China Resources to buy domestic retailer for $573 mln

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China Resources Enterprise Ltd , the country’s biggest supermarket operator and top beer maker, said on Friday it plans to buy domestic retailer Jiangxi Hongkelong Department Store for 3.69 billion yuan ($573 million).

In a filing with the Hong Kong stock exchange, China Resources said it would finance the acquisition by cash in four installments.

“The acquisition of the target Company will enable the company to increase … market share in retail business,” China Resources said.

The target company, based in the southeast Chinese province of Jiangxi, had an after-tax profit of 93 million yuan in 2010, up from 18 million yuan the previous year. As of the end of last year, it had audited net asset value of 230 million yuan.

In May, China Resources’ Chief Financial Officer Frank Lai said the company was looking at 6-7 deals in China in areas including breweries, supermarkets and beverage to tap China’s rising consumer demand.

China Resources produces China’s top beer brand, Snow, with one of the world’s largest brewers SABMiller Plc . ($1 = 6.443 Chinese Yuan)