The EBRD is promoting the modern format food retail industry in Romanian regions with a syndicated loan of up to €210 million to Louis Delhaize, a reputable European retailer, to finance the company’s investment programme in Romania
Based in Charleroi, Belgium, the privately-owned Louis Delhaize Group operates hundreds of hypermarkets, supermarkets, convenience stores, garden centres and pet shops in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Romania, Hungary and the United Kingdom.
Louis Delhaize Group has been present in Romania since 2003, where it currently operates eight hypermarkets under its Cora brand.
With the support of the EBRD financing, Louis Delhaize will build up to 17 large and medium-sized hypermarkets in Bucharest and regional towns of Romania. The project will help the development of the modern retail format outside the capital, bring superior quality products to wider parts of the population and will support the development of local agricultural producers.
In addition new Cora stores will showcase the successful implementation of international best practice sustainable energy solutions in retail buildings.
The facility includes a portion of up to €140 million for the EBRD’s own account, and a portion of up to €70 million syndicated to ING and Rabobank.
“The successful syndication of this facility in the current economic environment is a sign of confidence in Romania’s economy. This project will benefit Romanian regions by providing stable market outlets for the local farming sector, and by generating new employment opportunities for local people. It will also bring a quality service and a wide range of products at competitive prices to smaller towns in Romania,” said Thomas Mirow, EBRD President.
“Louis Delhaize is happy to continue its investments in Romania, which is now becoming an important market. The construction and opening of up to 17 new hypermarkets and a shopping mall in Romania show its belief in the potential of the Romanian economy. Louis Delhaize appreciates the continued support of the EBRD in its investments in the region.” stated François Bouriez, the company’s CEO.
Overall since the beginning of its operations in Romania, the EBRD has committed over €5.4 billion to various sectors of the country’s economy.
In agribusiness alone, the EBRD has directly committed more than €7 billion in over 440 projects across central and eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States since 1991.