// Tesco sells 20% share of joint venture in China for £275m
// A venture with China Resources Holdings, Gain Land was first established in 2014, with Tesco taking minority stake
Tesco has sold its 20 per cent share of a joint venture in China to a unit of its partner China Resources Holdings (CRH) for £275 million, establishing its exit from the country.
The Big 4 grocer entered the Gain Land joint venture with CRH in 2014, when it began its retreat from China.
It combined Tesco’s 131 outlets in the country with CRH’s almost 3000 stores, called Vanguard.
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The exit will enable Tesco to “further simplify and focus the business on its core operations” and the cash will be used for general corporate purposes.
The transaction will be completed on February 28 and there were no conditions to closing or regulatory approvals required.
The news comes two months after Tesco announced it was considering the sale of its Thai and Malaysian businesses.
In December, Tesco’s Asian business, which the supermarket confirmed is being eyed up by a potential suitor at the time, was estimated to be worth as much as £7.2 billion.
The price tag prediction came after the supermarket reiterated that it could leave the continent it has operated in for more than 20 years and where it has 2041 stores with 60,000 workers.
Tesco said it was approached by a potential buyer and “commenced a review of the strategic options for its businesses in Thailand and Malaysia, including an evaluation of a possible sale of these businesses”.
The news saw shares in Tesco surge to 245.6p at one point on December 9, a dramatic jump from the previous closing price of 232.3p.