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Spanish supermarket Dia to sack thousands

Spanish supermarket Dia to sack thousands

Madrid: Financially troubled Spanish supermarket group Dia said Friday it wanted to cut up to 2,100 jobs as it reported a massive loss.

Dia, the target of a public buyout offer by the Russian oligarch who is already its top shareholder, reported a net loss of 352.5 million euros ($399.3 million) for 2018.

The discount supermarket chain, which has had to reduce prices in the face from competitors Lidl and Mercadona, saw net sales fall nearly 11 percent to 7.3 billion euros.

The results were much worse than the expected 4-million-euro loss expected by analysts surveyed by data provider Factset. Dia's shares slumped 2.2 percent in morning trading in Madrid while the overall market was off 0.5 percent overall. Dia said the job cuts would be negotiated with trade unions.

Russian billionaire Mikhail Fridman's LetterOne investment fund, which became Dia's top shareholder in 2017 with a 29-percent stake, launched a public share offer to take over the company on Tuesday given its "serious financial difficulties".

The company's shares have lost nearly 90 percent of their value since the beginning of 2018 and have lost their place on the Madrid exchange's main Ibex 35 index.

Management problems have also plagued the firm. In December, it named its third chief executive in less than six months.

PTI

PTI

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