautyMNL. Robinsons Retail shelled out PHP4 billion in capital expenditure last year, higher than the PHP3.3 billion spent a year earlier, to open about 150 new stores.

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