Metcash takes on Goliaths in a pub fight

 In Australia, Metcash/IGA, NewZealand

THE big supermarkets’ battle for a larger slice of the consumer dollar is set to spill into pubs and poker machines after grocery wholesaler Metcash, which operates the IGA chain, is believed to have hired a broker to identify venues and hotels.
It follows a $375 million-plus equity raising launched by Metcash last month and a strategic review that includes slashing 500 staff, cutting debt and identifying bolt-on acquisitions.
BusinessDay understands that up to $90 million could be allocated to bolt-on acquisitions, including pubs and poker machines, as pressure mounts on Metcash to revive earnings as the price war between Coles and Woolworths heats up.
Metcash is said to be close to exchanging contracts on the leasehold of three Queensland pubs, with one suggested to be the Aspley Hotel. Sydney Morning Herald – Read more…

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