Leading international food retailers Delhaize Group and Royal Ahold N.V. announced that they have entered into an agreement to merge

  • Ahold and Delhaize announce this morning their intention to combine their businesses through a merger of equals
  • The merger will create a complementary base of more than 6,500 stores with 375,000 associates, characterized by trusted brands with strong local identities
  • The combination, Ahold Delhaize, will be able to serve over 50 million(1) customers per week in the United States and in Europe
  • Ahold Delhaize will accelerate innovation, bringing together both companies’ expertise to deliver increased value and choice for customers across its supermarket formats and online platforms
  • The combination will bring together banners offering associates even better places to work, built on similar values and heritage
  • Mats Jansson, Chairman of Delhaize Group, will become Chairman of Ahold Delhaize. Jan Hommen, Chairman of Royal Ahold, and Jacques de Vaucleroy, Delhaize Group Director, will become Vice Chairmen of Ahold Delhaize
  • Dick Boer, Chief Executive Officer of Royal Ahold, will become Chief Executive Officer. Frans Muller, Chief Executive Officer of Delhaize Group, will become Deputy Chief Executive Officer and Chief Integration Officer
  • The transaction will create significant value, with anticipated run-rate synergies of €500 million per year to be fully realized in the third year after completion
  • Both companies are highly cash generative which will allow Ahold Delhaize to invest in future growth and deliver attractive returns to shareholders
  • Ahold and Delhaize businesses reported aggregated net sales of €54.1 billion, adjusted EBITDA of €3.5 billion, net income from continued operations of €1.0 billion and free cash flow of €1.8 billion in 2014(1)
  • Ahold will terminate its ongoing share buyback program; €1 billion will be returned to Ahold shareholders via a capital return and a reverse stock split prior to completion of the transaction
  • At completion, Delhaize shareholders will receive 4.75 Ahold ordinary shares for each Delhaize ordinary share. Ahold shareholders will own c. 61% of the combined company’s equity and Delhaize shareholders will own c. 39% of the combined company’s equity
  • The transaction is expected to be completed mid-2016, following regulatory clearances, associated consultation procedures and shareholder approval
  • The Executive Committee and Board of Directors of Delhaize as well as Management and Supervisory Boards of Ahold unanimously support and recommend the transaction

Brussels, Belgium and Zaandam, the Netherlands, 2015-6-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — Leading international food retailers Delhaize Group (Delhaize) and Koninklijke Ahold N.V. (Ahold) today announced that they have entered into an agreement to merge. The combined company, which will be named Ahold Delhaize, will have a portfolio of strong, trusted local brands with more than 375,000 associates serving more than 50 million customers every week in the United States and Europe. The company will have enhanced scale across regions, market-leading retail offerings to serve customers’ changing needs, and a strong financial profile from which to fund innovation and investments in future growth. Ahold Delhaize will capitalize on the strong heritage and values of both companies, as well as complementary cultures, neighboring geographies, and the impact of combining successful sustainability programs.

Jan Hommen, Chairman of Ahold, and Mats Jansson, Chairman of Delhaize, said:“This is a true merger of equals, combining two highly complementary businesses to create a world-leading food retailer. The transaction delivers a compelling value proposition for our shareholders, a superior offering for our customers and attractive opportunities for our associates.”

Frans Muller, CEO of Delhaize, said: “We believe that the proposed merger of Ahold and Delhaize will create significant value for all our stakeholders. Supported by our talented and committed associates, Ahold Delhaize aims to increase relevance in its local communities by improving the value proposition for its customers through assortment innovation and merchandising, a better shopping experience both in stores and online, investments in value, and new store growth. We look forward to working closely with the Ahold team to implement a smooth integration process and realize the targeted synergies.”

Dick Boer, CEO of Ahold, said: “The proposed merger with Delhaize is an exciting opportunity to create an even stronger and more innovative retail leader for our customers, associates and shareholders worldwide. With extraordinary reach, diverse products and formats, and great people, we are bringing together two world-class organizations to deliver even more for the communities we serve. Our companies share common values, proud histories rooted in family entrepreneurship, and businesses that complement each other well. We look forward to working together to reach new levels of service and success.”

(1) These figures are an aggregation of the reported data of Ahold and Delhaize without any pro forma adjustments. They exclude joint ventures in Portugal and Indonesia.

Transaction website

Please visit www.adcombined.com for additional material on today’s announcement.

Investor conference call

A conference call will take place today at 09.00 CEST to discuss this morning’s announcement. If you wish to join, please dial one of the following numbers:
From Brussels: +32(0)2 404 0660
From the Netherlands: +31(0)20 716 8256
From the US: +1 212 444 0895 or +1 877 280 1254
From the UK: +44(0)20 3427 1904
Confirmation code: 1225825

The presentation slides will be available from the transaction website at www.adcombined.com. The presentation slides may be downloaded before the start of the conference call from the website at www.adcombined.com.

A recording of the conference call will also be available from today on the website at www.adcombined.com.

Press conference

A press conference will also take place today at 12.00 CEST at the Business Faculty Brussels, St. Lendriksborre 6 Font Saint Landry, 1120 Brussels.

It will be simultaneously webcast on www.adcombined.com and available to view thereafter.

For more information

Delhaize Group
Investor relations contacts
Frederic van Daele
+32 2 412 2151

Aurélie Bultynck
+32 2 412 2151

Media contacts
Nicolas van Hoecke
+32 2 412 8669

Royal Ahold N.V.
Investor relations contacts
Henk Jan ten Brinke
+31 88 659 5213

Media contacts
Tim van der Zanden
+31 88 659 5134

 

To read the full press release, please click here