Walmart sells UK's Asda supermarkets for $8.8 bln

Walmart is selling UK supermarket chain Asda in a deal valued at 8.8 billion dollars.

The buyers are private equity group TDR Capital and billionaire brothers Mohsin and Zuber Issa - founders of petrol stations operator EG Group.

The deal means Asda will be back under British ownership for the first time since 1999.

Back then it was bought by Walmart for just slightly less than it’s now set to receive.

The U.S. giant will retain an equity investment in the business, with an ongoing commercial relationship and a seat on the board.

It may also gain a sense of relief, having spent years trying to sell Asda.

Back in 2019 a proposed merger with rival Sainsbury’s was blocked by competition watchdogs.

Reports that private equity firm KKR would then buy the firm ultimately came to nothing.

Now Asda’s new owners say they will invest around 1.3 billion dollars over the next three years to keep prices low and protect supply chains.

While its sales have risen this year, Asda has lagged the gains posted by Sainsbury’s and other rivals.