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Last Updated: Thursday, 14 July, 2005, 07:42 GMT 08:42 UK
Baugur drops Somerfield bid plans
Somerfield store
Problems at home have prompted Baugur to drop plans for Somerfield
Icelandic investment firm Baugur has abandoned plans to acquire the UK's fifth largest supermarket chain Somerfield and sold its 5% stake.

Baugur recently said it will slow its expansion efforts in the UK following revelations of a fraud scandal.

Chief executive Jon Asgeir Johannesson and four other bosses are to face 40 fraud charges relating to accountancy rule breaches in a trial in Iceland.

Mr Johannesson denies the allegations and Baugur supports him.

Baugur was a key partner in a group that had been trying to buy Somerfield, along with venture capital firm Apax Partners, retail entrepreneur Robert Tchenguiz and investment firm Barclays Capital.

On Sunday, the group said it would sell its stake in the supermarket group to Mr Tchenguiz.

Baugur's expansion in the UK has been rapid.

Since 1998 it has concluded 45 deals, including the takeover of food retailer Iceland and London toy store Hamley's.

Baugur forced to slow expansion
10 Jul 05 |  Business
Baugur still eyes Somerfield bid
04 Jul 05 |  Business
Baugur: From Iceland to Iceland
04 Jul 05 |  Business
Somerfield suitors mull joint bid
12 Apr 05 |  Business

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