(Bloomberg)—Walmart Inc., No. 3 in the 2020 Digital Commerce 360 Top 500, said it’s revived talks on a potential sale of its U.K. grocery unit Asda, after the potential multibillion-dollar deal was put on hold amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The world’s biggest retailer and Asda are in discussions with a “small number” of suitors interested in acquiring a stake in the British business after renewed inbound interest, they said Monday in an emailed response to Bloomberg queries.
“We believe now is the right time to explore options for a third party to invest in our business to accelerate the long-term delivery of our value strategy, both in stores and online,” the two companies said in the statement. There’s no certainty the latest discussions will lead to a transaction, they said.
Private equity firms Apollo Global Management Inc., Lone Star Funds and TDR Capital each submitted first-round offers for Asda earlier this year, Bloomberg News has reported. A deal was expected to value the business at more than 7 billion pounds ($8.6 billion), a person with knowledge of the matter said in March.
Weeks later, Walmart put the planned sale of a majority stake on hold to focus management’s attention on running the business amid unprecedented spikes in demand from consumers stockpiling for the COVID-19 lockdown.
In other Walmart news, Yahoo (owned by Verizon Media) and Walmart will allow Yahoo Mail users to buy essential groceries from Walmart right within Yahoo Mail. It will be the first-time email users, in general, can fill a shopping cart from their inbox, the companies said.
“Customers are leaning on Walmart more than ever for us to help them save on items they need the most, but also to help save them time,” said Rich Lehrfeld, senior vice president, Walmart Marketing. “The new ‘Groceries from Walmart’ feature that lives within Yahoo Mail takes one more step out of our customers’ days, helping them shop when, how and where they want.”Favorite