German-based retail, wholesale group Metro proposes split

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

BERLIN (AP) — European retail and wholesale group Metro AG says it aims to split in two, separating its food and wholesale activities from its consumer electronics business.

Metro, based in Duesseldorf, Germany, said Wednesday that the move would give the businesses "improved focus, quicker decision-making processes, more flexibility and improved operational efficiency." If a review of the strategy is favorable and shareholders back the plan, the company aims to complete the split in mid-2017.

The plan would produce a food and wholesale business including Metro cash-and-carry stores and Real supermarkets, and a consumer electronics company including Saturn and Media Markt stores.

Metro said the businesses "currently have very limited operational overlap and very limited synergies. The plan is for its shareholders to receive shares in both resulting companies.