Ahold has remained tight-lipped on rumours that it wants to retain shares in Dutch retailer Schuitema after the unit is sold.

In January, Ahold entered into talks over the possible sale of its 73% stake in Schuitema with UK-based private equity group CVC Capital Partners.

At that time, the retail giant said that, in return for its majority stake in the company, which operates the C1000 chain of supermarkets, the group would receive cash and 50-75 stores.

Het Financieele Dagblad today (17 April) reported that Ahold, the owner of the Albert Heijn banner, also hopes to retain preference shares in the company, which could later be swapped for stores. The financial daily cited unnamed sources familiar with the situation. 

Ahold told just-food that it is unable to comment on the negotiations as they are still ongoing. The company added that it is unclear when they will draw to a close.

It has been speculated that CVC is looking to build a strong presence in the Dutch retail sector. According to the rumour mill, the private equity fund has approached French retailer Casino with an eye to acquiring its 57% stake in Super de Boer.

CVC declined to comment on the speculation.