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European Shopping Mall Portfolio Sold for €2 billion

Carrefour Group, the world's second-largest retailer, has agreed to purchase 127 shopping malls from real estate group Klepierre for €2 billion ($2.8 billion), as part of the company's back-to-basics strategy.

In the deal, Carrefour will acquire shopping malls in France, Spain and Italy, with a gross annual rental income of approximately €135 million, the company said in an announcement.

Along with the deal, Carrefour will contribute 45 shopping mall in France valued at €0.7
billion for the creation of a new company. With more than 800,000 square meters of retail space, and assets of €2.7 billion, the new company will be financed with €1.8 billion in equity, as well as €900 million in debt, Carrefour said.

Carrefour will have a 42 percent in the new company, with the rest held by institutional investors. 

"It's a smart move as they get access to these shopping malls with a limited cash outlay," Natixis analyst Jean-Baptiste Teissier, told Reuters.

Carrefour Group has almost 10,000 stores in 34 countries, and posted a total of €101.3 billion in sales in 2012, the company stated.

The deal should close in the first half of 2014.

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