Carrefour – Billa merger is entering a new phase. After the Competition Council (CC) has agreed to complete the transaction by which French retailer took over the supermarkets operated initially by German group Rewe, there will be major changes on both sides, zf.ro informs. Thus, Billa brand will disappear in one year.
According to CC decision, Carrefour will have the right to operate Billa Romania stores under the name Billa only for 18 months from the trade date.
Therefore, Carrefour will rebrand the 86 Billa supermarkets in ‘Market’ during this period. The company did not specify what is the chart of remodeling stores, but noted that the rebranding process will not start in the next three months.
Now, the Carrefour group includes 139 Carrefour stores with 29 hypermarkets and 110 supermarkets, which means that after the completion of the rebranding process, there will be at least 193 Carrefour Market supermarkets.
Following the analysis, the Competition Council found that in Braila geographical area the operation could lead to the strengthening of the market position of Carrefour with the effect of reducing consumer’s choice. In this situation, there was the possibility that the transaction would have led to higher food prices in the area.
Also, Carrefour had undertaken not to engage in assigned activities for a significant period of at least 10 years. The assignment will be carried out as a transfer of activity without interruption for each store individually or all together. At the same time, Carrefour will make all efforts to maintain economic viability and competitiveness of the divested business.