Austrian retailer Spar has announced that it has been given permission by Hungary’s competition board for its local unit to buy 13 Billa stores from Germany’s second-largest food retailer, Rewe.

Although a sales contract had been signed on 10 September the deal had been subject to approval from the competition authority.

The 13 Billa stores will be opened as Spar stores late next month, with the 400 Billa staff being transferred to Spar Hungary.

Spar hopes that the new stores will generate 10bn forints (US$41.1m) in gross revenue next year. The company also aims to increase its market share in Hungary from 5.4% to around 10% in the next six to eight years.

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