CP All, a Thailand-based convenience store chain, has outlined plans to divest part of its 98% stake in cash-and-carry wholesaler Siam Makro.
Founded in 1988 and headquartered in Bangkok, Siam Makro operates membership based cash-and-carry trade centers under the Makro name.
According to CP All, the sale will boost the number of Siam Makro shares tradable in the stock market and also help reduce CP All’s net gearing, which surged after its $6.6bn acquisition of Siam Makro in 2013, reports Reuters.
CP All, the local operator of 7-Eleven convenience stores, took on $5.8bn of one-year bridging loans to finance the acquisition of Siam Makro, becoming the retailer with the highest net debt in Southeast Asia.
The stake sale plan is in line with other major companies under Charoen Pokphand Group, which has increasingly relied on debt to finance their expansion.
To reduce its debt, CP All refinanced a majority of these short-term dollar loans with long-term baht bonds, reducing its dollar debt to less than 10% of the total.
To further refinance its debt, the retailer is issuing $1.25bn of bonds in the domestic market in August, the third CP All bond issue since 2013.
CP All, controlled by billionaire Dhanin Chearavanont’s CP Group, operates more than 7,000 outlets of 7-Eleven, making it the world’s third-largest store network behind Japan’s Seven & I Holdings and 7-Eleven Inc. in the US.