BRUSSELS, Belgium, May 12, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Delhaize Group confirmed today that it has entered into preliminary discussions with Royal Ahold N.V. to explore the opportunity of combining the two companies.
These discussions may or may not result in a future transaction. The company will communicate material updates, if any, in accordance with regulatory requirements.
- Delhaize Group
Delhaize Group is a Belgian international food retailer present in seven countries on three continents. At the end of March 2015, Delhaize Group's sales network consisted of 3 410 stores. In 2014, Delhaize Group recorded €21.4 billion ($29.4 billion) in revenues and €89 million ($118 million) net profit (Group share). At the end of 2014, Delhaize Group employed approximately 150 000 people. Delhaize Group's stock is listed on NYSE Euronext Brussels (DELB) and the New York Stock Exchange (DEG).
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Cautionary note regarding forward looking statements
Statements that are included or incorporated by reference in this press release and other written and oral statements made from time to time by Delhaize Group and its representatives, other than statements of historical fact, which address activities, events and developments that Delhaize Group expects or anticipates will or may occur in the future, including, without limitation, the possibility of combining with Royal Ahold, N.V. further fine-tuning and rolling-out of Easy, Fresh & Affordable in 160 additional Food Lion stores, the implementation of the Transformation Plan in Belgium, expected positive comparable store sales growth in the second half of the year in Belgium, expected gradual improvement in profitability in Belgium, expected costs savings, the closing, conversion and opening of stores, the expected effect of the portfolio optimization, anticipated revenue and net profit growth, anticipated free cash flow generation, strategic options, future strategies and the anticipated benefits of these strategies and (underlying) operating profit guidance, are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the U.S. federal securities laws that are subject to risks and uncertainties. These forward-looking statements generally can be identified as statements that include phrases such as "guidance," "outlook," "projected," "believe," "target," "predict," "estimate," "forecast," "strategy," "may," "goal," "expect," "anticipate," "intend," "plan," "foresee," "likely," "will," "should" or other similar words or phrases. Although such statements are based on current information, actual outcomes and results may differ materially from those projected depending upon a variety of factors, including, but not limited to, changes in the general economy or the markets of Delhaize Group, in strategy, in consumer spending, in inflation or currency exchange rates or in legislation or regulation; competitive factors; adverse determination with respect to claims; inability to timely develop, remodel, integrate, open, convert or close stores; and supply or quality control problems with vendors. Additional risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those stated or implied by such forward-looking statements are described in Delhaize Group's most recent Annual Report on Form 20-F and other filings made by Delhaize Group with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which risk factors are incorporated herein by reference. Delhaize Group disclaims any obligation to update developments of these risk factors or to announce publicly any revision to any of the forward-looking statements contained in this release, including guidance with respect to underlying operating profit, SG&A, net finance costs, capital expenditures, store openings and free cash flow, or to make corrections to reflect future events or developments.