June 10 (Reuters) – French privately held retailer Auchan plans to list its Chinese joint venture to raise between 500 million euros ($671 million) and 670 million, Le Figaro newspaper said on Thursday without citing its sources.
Non-Cyclical Consumer Goods
Auchan and its joint-venture partner, conglomerate Ruentex Group of Taiwan, occupy the top spot in hypermarkets in China where Auchan expects to post sales growth of 25 percent this year as well as open six new hypermarkets.
Together, Auchan and Ruentex have 156 hypermarkets in China, which sell food alongside clothes and televisions. Auchan China runs 35 hypermarkets with sales of nearly 1 billion euros and Ruentex has 121 RT Mart stores with sales of 3.75 billion euros.
Auchan and Ruentex’s 50-50 joint venture Sun Holding holds 67.2 percent of Ruentex’s RT Mart China, which in 2008 sidelined France’s Carrefour (CARR.PA) as China’s biggest hypermarket chain, and 65.6 percent in Aucan China.
If the initial public offering, which Le Figaro said could be announced in July, takes place, Auchan and Ruentex could sell 30 percent of Sun Holding.
At Auchan no one was immediately available to comment. ($1=.7453 euros) (Reporting by Caroline Jacobs; Editing by Mike Nesbit)