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Qatari bids for Sainsbury

Published:  23 July, 2008

Sainsbury's has confirmed it had received two preliminary bid approaches from Qatari investment group Delta Two.

The approach is thought to value the UK's third largest supermarket at 12bn.

The company said: "J Sainsbury plc confirms it has received a preliminary approach from Delta (Two) Limited, which may or may not lead to an offer being made for Sainsbury's.

"The board will make a further announcement, as appropriate, in due course."

Delta Two, which is controlled by a fund established by the Qatar Investment Authority, confirmed it was in preliminary discussions with Sainsbury's.

"These discussions relate to the possibility of Delta Two increasing its interest in Sainsbury by way of a cash offer to acquire the balance of the ordinary share capital of

Sainsbury," the company said in a statement.

"No decision has been made regarding any possible offer and accordingly there can be no certainty that any offer for Sainsbury will be made. A further announcement may be made, if and when appropriate."

Paul Taylor, principal of London-based Three Delta, which is the strategic investment adviser to Delta Two in relation to this investment, said: "Three Delta is focused on strategic, long-term investments in exceptional businesses, principally in the UK, which have strong incumbent management teams, leading market positions and long-term growth opportunities and Sainsbury's meets all of these requirements.

"Three Delta has a high regard for the board, management and employees of Sainsbury and is supportive of the company's operational strategy. We are very pleased that the Fund, through Delta Two, has made a substantial investment in Sainsbury."

Delta Two has already built up a 25% stake in Sainsbury's over recent months, triggering speculation that it would make a formal bid.