MILAN – Dufry AG, a global travel retailer with operations in 64 countries, and the Benetton family’s motorway and airport caterer Autogrill Spa are exploring a potential combination that would create a new global leader in travel retail, reports Bloomberg citing people familiar with the matter.
Following the news, shares in Autogrill rose 12% in Milan trading, reaching their highs since November 2020.
Dufry shares rose 1.6% in Zurich, after earlier gaining as much as jumped as much as 5.6%.
According to Bloomberg, the Benetton family would become the biggest single investor in the combined listed entity with a stake of about 20%, the people said.
Autogrill minority investors could also be offered cash as an alternative to Dufry shares, Bloomberg said.
Deliberations are at an early stage, and there is no certainty they will lead to a transaction, said the source quoted by Bloomberg.
The billionaire family behind Italian fashion brand Benetton and U.S. investment fund Blackstone made last week a takeover bid for Italian infrastructure group Atlantia that values the toll road operator at about €54bn (US$58.4 billion).
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