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retail Migros to sell off Globus and other subsidiaries

Migros store

The Migros Group is one of the largest employers in Switzerland with more than 100,000 employees.

(Keystone / Melanie Duchene)

Switzerland’s largest retailer the Migros Group has launched a call for buyers for four subsidiaries including high-end department store Globus.

On Thursday, the Migros Groupexternal link announced that it is pursuing a strategic reorientation that involves selling off well-known brand subsidiaries including Globus department stores, furniture chain Interio, e-bicycle distributor m-way, and interior design subsidiary Gries Deco.

While these are familiar brands in many Swiss cities, they represent a “rather small” portion of the Migros business, which includes everything from supermarkets, fitness centers, and banks.

In a press releaseexternal link, Migros President Fabrice Zumbrunnen suggested that the brands would have better prospects of success if they were separate entities, stating “Migros is no longer the best owner today”.

The strategic shift will focus on expanding its convenience segment, digital distribution channels, and its presence in the healthcare sector which includes medical care subsidiary Medbase. Do it + Garden, OBI, melectronics, micasa, SportXX and Bike World are all set to be further developed.

The focus on high-end, luxury products has moved Globus – which has been under Migros’ control since 1997 – away from the key priorities of the Migros Group.

The company has not indicated a timeframe for the sale and does not expect any significant changes for employees or companies during this period.

The Migros Group generated sales of CHF28.5 billion ($29 billion) in 2018. The company currently has 106,622 employees, 15.9% who work abroad, making it one of the largest employers in Switzerland. Some 3,100 employees work for Globus.

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Seventy years ago, buying groceries in Switzerland and the rest of Europe changed forever thanks to a new store concept from Migros.


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