December 11, 2007 / 7:57 AM / 12 years ago

Tesco reported to bid for Czech stores

A Tesco store sign is seen in London, October 3, 2006. Tesco, the world's third-largest retailer, has offered to pay about 200 million euros (143.64 million pounds) for 144 discount supermarkets in the Czech Republic, a Czech newspaper reported on Tuesday. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

PRAGUE (Reuters) - Tesco (TSCO.L), the world’s third-largest retailer, has offered to pay about 200 million euros (143.64 million pounds) for 144 discount supermarkets in the Czech Republic, a Czech newspaper reported on Tuesday.

The daily Mlada fronta Dnes cited unidentified sources as saying Tesco lodged the highest bid and was the frontrunner to buy the Plus discount retail outlets put up for sale by German retailer Tengelmann.

Tesco in the Czech Republic had no comment on the report.

The company has 93 stores in the Czech Republic, and if it buys the Plus supermarket chain, it will become market leader with about 48 billion crowns (1.32 billion pounds) in annual sales, the newspaper said.

Tesco has boosted its position in the Czech market by acquiring several Carrefour (CARR.PA) hypermarkets through an asset swap with the French company.

Other bidders for the Plus discount outlets include Penny Market, Interspar and Germany’s Schwarz, which operates the Lidl supermarkets, said the Czech daily.

Reporting by Marek Petrus, editing by Will Waterman

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