Violet Acquisitions announces the sale of Somerfield to the Co-Operative Group

Violet Acquisitions announces the sale of Somerfield to the Co-Operative Group

16 July 2008

London, 16 July 2008 – The shareholders of Violet Acquisitions Limited (“Violet”), which include funds advised by Apax Partners (“Apax”), Barclays Capital, the Tchenguiz Family Trust and Kaupthing, have today agreed the sale of Somerfield Limited (“Somerfield” or “the Company”) to the Co-Operative Group for £1.565bn.

Somerfield is a high street supermarket operator with approximately 880 stores, including 150 forecourts, in prominent high street locations across the UK.  Its offering is high quality food with a particular emphasis on fresh foods and convenience shopping.  Somerfield was taken private in December 2005 by Violet and its private equity owners subsequently worked with management to facilitate its evolution to a focused local retailer with a quality portfolio of property assets and a rejuvenated brand.

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For further information, please contact:

Apax Partners
Ben Harding
Tel: +44 (0)20 7872 6401


About Apax Partners

Apax Partners is one of the world’s leading private equity investment groups.  It operates across the United States, Europe and Asia and has more than 30 years of investing experience.  Funds under the advice of Apax Partners total over $40 billion around the world.  These Funds provide long-term equity financing to build and strengthen world-class companies.  Apax Partners Funds invest in companies across its global sectors of Tech & Telecom, Retail & Consumer, Media, Healthcare and Financial & Business Services.

About Somerfield

Somerfield, whose mission is to be ‘Britain’s favourite local grocery shop’, operates approximately 880 stores (including 150 forecourts) across the UK and employs 42,000 colleagues.

Somerfield was taken private in December 2005 and is owned by a consortium consisting of Apax Partners Worldwide LLP, Barclays Capital, the Tchenguiz Family Trust, Kaupthing Bank and Management.

In the year ended 26 April 2008, Somerfield had sales of £4.2 billion and EBITDA of £233 million.

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Somerfield Plc

Former UK based supermarket chain