LJUBLJANA, April 5 (Reuters) - Owners of Slovenia’s Mercator are likely to form a consortium later in April to sell some 68 percent of the country’s largest food retailer, daily Finance reported on Thursday.
It said the consortium might include Unicredit Bank , which has about 8 percent of Mercator and is expected to sell its stake along with a number of other local banks and companies. The owners gave no immediate comment.
Last week, Mercator’s five-member management board resigned because of disagreements with the owners over the sale of the company.
Last year 12 local lenders and investment firms tried to sell their joint 52.1 percent stake in Mercator but the sale was suspended after Mercator refused to allow due diligence to Croatian rival Agrokor, which was the best bidder.
According to local media, Agrokor offered 221 euros per Mercator share, valuing the whole company at 832 million euros ($1.1 billion), but it eventually withdrew its bid in February.
Shares of Mercator, which operates stores in Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia, Montenegro, Albania and Bulgaria, closed 0.19 percent lower on Wednesday at 132 euros while the blue-chip SBI index gained 1.3 percent. ($1 = 0.7623 euros) (Reporting By Marja Novak.; Editing by Zoran Radosavljevic and Jane Merriman)