Blackburn's billionaire Issa brothers are leading contenders to buy out Asda in £6.5bn takeover

Lancashire's billionaire Issa brothers are reportedly set to buy Asda from Walmart in a deal worth around £6.5bn.
Billionaire brothers Mohsin and Zuber Issa, from Blackburn, are reported to be leading a consortium to buy out Asda in a £6.5bn takeoverBillionaire brothers Mohsin and Zuber Issa, from Blackburn, are reported to be leading a consortium to buy out Asda in a £6.5bn takeover
Billionaire brothers Mohsin and Zuber Issa, from Blackburn, are reported to be leading a consortium to buy out Asda in a £6.5bn takeover

Billionaire brothers Mohsin and Zuber Issa, from Blackburn, are reported to be leading a consortium to buy a controlling stake in the supermarket.

Sky News reports that the businessmen, who are co-owners of Euro Garages, are now the preferred bidders for the US-owned supermarket chain.

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The Issa brothers are understood to be backed by a syndicate of lenders including Barclays, ING, Lloyds Banking Group and Morgan Stanley.

Asda is currently owned by American retail giant Walmart and the sale would see Asda return to majority British ownership for the first time since 1999.

Just last week it was reported that Walmart was on the verge of agreeing a deal with Apollo Global Management, a buyout firm which has been working with Rob Templeman, the former boss of Debenhams.

Another private equity firm, Lone Star Funds, had been working with former Asda executive Paul Mason to pursue a bid, but it pulled out of the auction last week.

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The prospective sale of Asda comes more than two years after Walmart plotted a merger of the British chain with rival Sainsbury's, which was eventually scuppered by competition regulators.

A formal agreement could still be several weeks away, according to Sky News.

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Under their stewardship, Euro Garages has established itself as one of the UK’s fastest growing petrol station operators, with an expanding portfolio of around 5,000 sites and 44,000 staff across the UK, Europe, USA and Australia.

In March 2020, EG became KFC's largest franchisee in Europe through the acquisition of 145 KFC outlets in the UK and Ireland.